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Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, to be awarded the Honoris Causa degree of the University of Bologna

Eric Schmidt, co-founder of Schmidt Futures and former CEO and Chairman of Google, will be awarded the Honoris Causa Degree in Business Management, on September 10, during the Graduation ceremony of Bologna Business School. The event will take place in Piazza Maggiore in Bologna. More than 1,500 participants in BBS Master's programs will receive their diploma, in the presence of the Rector Francesco Ubertini, the Dean Massimo Bergami, and the President of BBS Romano Prodi

On Friday, September 10, Eric Schmidt will deliver his Lectio Magistralis in front of over 1500 participants in the Bologna Business School’s masters’. He will do so in the setting of Piazza Maggiore in Bologna, at the end of the ceremony for the conferral of the Honoris Causa degree in Business Management and just before the 2020-2021 Graduation of Bologna Business School, the event that marks the end of the learning journey for the participants in the University and Executive Masters’ of the Alma Mater business school.

Starting from 5:30 p.m. Bologna, in its most central and representative square, will host this high profile event for the academic and economic community, which this year will also feature the Lectio Magistralis by the entrepreneur, philanthropist, and leader of Google for twenty years.

The event will be attended by the Rector of the University of Bologna, Francesco Ubertini, the Dean of BBS, Massimo Bergami, the President of BBS Collegio di Indirizzo, Romano Prodi, and the Director of the Department of Business Sciences at the University of Bologna, Angelo Paletta.

The conferral of the Honoris Causa degree to Eric Schmidt by the oldest university in the Western world was proposed by the Department of Business Sciences as a recognition of the role Schmidt played in several sectors, as stated in the reasons for the Honoris Causa degree, in which he is defined as "one of the most important business leaders of the contemporary era, both for his achievements as an executive and the impact on society of his most significant professional experience, and for his commitment in academia and government agencies, as well as for his philanthropic activities".

Eric Schmidt served as Google’s chief executive officer and chair from 2001 to 2011, executive chair from 2011 to 2018 and most recently as technical advisor from 2018 until 2020. A visionary technologist and a central figure in the years of industrial and ecosystemic development of the Silicon Valley, Schmidt was at the helm of the Californian company during the period of its vertiginous growth on the international scene: he was responsible for the transformation of a start-up founded by two young computer scientists into one of the most influential companies in the world. He has contributed in a decisive way to the creation of Alphabet, the holding company that controls Google and a series of other innovative companies in the field of technology.

Eric Schmidt has a strong relationship with the academic world, having taught at and supported a variety of esteemed institutions, including Princeton University, Stanford University, California Institute of Technology, the University of California, Berkeley, Carnegie Mellon University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Schmidt has also invested a significant portion of his personal wealth in philanthropic initiatives. He is co-founder of Schmidt Futures, which bets early on exceptional people making the world better and is also co-founder of the Schmidt Family Foundation and Schmidt Ocean Institute.

“The Alma Mater's conferral of an honoris causa degree on the visionary talent, entrepreneur, and technologist Eric Schmidt is topical at a time when digitization is one of the main pillars on which the restart of our country and, more generally, of Europe through the Next Generation EU fund, is based," said Francesco Ubertini, Rector of the University of Bologna. "Schmidt's presence in Bologna could not have been a better opportunity to celebrate 20 years of our Business School whose commitment is aimed at training a new generation of business leaders, capable of driving international growth and digital transformation with a focus on sustainability."

“BBS celebrates its first 20 years of activity and results achieved by a great team of academics, managers and students. The community is one the pillars of our schools, because you can truly learn only with the others and because here people find travelling companions with whom to build the future," said Massimo Bergami, Dean of Bologna Business School. "We have become a point of reference both in attracting international talents and in collaborating with industry champions, the companies that drive the development of the economy. We look to the coming years with determination and humility, yet with the will to generate value and multiply opportunities for people, companies and society.”

The conferral of the Honoris Causa Degree will take place during the 2020-2021 Graduation, the most important annual event for the Bologna Business School community, which returns to Piazza Maggiore in Bologna after the break due to the health emergency and which this year involves 1,500 participants in BBS Masters’, coming from over 60 countries worldwide.

The ceremony also coincides with the 20th anniversary of BBS: since the beginning of its activities (September 12, 2001) the business school of the Alma Mater has become consolidated year after year, becoming a reality with a European standing. Today, BBS educational offering includes over 50 educational programs, with almost 2,000 participants each year, and more than 500 companies involved in a virtuous network of relationships and collaboration.

The event on September 10 will also precede another important event organized by Bologna Business School and that will involve Eric Schmidt and the Bologna Business School: the conference "Data Manufacturing and Society" will be held on Saturday September 11, from 9.30 am at the Teatro Comunale in Bologna. It will be a symposium on the future of digital manufacturing that, in the presence of BBS alumni will involve, along with Schmidt, Stefano Barrese, Head of the Banca dei Territori Division of Intesa Sanpaolo, Massimo Bergami, Dean of Bologna Business School, Stefano Bonaccini, President of the Emilia-Romagna Region, Vincenzo Colla, Councilor of the Emilia-Romagna Region, Susana Malcorra, Former Under-Secretary-General and United Nations and Dean of School of Global and Public Affair of Istituto de Empresa, Alessandro Profumo, CEO of Leonardo and President of ASD, Maurizio Marchesini, President of the Marchesini Group, Vice President of Filiere e Medie Imprese of Confindustria, Romano Prodi, Former President of European Commission and President of the Supervisory Board of BBS and Alec Ross, Senior Advisor of President Obama Administration and Distinguished Adjunct Professor of BBS.

Conferimento della Laurea ad Honorem a Eric Schmidt

10 Settembre 2021

ore: 17:30

Piazza Maggiore - Bologna

Il Former Executive Chairman e CEO di Google, tecnologo, imprenditore e filantropo riceverà la Laurea Honoris Causa in Direzione Aziendale dell'Alma Mater durante la cerimonia di Graduation Master Class 2020 e 2021 della Bologna Business School

Ingresso aperto solo agli invitati. E' possibile seguire l'evento in diretta streaming