At the recent ITKI/UNESCO/City of Gastronomy Conference, which was organized by the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, the University of Arizona signed an International Memorandum of Agreement (IMOA) with the University of Parma.
The IMOA will facilitate the exchange of expertise in agricultural science and in preserving ancient food systems and cultures.
Both the City of Tucson and the City of Parma are UNESCO-designated Cities of Gastronomy, chosen for this distinction by virtue of their unique food systems and commitment to preserving and enhancing food cultures, diversity, equity, and justice.
At the University of Arizona, units such as the Center for Regional Food Studies and the Southwest Folklife Alliance are helping create networks of people doing similar or complementary work related to food. Partnering with those overseas likewise engaged in this work will enable the UA to learn new strategies for everything from increasing tourism to raising knowledge and awareness of cultural landscapes.
Through the innovative partnerships and collaborations that will emerge through this IMOA, both institutions will be better positioned to address common concerns with the sustainability and vitality of their respective regional food systems.