Italian impressions: Project on the effects of globalization presented in Venice

Migropolis: Venice / Atlas of a Global Situation

Migropolis is a unique human geography project conducted by the IUAV University of Venice. In October 2006, the Class on Politics of Representation of the IUAV Arts & Design Faculty embarked on the project for the duration of one semester. Under the aegis of Dr. Wolfgang Scheppe, a German philosopher and Venetian-of-choice, the activities evolved into a major, urban project involving the participation of international students, the art gallery Bevilacqua La Masa (Italy), the German publishing house Hatje Cantz Verlag and the engagement of censhare AG.


Within the context of the project the city of Venice and the movement patterns of the people circulating throughout the city were subjected to a comprehensive and in-depth analysis. Tourists and immigrants were interviewed, photographed, movement profiles were compiled, while economic, social and ethnic factors were measured, quantified and compared in an international context and visualized by way of sophisticated information graphics. After three years of research the findings are now available as two volumes, weighing some four kilograms, and encompassing a total of 1344 pages. One of the key findings is the fact that the economic and social interactions of globalization escalate in Venice and can be regarded as an exemplary prototype – providing a forecast for other metropolises. This eye-opening, thought provoking book has been received with highly enthusiastic reviews .

The censhare system played a central role in the management of the project’s media data. In March 2008, the text, layout and image documents created to date were fed in to a Media Asset Management system that censhare hosted free of charge. The system was used for the production of the book all the way through to the final print-ready PDF documents. The contributing parties accessed the system from some 12 countries across the globe, from Italy to Columbia.

The Migropolis project is a genuine premiere for censhare in three respects:

1) The utilization of the system for a major book production
2) The implementation of web-based, international and therefore distributed, decentral collaboration
3) The engagement of censhare AG as a sponsor in the non-profit sector.

The technical experience we gained in the course of the project, as a number of additional developments in production control and steering, as well as the processing of geographic data are currently being documented by project manager Andreas Klostermaier in the form of a case study. The study is scheduled for publication at the end of the year.

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