Focus Days events included training sessions, workshops, and stakeholder meetings that were organized by individual organizations to set the dialogue before the main conference. UR2016 Focus Days included more than 30 side events. To see the full Focus Day program, please click here.

Wednesday, May 18

14:00 – 15:30          Opening ceremony & keynote address


  • Ermelinda Damiano, President of City Council of Venice , Italy
  • Fabrizio Curcio, Head of the National Civil Protection Department, Italy
  • John Roome, Senior Director, Climate Change Group, World Bank Group
  • Pablo Suarez, Red Cross Red Cresent Climate Centre and University College London

Keynote address:  Polly Morland, an award-winning British writer and documentarian

15:30 – 16:00          Coffee break

16:00 – 18:30       Ignite: 5 minute lightning presentations by technical session leads

18:30 – 20:00          Welcome cocktail reception

Thursday, May 19

09:00 –10:30         Resilience Dialogue: Technology, disaster risk and the gender divide

10:30 – 11:00          Coffee break

11:00 – 12:30          Technical sessions (4 parallel)

12:30 – 14:00         Lunch

14:00 – 15:30          Asking the hard questions: The impact of climate change on our decisions

15:30 – 16:00         Coffee break

16:00 – 17:30         Technical sessions (4 parallel)

18:00 – 19:30         5×15, 5 outstanding individuals have 15 minutes to tell stories about ‘risk’


  • Marcus du Sautoy, Charles Simonyi Professor for the Public Understanding of Science and Professor of Mathematics, Oxford University. Du Sautoy will be speaking about his latest book What We Cannot Know: Explorations at the Edge of Knowledge
  • Benedict Allen, Explorer, writer and film maker whose books include: The Faber Book of Exploration; Edge of Blue Heaven and The Skeleton Coast, talks about his journeys in the Amazon basin and beyond
  • Misha Glenny, Journalist and foremost expert in organised crime and cyber crime, author of McMafia: Seriously Organised Crime; DarkMarket: How Hackers Became the New Mafia and Nemesis: One Man and the Battle for Rio
  • Jane da Mosto, Environmental scientist, MA, Oxford University, M. Phil. Imperial College London, talking about risk and resilience in the Venice lagoon
  • Francesco da Mosto, Architect, author and TV presenter whose BBC series include Francesco’s Italy; Francesco’s Venice; and Francesco’s Kitchen speaking about the history of Venice

Friday, May 20

9:00 – 10:30           Technical sessions (4 parallel)

10:30 – 11:00         Coffee break

11:00 – 12:30         Technical sessions (3 parallel)

12:30 – 14:00         Lunch

14:00 – 15:30         Technical sessions (4 parallel)

15:30 – 16:00         Coffee break

16:00 – 17:30         Closing ceremony & keynote address


  • Laura Frigenti, Director, Italian Agency for Development Cooperation
  • Laura Tuck, Vice President, Sustainable Development, World Bank Group

Keynote address: Jamais Cascio, futurist

Sendoff address: Gianumberto Accinelli, entomologist