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Museum of Nature and Humankind

Culturally enhancing the local community, the new Museum of Nature and Humankind is the main enduring legacy bestowed upon the city of Padua following the anniversary celebrations.

Framed as the largest university museum of its kind in Europe, the museum will be an authentic research and dynamic laboratory placed at a prominent national and international level of visibility.

Located in the splendid Palazzo Cavalli, the museum merges collections from the University museums of Mineralogy, Geology, Palaeontology, Zoology, and Anthropology, while reconstituting, at least partially, the original Vallisneri Museum, the beginning of many of the Univeristy’s collections.

The scientific concept of the museum (also presented to the Minister of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism in October 2017) aims at a national and international audience and envisages the unification of precious finds from different collections. The clear and exciting narration of our planet’s history carved in stone with literal fossils allows visitors to view examples of animal adaptation. The museum preserves a thousand years of human artefacts up to this present phase where only the Homo sapiens species is capable of altering every ecosystem.

The museum leads visitors on a unique and exciting experience with an interdisciplinary, interactive, and multimedia scientific interface, showing how Earth is a great system of physical, chemical, and biological elements, which man is naturally part of.

Comparable to that of other major Italian science museums and spread over three floors, the Museum of Nature and Humankind includes a large exhibition area of almost 4,000 square meters for permanent and temporary exhibitions. Entrusted to the architectural studio Guicciardini and Magni, the museum includes the development of innovative solutions for digital exhibits as a compliment to the implementation of a dedicated Museum of Nature and Man app.

Dedicated to temporary exhibitions, the second floor covers up to 400 square metres of space, corrisponding to the average dymensions of scientific exhibitions. The area will allow the University museum system to enhance its heritage by housing an autonomous space for temporary exhibitions to be changed once or twice per year according to costs.

The opportunity to curate and host important international scientific exhibitions allows the Museum of Nature and Man to enter the international networks of the more successful exhibitions.

The auditorium, located on the ground floor and the garden area are set to host a rich program of events. Conferences, video screenings, and meetings aimed at holding the media’s attention to the museum and encouraging an influx of visitors.

Centrally located between the railway station, city centre, and Scrovegni Chapel, the main touristic attraction of the City now enlisted as UNESCO world heritage, and the Eremitani Museum, the new museum is expected to exceed 100,000 visitors per year based on the business plan approved by theBoard of Directors in October 2017.

The museum is at the centre of a specific fundraising campaign, started in 2021, which already gained the support of the Cariparo Foundation.

Project design