Development of the Italian digital platform for tourists The Italian Ministry of the Economic Development (Ministero dello sviluppo economico) and the Ministry of Goods and Cultural Activities and Tourism (Ministero dei beni e delle attività culturali e del turismo) developed a joint project to develop digital platforms for tourists in Italy. The two public entities signed a protocol in July with the aim of promoting and developing initiatives targeted at creating a digital ecosystem for the tourism industry, in order to allow citizens and tourists alike to easily access the Italian artistic, natural and cultural heritage, and to help private companies develop added value services and applications. This initiative also addresses the surprising results of a survey carried out in 2015 (Survey of the Digital Observatory of Printohotel.it - http://www.prontohotel.it/press-release/turismo-digitale-8-turistisu-10-non-rinunciano-alla-wi-fi-litalia-e-indietro-nella-digitalizzazione-nel-settore-del-turismo/), showing that only 52% of Italian hotels are equipped to offer wi-fi connection to tourists. Further to extending coverage and access to wi-fi networks, the digital ecosystem envisioned for tourists includes electronic payments, cloud-based services and other functionalities with the general goal of allowing tourists and Italian citizens to have quick and easy access to places of culture and public transportation services. The protocol will be in force for 3 years and might be extended to another 2 years. The goals set are crucial for the development of the Italian Digital Agenda - a general plan of the Italian government to develop and favor innovation, technical development and digital initiatives. However, a pre-condition to creating a digitally enriched environment for tourists is that at least two projects related to the Italian Digital Agenda are finalized; specifically, ultra-broad band connection throughout the Italian territory and the public system for the management of the digital identity of citizens (so called SPID). For more information, please contact Francesca Gaudino.