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16th September 2021


During this year’s Milan Design Week, One Works together with ICA Group and Plinio il Giovane, were excited to take the public on a voyage of discovery through the different facets of sustainability with “SUSTAINABILITY PAINTS THE WORLD”.

Through a physical installation and a series of online talks structured around UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals, we brought together some of the industry’s leading experts to discuss and share their thoughts with the public on how sustainability can, and increasingly needs to be, the underlying product and process philosophy for any project.


“We are what we eat” said the philosopher Feuerbach, “and what we eat can change the world”.

Scientists warn that about a third of greenhouse gas emissions depend on the food system, those gases that envelop the Earth like a blanket and heat it more and more. In other words: to curb global warming, an ecological change at the table is essential. But the extraordinary thing is that sustainable food is nothing more than healthy food. Food that is respectful of the planet is the same food that is kind to health.

The physical well-being (basis for mental balance) of people is in fact a key element for any policy of social and economic sustainability: just think of the costs that the health systems of all countries have to bear for diseases and chronic conditions due to lack of prevention, the reorientation underway in health policies, with the transition from a concept of "treatment of the disease" to a broader one of "personal care", but also to the investments of companies in "workplace wellness" measures and tools, which concern the design and organization of workspaces but also the balance of life-times of work.

On Monday 6 September, Writer and Journalist, Eliana Liotta, and Marketing Director at Boston Consulting Group, Francesco Guidara, spoke with Journalist, Mattia Schieppati, on the importance of UN SDG 3 (Health and Wellness) and the role the construction industry must play. Watch the full talk here:


Education as a basis and fundamental engine for any sustainable development. Educational gap not only between developed and developing countries, but also within developed countries themselves: what are the causes? Why and how to make the education system (s) truly inclusive? What does it mean today to offer quality education / education? The issue of soft skills is increasingly fundamental, compared to "core" training: are our institutions, from kindergarten to university, already aligned with these new needs and expectations? What is the added value of the Italian education / education / training model, which formula could be "export"? Bocconi and Collegio San Carlo are two institutions of excellence: how can you make sure that excellence is inclusive and not exclusive?

Promoting inclusive education means being able to bring the world of education / education closer and collaborate with the world of work so that there is no so-called brain drain. A reflection on the training that the business sector offers or should offer to workers in a lifelong learning perspective.

On Tuesday 7 September, Dean for International Affairs and Professor of Finance at Università Bocconi, Stefano Caselli, and Rector at Collegio San Carlo Milano, Don Alberto Torriani, spoke with Journalist, Mattia Schieppati, about the importance of UN SDG 4 (Quality Education). Watch the full talk here:


Until a few years ago, the words "development" and "sustainability" did not seem to reconcile. Development involved resource consumption and negative impact. Today sustainability is one of the founding elements of the development strategies of companies and states. What are the elements that make sustainable, fair, and responsible growth possible?

The horizon indicated by Goal 9, "Building a resilient infrastructure and promoting innovation and fair, responsible and sustainable industrialization", indicates a clear horizon of action (and responsibility) for the world of business and finance, which is it engages in two other major lines of development that characterize these last years, and the next decades: that of the digital transition and that of the ecological transition. All this implies not only a new vision of doing business, but also - or above all - a reflection on the rgata on the need to think at the level of the system, of development networks, of proactive connections, of enabling infrastructures, whether physical or digital.

To enable the transition to the new world, public and private capital, technology, and design skills are needed. In this great challenge, private finance will play fundamental roles, imposing an investment method that implies respect for deadlines, the search for an adequate economic return and risk management.

On Wednesday 8 September, General Manager at AIFI and President at ExSUF (Centre of Excellence UNECE-LIUC), Anna Gervasoni, and Director Corporate Sustainability & Responsibility at Bulgari and Sustainable Development Director at LVMH Italy, Eleonora Rizzuto, spoke with Editorial Director of Domus and DomusAir, Walter Mariotti, about the importance of UN SDG 9 (Businesses, Innovation, Infrastructures). Watch the full talk here:


The fight against climate change is an epochal and enormous challenge, but one that involves many small things. From a culture of approaching resources, and their consumption, which must take a new path, and do so urgently. The world of planning, architecture, even design, have a great say on this front. Even before designing, it is necessary to transmit a new (and ancient) culture.

We can use ecological materials, we can apply the most advanced technologies, but if we do not get used to thinking with a sustainable mentality, it will be useless to build the greenest house in the world, because within it we will continue to behave as irresponsible consumerists.

We must therefore intervene with a new way of thinking, which is now born for the world of tomorrow: through the qualities of space, we can spread virtuous behaviors linked to the idea of ​​being well together. When designing a building, an environment or an object, not only the shape, the color, the material, the composition is drawn, but above all the behaviors of those who will use these buildings, these environments or these objects are drawn.

On Thursday 9 September, Architect and Designer, Michele De Lucchi spoke to Editorial Director of Domus and DomusAir, Walter Mariotti, spoke about the importance of UN SDG 9 (Fight Against Climate Change) and how the design industry can play a leading role. Watch the full talk here:



Our lives are always too rushed. We now choose, produce, and consume with almost no thought for the significance of our actions. Without considering the impact they have on people and planet. And without imagining that each of us, in our small and large everyday choices and actions, can become part of a change that can no longer be delayed.

For this reason, within the joyous vortex of Fuorisalone 2021, we decided to create a space where we can slow the pace. Where we can sit, even if just for a minute. To regenerate ideas by broadening our horizons to include the great challenges that all countries in the world are facing, under the guidance of the United Nations’ Agenda 2030, in order to design a future (increasingly close!) marked by sustainability.

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set out by the UN in 2015 and signed by 193 countries, are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that by 2030 all people enjoy peace and prosperity. They are a map, a true Agenda, that traces the route of our actions, as people and as businesses.

For each Goal, “One Chair, One Goal” offered some food for thought from women and men who on a daily basis concretely work to translate these ideals into reality. 17 small seeds of thought to plant before we get up and return to the daily rush. Click here to read more.

Thank you to our Supports

On behalf of One Works, ICA Group and Plinio il Giovane, we would like to express a huge thank you to everybody that visited during the week, our special guests, our expert panel of speakers, and the following technical sponsors for making this event possible:


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