Search this site

Meeting: The Future of the Academy, Pari, Italy 8-11 September 2000.

Participants' Biographies

Rita Lauria

Rita Lauria, (Ph.D.University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, MA, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, BA, University Southern California) is a Research Associate of the M.I.N.D. Labs (Media Interface and Network Design Labs) of the telecommunications department of Michigan State University and of Ohio University. Her research focuses on new computational communications media that generate virtual realities. Specifically, her research focus involves the philosophy and design of virtuality, the teleology of media, electric sensibility, presence in virtual environments, and philosophical, psychological, and aesthetic considerations for the design and use of interactive, virtual communications technologies. She is currently completing a book project that identifies the metaphysical ground and its concomitant shift in thought that emerges as the effect of new meta-communications media upon the mind/body whole.

Concurrently she is a visiting lecturer at North Carolina State University in the Department of Communications where she teaches in the area of the theory and the practice of public relations.

Rita Lauria was also Assistant to the Vice Chancellor of Public Service and Extended Education and Director of the Global Virtual University Initiative at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. There she helped develop and manage a pilot project with Japanese universities for international distance learning.

Prior to this she served as Communications Advisor to the Secretary of Transportation and Communications of the Federated States of Micronesia where she set up the Communications Division and established the radiofrequency management program for the country. From her research focus on communication technologies and a past research focus on international communications policy she co-authored The Law and Regulation of International Space Communication.

In addition, Ms. Lauria has taught courses at the community college in English and composition. Besides academic authoring, her practical experience includes public relations, multimedia production, including film and video production, journalism, and photography in Los Angeles, California

Elena Liotta

Dr. Elena Liotta born in Buenos Aires (Argentina), 1950. Clinical psychologist, Jungian psychoanalyst, Professor of Psychology and Psychodynamics for private and public institutions, Italian and foreign.

Has written many articles, edited books, given and organized conferences in her field, following an ideal development that goes from Oriental Studies (her first university degree) through Creativity studies, to Contemporary Science and Contemporary Society (including Women Studies, Education, Psychosocial problems).

She has also worked, in recent years, as a City Councillor in Orvieto (Central Italy) adding a political and administrative experience to her background. Her present attention moves toward integrating deep psychological knowledge and sensitivity into large public institutions devoted to the care and the cure of people - i.e. School and Health systems - and into the Community as a whole.

Dr Liotta's discussion proposals for the conference.

Address: Loc. Torre S. Severo, 51 - Orvieto (TR) - ITALY Tel. 076328590 e-mail:

Arthur J Cordell

Arthur Cordell received a BA from McGill University and a Ph.D. (economics) from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. He has worked for the US Government in Washington and as a business consultant in New York City.

Arthur was a Science Advisor with the Science Council of Canada where he authored a number of studies for the Science Council, including 'The Multinational Firm, Foreign Direct Investment, and Canadian Science Policy,' 'The Role and Function of Government Laboratories and the Transfer of Technology to the Manufacturing Sector' ( with J.M. Gilmour) 'The Uneasy Eighties: The Transition To An Information Society.' Dr. Cordell was project officer for the study which led to Council report 'Canada as a Conserver Society: Resource Uncertainties and the Need for New Technologies,' he was also project officer for Council report 'Planning Now For An Information Society: Tomorrow Is Too Late.' He was closely associated with all Council studies on computers and communications. Arthur has also published widely in a number of academic and popular journals.

Currently, Arthur Cordell is Special Advisor, Information Technology Policy, Industry Canada, Ottawa. His area of interest is the social, political and economic implications of information technology for Canadian society.

Arthur is co-author of such recent books as, Shifting Time: Social Policy and the Future of Work (1994); The New Wealth of Nations: Taxing Cyberspace (1997). Both deal, in different ways, with the impact of information technology on the quantity and quality of work (the future of work and working); the productivity of networks and how that productivity may be more widely accessed and distributed; the promise and potential of electronic commerce. Arthur Cordell developed the idea of the 'bit tax', a way of getting at the productivity of a networked economy. The 'bit tax' also offers a way for different juridictions to apply a sales tax to electronic commerce. His current research is centred on the 'unintended consequences of information technology.'

Dr. F. David Peat

Peat was born in Liverpool, England where he obtained his PhD. After teaching at Queen's University, Kingston, Canada he carried out research in theoretical physics at the National Research Council of Canada. Peat had a long time association with the physicist David Bohm.

Over the last years Peat's main activities have been lecturing and writing books and trying to figure out where we are and where we are going. In Canada he organized dialogue circles between Native American elders and Western scientists to explore their respective world views. In London he began dialogues between artists and scientists. He has also been active in exploring the links between scientific metaphors and Jungian theory.

In 1996 Peat moved to the village of Pari, where this meeting will be held - its relaxing, the food is good, the people are friendly and it gives him plenty of time to write. He is the author of some twenty books, available in fourteen languages.

Dr. Ben Blum

(Note: Because of other committments Dr Blum will not now be participanting.)

PhD in physics at Brandeis University.
Postdoctoral with F. David Peat and the National Research Council of Canada

Dr Blum teaches physics, astronomy, and mathematics at the Massachusetts College of Art where he is an Associate Professor. His major, and mostly successful, struggle has been to avoid commodification of his teaching, his students, and himself.

Professor Basil Hiley

Basil J. Hiley is a Professor of Physics in the Theoretical Physics Research Unit at Birkbeck College, the University of London. His main interests are the foundations of quantum theory and relativity. He is investigating a process-based theory of pre-space with a specific aim of developing a quantized form of general relativity. He also has interests in exploring the possibility of finding a theory of the relationship between mind and matter. He also looks towards the interaction between art and science to provide fresh insights and inspiration for his research. He has written many papers on fundamental questions in quantum mechanics and on the relationship of mind and matter. With the late Professor Bohm he has co-authored The Undivided Universe, Routledge, London, 1993. He is also co-editor with David Peat of Quantum Implications, Essays in Honour of David Bohm, Routledge, London. 1987



Jayne Persch directs HYPAXIS and BRIAH Contemporary Dance Co.
Aas a dancer she has received some of the finest training and dance opportunities in the world including the Stuttgart Ballet (Germany), American Ballet Theater (New York) and the Royal Ballet (London, England).

Among her teachers are Ruth St. Denis, Ted Shawn and Martha Graham - pioneers in Modern Dance; Barbara Chesney Schmir (Washington Ballet), Mark Hall and Sandra Noll Hammond (Ballet Russe de MonteCarlo), Russel Fratto (Ballet Etudes), Robert Joffrey(Joffrey Ballet & American Ballet Center),and Leon Danelian (School of Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo), Vladimir Doukoudovsky & I. Strogonova(Carnegie Hall - Ballet Arts).

Most intensively, she trained with Valentina Pereyaslavec, William Griffith, Igor Schwezoff, Yurek Lazowsky at American Ballet Theatre School and Julia Farron, Ninette de Valois at the Royal Ballet School. She has also taken her Eurythmy training with Frau Zuccoli in Dornach, Switzerland.

Ms. Persch has performed with the Royal Ballet, the Stuttgart Ballet, American Ballet Theater, Metroplolitan Opera Ballet and the Hartford Opera Ballet to name a few.

Due to an injury, Ms. Persch returned to the United States and has served as choreographer, teacher and director of several companies. Her work has also taken her into collaboration with orchestras and symphony groups such as the Springfield Symphony as well as with professional theaters like Theater-By-The Sea where she worked as Assistant Director and Choreographer for more than 11 Broadway shows and American Stage Festival where she has begun a recent collaboration as choreographer for the annual "A Christmas Carol" and "Dames at Sea".

As a choreographer, Ms. Persch has taken her work to Ireland and France to the Festival Off D'Avignon, and most recently, created a tour of works as one of only 50 Collaborating Partners in the state for the MacDowell Colony Centennial Celebration.

Internationally, Ms. Persch maintains connections in Europe; she has presented choreography in the American Choreographers Showcase at the International Festival OFF D'Avignon with an open invitation to return. Ms. Persch has been commissioned by QUERCUS S.A. R. L. to create a work for presentation in Geneva, Switzerland and France and was asked to represent Ireland at the ELIA Conference in Spain. Dancers from Australia, Ireland, England, Holland and Spain joined Ms. Persch in choreography for the MacDowell Centennial Celebration.

As Artistic Director for the Springfield Ballet, Ms. Persch received an award for outstanding achievement from the National Association for Science teachers for the alternative-educational program she designed and implemented in the Springfield school system called - "Let's Create Together - The Planets".

Ms. Persch has taught at the University of New Hampshire where she is credited for having started the Ballet Program. She also taught Theater Jazz and Contemporary Dance during her tenure at the University. At Antioch-New England, Ms. Persch has taught Anatomy & Movement, as an adjunct instructor for the Dance Movement Therapy Graduate Program. She has also taught Anatomy and Physiology for the Institute for Therapeutic Arts in their Massage Therapy Training & Certification Program.

As a Massage Therapist, she is certified and licensed in the state of New Hampshire. She is a certified Reiki II & Traeger pracitioner. She is a member of the American Massage Therapy Association and the Pre & Perinatal Psychology Association of North America and PAM. She maintains a private practice and accepts referrals from chiropractors, orthopedic surgeons and general practitioners.

As an Artist-in-Education for the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts, Ms. Persch has traveled around the state bringing Dance & Movement into schools & libraries and rural areas through enrichment and educational/arts programs.

As a consultant to the Nashua Public School System in New Hampshire, she has assisted in the implementation of the National Dance Program. In private schools, she has created a Tutorial Program for advanced and committed students at Phillips Exeter Academy and teaches at the Well School in Peterborough, New Hampshire.

Ms. Persch's talents and studies also have her working with Special Needs children in both public school systems and through her private practice and studio/school - Hypaxis.

As an Asian Studies major and Honors Graduate, Ms, Persch brings a deep understanding of Eastern philosophies, the Ti-Yung dichotomy and 'intellectual history' behind the ancient Tai Ch'i, Kabuki and Temple movement forms as well as into her private practices in body-mind correlations . In 1999, as one of five final candidates for Chairman of the Masters Program in Contemporary Dance Performance at the Irish World Music Center - University of Limerick, Ireland; Ms. Persch designed a two year intensive Masters Training Program for Contemporary Dance Performers which envisioned the humanity not only in the performer but in his/her future audiences. This new program will not begin until the year 2000.

As a teacher and movement therapist, she works to prevent injuries and to increase body awareness so that dance and movement may be used as therapy together with music and color, speech and drama. In her work in psychology, she blends her new knowledge of the new sciences and theories into body-mind correlations and creativity. For dancers, she is a source of inspiration and rehabilitation after life in dance. With more than 25 years of professional experience in dancing, teaching, directing and choreography, as well as continued personal study in massage therapy, psychology and the new sciences, Ms. Persch brings a certain compassion, passion and joy - an understanding to her work. She offers a real sense of accomplishment and nurtures an awareness of personal integrity that is rooted in her love of the arts and her human committment. She is currently enrolled in the Assisi Conference Seminars,2-Year Certificate Program to write and work toward her PhD.

Prof.Ruth Dempsy

Dr. Ruth Dempsey is Visiting Professor in the Faculty of Education University of Ottawa, where she teaches courses in Curriculum Design and Evaluation, Religious Education and co-ordinates the Reflective Teaching Seminar. She has worked as an elementary teacher, educational consultant and in the private sector as President of Lifelong Learning Consultants. In this latter capacity, she served for six years as editor of the consultancy's newsletter, Learning Edge Bulletin.

For close to twenty years, she has worked in the field of pre-service and inservice Teacher Education. In the 1980's Ruth provided leadership for the design and implementation of an andragogical model of teacher education at the University of Ottawa. During the 1990's, she headed a three-year research project in the development of collaborative school-based approaches to field experiences. In collaboration with colleagues, the Ontario Ministry of Education and the School Boards, Ruth has developed many initiatives in the field over the years. Currently, she chairs the university's Annual Teacher Education Conference, Beginning Tomorrow Today.

Committed to the importance of community, Ruth has done extensive work in the field of parent education. She has also worked with women in trouble with the law and served as part of her community's outreach program for street people. In the late 1970's Ruth founded Telassure, a volunteer friendly visiting service for seniors in the Ottawa area. She served as its Volunteer Director for seven years.

Her current interests focus on the study of lifelong learning and the relationship of learning to health and the aging process.

To read Dr Dempsy's contributions and suggestions for the conference


Dept. Of Human Physiology - Nuovi Istituti Biologici, Via Aldo Moro 53100 Siena - Tel. 0577-234034 - Fax. 0577-234037 - E.mail:


Pharmacy Degree; Biological Sciences Degree; Ph. D. in General Physiology.


Research Assistant , Lecturer in General Physiology, School of Pharmacy, Univ. Siena.

Associate Professor in Human Physiology, Dental School, Univ. Siena.

Since 1986- Full Professor in Human Physiology, Medical School, Univ. Siena.

Since 1995- Vice rector for teaching - Univ. Siena

Fellowships, Conferences

Member of: SIF (Società Italiana Fisiologia); SIE (Società ItaIiana Etologia); ISRA (International Society for Research on Aggression); ISHE (International Society for Human Ethology); SIPeM (Società di Pedagogia Medica); on editorial board of "Aggression and Violent Behavior".

Organizer of the X World Conference of the International Society for Research on aggression, Siena, 1992; Organizer of the Conference Autonomia e valutazione, Siena, 1998

Present organizing and teaching system responsabilities :

Chairman of the Commissione didattica di Ateneo (Committee for teaching system)
- Chairman of the Commissione di Ateneo per il tutorato (Committee for tutoring system)
- Delegate of the Rector at the CRUI (Conference of the Italian Rectors)
- Responsible for implementation of the quality assurance system at the University of Siena -

Collaborative projects (producing publications ):

- Dr Keith Dixon Research Institute Wander - Endocrinology and Behaviour Unit, Berne (CH) - Dr Catherine Wilson Dept. Obstetrics and Gynaecology, St. George's Medical School, London (GB) - Prof Nanne Van de Poll Brain Research Institute, Amsterdam (NL) - Prof Sandra File Psychopharmacology Research Unit, Guy's Hospital, London (GB) - Prof Francesco Dessì Fulgheri Dept. Biology, Univ. Firenze

Specialization :

1) Main field: Behavioural Neuroendocrinology. 2) Other fields: Neuroethology; Sex Differences; Stress. 3) Current research interests: a) Social organization of rabbits in semi-natural conditions. b) Sex-differences in behavioural and neuroendocrine responses to stress. c) Neurochemical and endocrine factors in sexual differentiation. d) Estrogen-like pollutants, sexual differentiation and behavioural organization

Publications :

Number of publications: 134 Editor of the special issue: Aggression, gender and sex: Aggressive behavior, 20/3,1994

Book : Il nemico ha la coda- psicobiologia e biologia della violenza. Giunti Firenze,1996

Roger Malina

Roger Malina is an astrophysicist and space scientist. He is Director of the Laboratoire d"Astrophysics de Marseille in France and the NASA EUVE Orbiting Observatory at the University of California, Berkeley. He is also the executive editor of the Leonardo publications - journals, book series and web sites published through MIT Press, which address the interaction of the contemporary arts and sciences, and art and technology ( see


João M.G. Caraça obtained the D. Phil. in Nuclear Physics at the University of Oxford (1973) and the Agregação in Physics at the Lisbon Faculty of Sciences (1974).

He is the Director of the Science Department of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, in Lisbon. He is also Full Professor of Science and Tecnology Policy at the Instituto Superior de Economia e Gestão of the Universidade Técnica de Lisboa, where he coordinates the M.Sc. Course in Economics and Management of Science and Tecnology.

João Caraça is Science Adviser of the Presidente of the Portuguese Republic and published 140 scientific papers. His interests are centred in science and technology policy and in prospective studies. He authored "Do Saber ao Fazer: porquê organizar a ciência" (1993), "Ciência" (1997) and "Science et Communication" (1999). He also co-authored "Limits to Competiton" (1995).

To read Dr Caraca's essays on universities.

Chris Philippidis

Dr Chris Philippidis was born in 1944 and is the founder of the School of Interdisciplinary Sciences at the University of the West of England, of which he is the current head. The School runs the BA in Science Society and the Media, an innovative undergraduate degree, carries out research into areas involving science and the public and publishes the magazine 'Wavelength' that carries essays on science in society.


Born: September 7, 1950, in Rome (Italy)

Family: Married to Sonia. One child: Matteo

Citizenship: Italian

Current Position

Full Professor of Economic Policy, University of Siena (Italy)

Previous Positions

1991-1996: Associate Professor of Economics, University of Siena

988- 1991: Associate Professor of Economics, University of Calabria

1981-1987: Assistant Lecturer in Economics, University of Rome "La Sapienza"

1976- 1980: Research Fellow, University of Rome, "La Sapienza"


Member of the Committee for the Evaluation of Research Projects, University of Siena

Member of the Committee for teaching system, University of Siena

Coordinator of the research area "Economy and the Environment" of the European Association for Evolutionary Political Economy;

Deputy director of IMES (Istituto Meridionale di Storia e Scienze sociali);

Member of the scientific Board of Meridiana;

Member of the scientific Board of GE;

Member of the executive committe of "Accademia per le arti e le scienze digitali" of Siena;

Member of Società Italiana degli Economisti, International Economic Association and European Association for Evolutionary Political Economy;

Member of the team working on the National Action Plan 2000, at the Italian "Ministero del Lavoro";

Member of the scientific board of Legambiente.


Opportunism and Adaptation in Economic and Political Markets, in The politics and economics of power, edited by S. Bowles, M. Franzini and U. Pagano, Routledge, Londra, 1999;

Introduction, in The politics and economics of power, edited by S. Bowles, M. Franzini and U. Pagano, Routledge, Londra, 1999 (jointly with S. Bowles and U. Pagano)

I dilemmi del Welfare State nell'epoca della globalizzazione in Globalizzazione e Stato Sociale, edited by N. Acocella, Il Mulino, 1999 (jointly with L. Milone);

Il nonprofit in Istituzioni tra mercato e stato edited by N. Acocella, Carocci, 1999

Grande impresa e Mezzogiorno: Alcuni elementi di riflessione, in Grande impresa e sviluppo italiano, edited by C. Annibaldi and G. Berta, Il Mulino, 1999 (jointly with A. Giunta)

Lezioni di economia dell'ambiente, Università di Siena, 1999

Welfare state, rendite e competizione in Saggi in onore di Federico Caffè, vol. III, edited by N. Acocella, G.M. Rey, M. Tiberi, Angeli, Milano, 1999

Economic institutions and environmental economics, Ashgate, London, 2000 (editor and introduction jointly with A. Nicita)

Institutions and the prospects of environmental economics in Economic institutions and environmental economics, edited by M. Franzini and A. Nicita, Ashgate, London, 2000

Globalization, wages and profits, in Globalization, Institutions and Social Cohesion edited by M. Franzini and F.R. Pizzuti, Springer, 2000

Introduction to the english edition in Globalization, Institutions and Social Cohesion edited by M. Franzini and F.R. Pizzuti, Springer, 2000

John P. Coleman

John P Coleman is a life-long learner who performs many educational functions under the title of 'Academic Resources Coordinator' for Fairmont Private Schools in Anaheim California. Working with from ten to one hundred pubescent students each day, he counsels, tutors, observes classroom teaching and learning, listens, explains, motivates, tells jokes and keeps parents, teachers and administrators informed about the ups and downs of many very talented and tried children entering adulthood.

As part of his administrative duties John coordinates similar student academic assistance efforts on the other six Fairmont campuses while continuing research into the 'International School' and the 'International Baccalaureate Organisation' in order to facilitate Fairmont's membership in these 'mind, body and spirit' boundary breakers.

Mr. Coleman's life has been in and about the 'Academy', its contents, locations, parameters, transferences, limitations, usefulness, quality, inequalities, ideals, ideas, and values. Recently, the "e" world has exploded the once narrow walls of information. Now Pari becomes the 'locus' through which discussion, and exploration adds to its definition by describing academia 2000+ coalescing this Zeitgeist.

John applies knowledge and skill accumulated through nearly forty years of higher education and almost as many years of maverick, inventive teaching methods and strategies exchanged with public and private school students, teachers and administrators at all levels of schooling from K-14.

He began his formal education in the Sciences and English at Fordham College, when a black academic robe worn atop a coat and tie were an absolute necessity for admission to required senior year Philosophy and Theology courses. 'Coursaholic' describes his collection of graduate courses at Columbia Teachers College, U. of Massachusetts, U. of New Hampshire, U. of Southern Maine, Antioch New England, Keene State and most recently, Harvard. He accompanied his wife Jayne Persch to the 1993 Asissi Conference in Italy where he first met F. David Peat.

Deborah Klimburg-Salter

Deborah Klimburg-Salter is Prof. at the Institute for Art History of the University of Vienna. She received her Ph.D. from Harvard University and her habilitation from the University of Vienna. Her main research interest is the Buddhist art of India and the Himalayas; she has conducted extensive field research in northern India (particularly Himachal Pradesh and Ladakh), West Tibet, and Pakistan. Her publications include The Silk Route and the Diamond Path: Esoteric Buddhist Art on the Trans-Himalayan Trade Routes (Los Angeles 1982), The Kingdom of Bðmiyðn: The Buddhist Art and Culture of the Hindu Kush (Naples and Rome 1989), Buddha in Indien (Vienna 1995), Tabo, a Lamp for the Kingdom (Milan 1997 and New York 1998).


To return to list of Participants

Contact F. David Peat

This site designed and maintained by Marcel Gordon