Engineering: leader della Digital Transformation

Corporate Social Responsibility

Programming the Future: digital inclusion and social responsibility

Engineering is a Benefactor Founding Partner of "Programming the Future", an initiative of MI and CINI for the dissemination of digital culture in schools through the introduction of the basic concepts of IT and computational thinking.

In 2013 the United States launched a massive campaign for the introduction of computational thinking in schools of all types and levels. The campaign, called, was very successful not only in the USA, so much so that in 2014 it saw the participation of about 90 million students (48% of which were girls) and teachers from all over the world in the initiative Hour of Code.

In Italy, thanks to the initiative “Programming the Future”, partner companies assist MI (Ministry of Education) and CINI (National Inter-University IT Consortium) in a global experimentation of the structural introduction in schools of the basic concepts of information technology through games and easy-to-use tools. The initiative came at a critical time for Italian schools and for the future of our children and future generations. In perspective, an appropriate education in computational thinking inserted as a pervasive element in education in the various Italian school systems, will be essential to ensuring that the new generations of citizens grow up with the awareness that the digital element can be considered a “friend” and support tool for professional and private life.

An essential aspect for the success of the project is the provision on the part of partner companies of technology expert volunteers, to support teachers in the planning and provision of introductory events and training.

Engineering is part of this network, with the qualification of “Benefactor” and with approximately 40 volunteer employees throughout Italy.


Our volunteers for digital education

Corporate volunteering is one of the cornerstones of our company's commitment to generating social value. Volunteering is a way to respond to the specific needs of the community and is an opportunity for employees to become familiar with the work of other organizations. For some years now, we have adopted this approach, in which groups of employees from the Research & Innovation area support digital education projects in Italian schools during their working hours.

Also working alongside teachers in Italian schools is our team of expert volunteers, who are passionately committed to teaching children and young people about the creative potential behind the world of computing and the use of technological tools, with the aim of improving their daily lives and supporting initiatives against bullying, cyberbullying and technology addiction.

At this time, computer science is not offered in our country as a specific classroom subject, while in all schools in the UK, training on the cultural and scientific aspects of computer science has been mandatory since 2014. In France and Denmark computer science is on the Government's agenda, and in the United States, it has been included in the school curriculum since 2015. To bridge this educational gap, we have proposed ourselves as an active part of the "Programming the Future" project that provides schools with simple, fun and easily accessible tools to teach computational thinking and basic computer science concepts to students in a game context, turning them into active participants in technology.

Our volunteers offer unplugged lessons, without the use of computers, on coding activities with Scratch and experiments with educational robots (such as Clementoni DOC and M-BOT). In 2020, because of the stress that distance learning has placed on the lives of students, particular attention was paid to the issues of "Safety on the Web" and the problems related to bullying, cyberbullying and mental disorders such as depression and hikikomori, resulting from the misuse of computer systems. Our volunteers have provided students, teachers and families with information to understand the risks of browsing the web, because the digital experience must be seen as personal enrichment without the dangers related to pedophilia or cyberbullying.

Information technology and social responsibility 2021

In 2021, we have also been a partner of the "Informatics and Social Responsibility" competition, organized by the Italian Ministry of Education, in collaboration with the Italian National Interuniversity Consortium for Informatics (CINI).

The initiative was created to inspire students to create a computer project focused on three of the goals of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: Health and Well-Being (Goal 3), Quality Education (Goal 4) and Decent Work and Economic Growth (Goal 8).

The competition, aimed at preschools, primary and secondary I and II state and equivalent schools in Italy and abroad, is part of the Project "Program the Future," which provides schools and teachers with effective and accessible tools to train students in the scientific and cultural foundations of computer science. Starting from a successful experience launched in the United States in 2013 in which about 300 million students and teachers around the world have participated so far, Italy was one of the first countries to experiment with the systematic introduction in schools of the basic concepts of computer science through programming (coding), thus involving nearly 3,000,000 students, 38,000 teachers and 7,000 schools throughout Italy in the school year 2019-2020.

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