Italy: Demographics

    Welcome to Italy


        Physical Geography

        Italy is located in the northern hemisphere and is one of the most southern most and centered countries in Europe.  The Italian penninsula juts into the Mediterranean sea causing the temperature to be quite moderate (wikipedia).
        Italy borders four seperate countries to the north.  These four countries are Switzerland, France, Austria ans Slovenia.  Being located on the mediterranean seas to south it directly borders no countries too the south.  Italy has three separate pieces of land that are not directly connected to the main part of Italy.  These are Sicily which located in the mediterranean, Sardinia which is also located in the mediterranean and Campione d'Italia which is a small, Italian State located in Switzerland.  Inside of Italy there are also two seperate, independant states called San Marino and Vatican City(wikipedia).
        The entire area of all of Italy including the islands and states in other countries, Italy is 331,308 square   
    kilometres.  Of this land 2.4% of it is fresh water(wikpedia).
            The capital city of Italy is Rome and is also the city with the highest population in Italy at a total of 2, 563, 241.  Following Rome is Milano, Napoli, Torino and Palermo.  In total their are 48 different cities in Italy with a total population that exceeds 100, 00 people (Mongabay)



         The main language that is spoken by most of the people living in Italy is obviously Italian.  Italian is also the official language of Italy.  Italian, the language is related to the tuscan language but being a direct descendant of Latin, it is more closely related to it (spain exchange).
        When Italy came together as one country (1961) Italian was used mostly used for writting and each different area also had a seperate dialect or dialetto in Italian(spain exchange).
        Other languages spoken in Italy include a small portion of the people speaking German, French and Slovenian but the largest group of people who do not speak Italian are those who speak Sardinian(spain exchange).


        The current government in Italy is what one would call a unitary parliamentary republic.  In Italy there is both a president and prime minster leading this government.  The president is currently Giorgio Napolitano and the prime minister is Silvio Berlisconi (wikipedia).
        A unitary parliamentary republic is a combination of a unitary government and a parliamentary government.  A unitary government is one that is governed as one single state and any subnational wings of government only have powers that the national government chooses to delegate to that division.  A parliamenatry republic government is one that is a republic with only minor distinctions between the executive and legislative parts of government.  That means the head of the executive has almost complete control over the country (google define).
        Therefore a unitary parliamentary republic is a government ruled almost solely by the president and prime minister with little to no power in other parts of government.


        Italy has a very rich culture full of food, families and traditions.  Also an important part of their culture is timelessness as Rome is known as the eternal city.
        It is not only in Rome where culture is such a large aspect where the Eternal city  truly does seen eternal with the ancient structures and feel of the city but also in the canals of Venice and the flowing beauty of florence woth the paintings by Michalangelo.  By walking through a single street in such a culturally rich area can make one understand the importance and depth of culture in Italy (life in Italy).
        Food is a very important aspect of the individual culture displayed in Italy with the pasta (pasta), pizza (pizza), vino (Wine) and olives (olives).  Italian culinary creations include dishes such as risotto and antipasto.  These dishes are wonderful examples of Italian cuisine but each of the 20 provinces in Italy has a seperate food and wine that truly captures the essance of Italy (Italian canadaian community).
        Another inportant aspect of Italian culture is families and traditions.  In Italy man elderly stay with their children their whole life and a family is the most important thing that one can have.  Traditions include family, visiting friends and relatives, their proud language, music and religion (Italian canadaian community).


      The Italian economy is currently at a decent level.  The GDP is at 2.118 trillion dollars and the GDP per capita is sitting at 35, 435 dollars.  Italy used to be a country that produced mainly agriculture as a source of income but after world war 2 it made a change to a largely industrial country and has the 5th largest industrial production in the world and is part of the G20 and was part of the G8 before the G20.  
        Italy has very few natural resources and the few they have are mostly located in the Po Valley (see picture).  Italy produces money through mainly manufacturing (TDS).
        Much of Italies GDP actually comes from illegal underground economy.  A whole 27% of Italies economy is illegal.  So much of Italies GDP is due to the underground because the economy that is underground does not have to pay any taxes that a normal economy would have to pay.  Though it is good for the overall GDP the underground economy causes a loss of revenue for local strands of government (TDS).