DR WALTER RIVA INTERVIEW
Director of the Astronomical Observatory in Righi, Genoa
Erasmus Programme European Schools Go Green
INTERVIEW TO DR WALTER RIVA Director of the Astronomical Observatory in Righi, Genoa
QUESTIONS ASKED BY THE STUDENTS OF
GALILEO GALILEI TECHNICAL HIGH SCHOOL
AFTER A WORKSHOP ON THE SOLAR SYSTEM
DOCTOR WALTER RIVA – BIOGRAPHY
Walter Riva has been dealing with science publications, especially astronomy, for ages.
He has been invited to lecture at many conferences and guided observations of the sky, both with
the naked eye and the telescope.
He got a University Degree at the Faculty of Economics and Business with a final thesis on
Geography (1997), he got a Master in New Media and Communication at the University of Rome
Tor Vergata (2000) and a Master in Communication of Science of SISSA in Trieste (2004), getting
the highest score, with a final thesis on Planetaria entitled “The communication of science in the
world of Planetaria”. He has collaborated with the Observatory of Saint Barthélemy for the
construction of a 10 meters Planetarium in Valle d’Aosta.
He is the Director of the Astronomical Observatory of Righi and the President of the Planetarium of
Righi (Genoa) by managing the organization of all the public activities and the implementation of
the permanent didactic exhibition “The Garden of the Sun”.
He is a freelance journalist and one of the partners of UGIS (Unione Giornalisti Italiani Scientifici)
and has collaborated with some scientific magazines like “La Macchina del Tempo” (“The Time
Machine”) and “Astronomia” (“Astronomy”), and also with the De Agostini publishing house for
the encyclopedic work “Star Observer”.
He writes articles and news on astronomy for the Genoese newspaper “Il Secolo XIX”.
He is the author of the book “Breve storia dell’Universo” (“A short outline of the Universe”)
published by CUEN in Naples, of the children book “Dentro lo Spazio” (“Inside Space”) edited by
La Biblioteca, and the book “Storia di un raggio di luce” (The story of a sun beam”) issued by the
Gruppo B publishing house.
He coordinated and trained the scientific animators of the Festival of Science in Genoa in 2003, he
was in charge of organizing the inauguration of the Festival in 2004, and managed the activities
about astronomy of the Festival editions of 2003, 2004 and 2005; in 2006 he organized the cycle of
conferences “Dai confini del Sistema Solare all’Antartide” (“From the borders of the Solar System
to Antarctica”) held at the Aquarium of Genoa and the scientific exhibition “Mondi di ghiaccio”
(“Worlds of Ice”) at the National Museum of Antarctica; for the Festival edition of 2008 he set a
cycle of meetings “C’era una volta l’Universo” (“Once upon a time the Universe”) held at the
Aquarium of Genoa, and the cycle “Orizzonti dello spazio-tempo” (“Horizons of spacetime”) in
collaboration with the Faculty of Mathematics Physics and Natural Sciences in 2010.
He coordinated the participation of the University of Genoa in the 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
editions of the Festival of Science.
In collaboration with the Aquarium of Genoa he organizes cycles of public conferences about
scientific topics on astronomy and related subjects every year.
Since March 2008 he has been the editorial coordinator of the science publication “Le Stelle” (The
Stars”), a monthly magazine dealing with astronomic culture, issued by the Gruppo B publishing
house, being its editorial director from February 2018 to October 2019.
Since November 2019 he has been the director of the magazine “Cosmo” (“Cosmos”), born from
the fusion of “Le Stelle” (“The Stars”) and “Nuovo Orione” (“New Orion”).
He is the manager of the events and communication department of the University of Genoa, for
which he also organizes scientific conferences and public engagement events.