Former Prime Minister of Italy & Former President of the European Commission
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Romano Prodi was born in Scandiano, Italy, in 1939 and studied Law at the Catholic University of Milan. After taking postgraduate courses at the Universites of Milan and Bologna and the London School of Economics he was visiting professor at Harvard University and the Stanford Research Institute. He began his academic career at the Faculty of Political Science at the University of Bologna where he worked as assistant (1963), associate (1966) and then as a full Professor (1971–1999) of Industrial Organization and Industrial Policy.
From 1974 to 1978, he was the chairman of Il Mulino publishing house. In 1981 he founded Nomisma, one of Italy's leading economic research societies and chaired its Scientific Committee until 1995. From November 1978 to March 1979, Romano Prodi was the Italian Minister of Industry. In February 1995, he founded the Ulivo Coalition and ran as a candidate for federal elections in April 1996 in which the Ulivo Coalition defeated the Center-Right coalition. The Prodi government remained in office until October 1998, during which it succeeded in making the country join the Euro currency.
In March 1999, the European Council elected Romano Prodi to serve as President of the European Commission in Brussels. During his presidency, the European Union adopted some of the historic decisions of the European Union (e.g. introduction of the Euro, enlargement to 25). In 2005, Romano Prodi was elected leader of the "Unione" Center-Left coalition, heading the Ulivo list for the general election in 2006. From 05/2006 until 05/2008 he was again Prime Minister of Italy. Since then, Romano Prodi has been the President of the Foundation for Worldwide Cooperation and has also been named Chairman of the United Nations–African Union High Level Panel for Peacekeeping in Africa.
Romano Prodi’s career has led to a vast oeuvre of scientific publications as well as numerous prestigious honours, distinctions and acknowledgements. He lives in Bologna, is married and has two sons and four grandchildren.
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