Research Institution

OCCAM – Observatory on Digital Communication - is a Non-Profit Organization, established by UNESCO. It is associated with the United Nations Department of Public Information and in Special Consultative Status at the UN Social and Economic Council (ECOSOC). As such, it has a permanent secretariat at the UNHQ in New York.

Who We Are

OCCAM is the acting Agency of the Infopoverty Programme and it promoted the related Infopoverty Institute at the University of Oklahoma. OCCAM was founded with the mission of fighting poverty as effectively as possible using the new technologies and of promoting sustainable development actions in the Least Developed Countries (LDCs). It works to support the UN strategies for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), former Millennium Development Goals (MDGs, 2000-2015). Furthermore, it is engaged in the transformation that the digital revolution induces on global development.

Our Own Experience

Besides its research functions as Observatory on Digital Communication, OCCAM focuses also on two other main initiatives: the Infopoverty World Conference, held annually since 2001 at the UNHQ and the Infopoverty Programme, that collects the operational suggestions emerging from the conference to turn them into activities in various parts of the world. Many projects have been launched over the years, including ICT Villages to redeem poorer communities (SDG 1) from poverty, eMedMed for telemedicine (SDG 3), World Food & Health Security e-Center for agricultural development and food security (SDG 2).

Pierpaolo Saporito

I am the President and founder of OCCAM, the Observatory for Cultural and Audiovisual Communication. I have been trained as an Architect and urban planner and throughout my fifty years of experience, I also became a communication expert, journalist and director. I have been particularly interested in the study of community life, with a focus in developing countries. My innate curiosity to explore the world and to be continuously updated on the most recent technological innovation led to the foundation of OCCAM. Within the EWA-BELT project, as President of OCCAM, I am the general supervisor of the tasks assigned to the organization.

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In particular, OCCAM will be involved in WP3 for the creation of the PLANTHEAD platform, and in WP6 for the dissemination activities of the project, both through social media and at the UN level.

Simone Merafina

Simone Merafina

I am a System Analyst at OCCAM. I studied International Relations at University of Milan and in 2018 I started my 6 months internship at the Observatory. During my Internship I had the possibility to work with a great team, managing some relevant issues for the organization of the XIX Infopoverty World Conference at the UNHQ. In 2019 I spent my last year of the master's degree in Paris, at SciencesPo, where I had the opportunity to collaborate with the CICT-IFCT at the UNESCO. There, I participated in several meetings which focused on the possibility of implementing the use of technologies in disadvantaged rural communities.

Furthermore, I also coordinated with the OCCAM team the relaunch of the UN Millennium Village in Sambaina, Madagascar. For the EWA-BELT Project I will be Task Leader of WP 3.1 and I will organize the work for the creation of the PLANTHEAD Platform and the management of the website.

Martina Baldessin

I am a 22 years old Master Degree student at Università degli Studi di Milano, specialising in Economics and Political Science. I have started my experience at OCCAM in 2019 during my undergraduate. Since then, I have worked on a series of tasks, mainly related to the organisation of the XX Infopoverty World Conference, the Infopoverty Webinars and various events in preparation to the 20th Edition of the Discussion. 

Throughout my academic career, I have been in contact with several cultures and perspectives and I look forward to working together with such an international team. Within the EWABELT project, I will be managing the coordination of the team. 

Michele Roggero


I am in charge of international relations and research at OCCAM. I studied International Relations at Bologna, Milan, and I did two study exchanges in Maastricht and Krakow. Moreover, I also attended Masters in EU Project Management and Diplomacy. I have worked with OCCAM from 2015 to 2017, supervising and organising three Infopoverty World Conferences at the UN Headquarters and serving as Assistant to President. I also worked at the Permanent Mission of Italy to the UN in New York, at the Belgian-Italian Chamber of Commerce in Brussels and at the European External Action Service, where I did a Blue Book internship in the Consular Crisis Management Unit.

Before coming back to OCCAM, I worked for TBM Group, a Prague-based B2B Events company. Within the EWA-BELT Project, I will be in charge of the relations and coordination between OCCAM and the partners and I will cooperate with the rest of the team in the maximisation of the communication and dissemination strategy.

Giacomo Saporito

I am photographer, graphic designer and digital artist. I collaborate with OCCAM on digital communication campaigns  since 2000, creating posters and graphics for its various activities I collaborate with the International Film and Television International Council (CICT-IFTC) and his activities within the UNESCO. As Art Director of the Infopoverty World Conference,  I create the  websites  and;

I designed graphics for presentations,  posters, and exhibitions for 22 editions of the Euromediterranean Conference on Cinema, and I am Art Director of Poetry on the Lake International Festival.


Since  2017 official photographer on the red carpet of Venice Film festival, realising much appreciated portraits of the stars, held various exhibitions in Milan, Orta, Geneva.

Maria Chiara Scipioni


I have a BA Degree in International Relations and Diplomacy at University of Bologna, with a focus on Climate change and Youth engagement. I'm now completing my MA Degree in International Relations at the University of Milan. In january 2019 I started my 6 months internship at the Observatory. During my Internship I had the possibility to work with a great team, managing some relevant issues for the organization of the XIX Infopoverty World Conference at the UNHQ, the XX Euro-Mediterranean Conference at the 75 Film Festival in Venice and some Webinars online, these opportunities gave me the possibility to collaborate with different institutions, among others United Nations, European Union and Unesco.  

For the EWA-BELT Project I will be Task Leader of 6.2 and I will organize  the communication process. I am passionate about Climate change, global dynamics and International cooperation.