Research Centr



Executive Secretary
SID - Sociedad para el Desarrollo Internacional


Italian/Argentine citizen, born in Rome, Italy


Studied Economics at the University of Parma, and followed post-graduate courses in Development Economics with Gunnar Myrdal, as well as History of Art and International Law in Rome.

Italian mother tongue, fluent English, French and Spanish, good Portuguese, and average German.


Started his professional career as a Research Assistant in International Law at the University of Parma.

Active as an international officer with Italy's National Students Association and with the Young Christian Democrats, Savio was responsible for the Christian Democratic Party's relations with developing countries before becoming international press chief for Italian Prime Minister Aldo Moro.

His career in the news media started with Italy's daily Il Popolo and he went on to become Director for News Services for Latin America with RAI, Italy's national broadcaster. After the 1973 coup d'etat in Chile, Savio left Italian politics to pursue journalism. He received a number of awards for TV documentaries, including the national Italian award, the St. Vincent prize. He has also produced five films, two of which were presented at the Venice and Cannes film festivals, and published several books, the latest of which is Verbo America, dealing with the cultural identity of Latin America.

In 1964, Savio established Inter Press Service (IPS), a non-profit co-operative of journalists and experts specialising in global communications for development. IPS grew to become the world's fifth-largest news agency, providing daily balanced, in-depth and analytical coverage of the development process. It also offers communication services to improve South-South and South-North exchange and executes projects with international partners to open up communication channels to all social sectors. IPS has been recognised by the United Nations, holding NGO consultative status (category I) with ECOSOC.

Since 1973, Savio has been a consultant on information and communication issues for many developing countries, designing the National Information Systems Network (ASIN) for Latin America and the Caribbean and the UNESCO-supported Latin American Features Service (ALASEI). Savio is the founder and managing director of the Technological Information Pilot System (TIPS), a major U.N. project to implement and foster technological and economic co-operation between developing countries. He was also instrumental in setting up the Women's Feature Service (WFS), initially an IPS service, now an independent NGO with headquarters in New Delhi. He has also been actively involved in promoting exchanges between regional information services, such as between ALASEI and the Organisation of Asian News Agencies (OANA) and between the Pan-African News Agency (PANA) and the Federation of Arab News Agencies (FANA).

Savio has been actively involved at the technical level with international communication issues, introducing the Development Press Bulletin Service Tariff in UNESCO's International Commission for the Study of Communication Problems (the MacBride Commission).

He has also worked closely in the field of information and communication with a variety of international organisations, such as UNDP, UNEP, UNFPA, UNICEF and UNITAR. After several years of being a member of the governing council of the Society for International Development (SID), the oldest international organisation of the civil society on development, he has been elected Secretary General for three terms. The present term, under the chair of Boutros Boutros Ghali, will end in the year 2001. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of the North-South Centre of the Council of Europe.

Since October 1999 he has been appointed Senior Advisor for Strategies and Communication to the Director General of the International Labour Organization. He has also been co-opted at the same date in the Board of Training Centre for Regional Integration.

Since February 2000 he was appointed Consultant for Internal Communications Strategy to Ms. Catherine Bertini, Executive Director of World Food Programme.


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Secretariado de Manejo del Medio Ambiente
para América Latina y el Caribe

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