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Elisabetta Lattanzio Illy

Journalist and photographer. UNIDO Goodwill Ambassador. Advocate for equal dignity for all. Founder of Picture of Change, sharing stories of positive change and resilience to raise awareness of the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. 

Elisabetta brings over 25 years of experience as a development-focused photographer and journalist. Her devotion, commitment, and passion for stimulating inclusive and sustainable development led to her appointment as a UNIDO Goodwill Ambassador in 2019 where she is focused on creative industries and food safety. 

The underlying theme of all her projects is the representation and respect of the developing countries and their populations from which we import raw materials. Her work is about connecting these faraway places and galvanizing them to collaborate for their respective growth. The end goal is for local communities to be able to promote their products and self sustain their economies. 

Elisabetta’s career began as a journalist for a lifestyle and wine and food magazine, traveling the world and reporting through her stories and photographic portraits. She discovered her passion for documenting the realities of different cultures with her first book, Aroma del Mondo, exploring the origins of coffee in Ethiopia which was published in 2008 with great success. In 2010 she published Foglie di Tè, uncovering the world of tea in India, China, Japan, and Sri Lanka. 

Elisabetta has been collaborating with UNIDO since 2016 on capacity building projects in developing countries. She focuses on reporting the positive impact that sustainable actions in industrialized countries are having on the quality of the economy, society and environment of developing nations.

Elisabetta often collaborates with the UN and in 2018 she was involved with a project focused on Women’s Empowerment. Her other projects over the last few years include a Water Management initiative for CNHIndustrial, a photo exhibit for the Italian Foreign Ministry, an educational project for Ghanese cocoa farmers and a training program for embroidery for the Kalash women in Pakistan. She partners frequently with The Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana (The National Chamber for Italian Fashion) on sustainability projects.

Elisabetta has made it her mission to document the reality of different cultures and shed light on the challenges and beauty of developing countries and their communities. 

She is a member of the advisory board at Polytechnic University of Milan (POLIMI) for the Sustainable Luxury Academy. She is also a member of the scientific committee for the creation of the first UBS Italian Philanthropy Forum, a member of the Advisory Board of the European Institute of Oncology (IEO), and the World Food Program in Italy.

Elisabetta graduated in International Economy at the University of Trieste. She is married with three daughters.