I met Mario Pellegatta and Giorgio Zambeletti in 2000. Gabriele Albertini, the Mayor of Milan, had told me about this company called Ad Hoc the previous year. I had just been elected Mayor of Padua and I wanted the work of my Administration to start from an in-depth analysis of the city and its needs. I talked to them, and they proposed that I promote a General Assembly, a completely new formula for Padua and for Italy. After a year of intense preparation – involving all areas of the city’s life (from town planning to culture, from commerce to social issues…) – on 27, 28 and 29 September 2001 Padua became a national player. The results we have achieved together have been of fundamental importance for all the years of my term as Mayor and have been taken as a model by many other Italian cities, with particular regard to the delicate balance to be maintained between the public and private sectors. Ad Hoc’s work has been invaluable and very productive at every stage of the job, from the design to the actual implementation and the communication of the results. That experience allowed us quickly to develop a relationship of great harmony, which proved to be essential for the effective and rapid development of such a complex project. Our relationship has remained constant over time, and that same harmony now underpins our collaboration with the Foundation for Advanced Biomedical Research – VIMM (Veneto Institute of Molecular Medicine), an organisation that Ad Hoc has been able to promote and make known. I wish Mario, Giorgio and all the staff at Ad Hoc continued success in identifying and anticipating the ever faster and more unexpected changes in the world around us: this will be the key to success for the next 25 years. Three characteristics to define Ad Hoc: the ability to listen; the ability to give a sense of security; discretion and professionalism.