Street of Genes - Daring conference in Italy

Sjan-translator-dyslexiaIn 2017 Sjan Verhoeven was asked to give a lecture on an Italian international conference on dyslexia in Modena. It has taken place at the end of November 2017. The conference was organized by Vittorio Melotti, a biologist and dyslexic, an enthusiastic organizer who does his own things outside the existing frameworks and thus shows great courage. This can also be seen in the diversity of speakers on these days of 'Street of Genes', as the organization of Vittorio is called. For us Dutch visitors a professional translator was available on the spot to translate all Italian lectures: Lucia Melotti (on the picture - no family of Vittorio).

Celebrate Diversity !!!!

This is something that almost all speakers had in common: do not let the standard of the majority determine the general standard, but celebrate and honour people in their diversity and therefore in their qualities!
The speech of Professor in Neuropsychology Johanna Blom (a Dutch professor who works at the University of Modena) about how the educational system can connect better to children who think differently, also ended with this conclusion.


Look at for example at Nicola Tesla (inventor and electrical engineer), Guglielmo Marconi (wireless telegraph) and Leonardo Da Vinci (no introduction needed), famous Italian dyslexics. It is their differentness in their way of thinking that led to their great achievements! Hearing these big names always gives great consternation in the room because it is often not known that they were also dyslexic.

Good food

We can't deny it, we also went to Italy for the superb food!


Johanna Blom, Gertrudie Boersen, Giacomo Guaraldi, Vittorio Melotti and Sjan Verhoeven on the evening after the first day of the conference before having a really good Italian meal.


There is still much to be gained in Italy, especially because of the tendency to look at what dyslexics cannot do instead of looking at their qualities and talents. The need is great to look at dyslexic role models and learn from them. At least Vittorio is certainly a great example to us with this wonderful event!

You can go there too. Another conference is coming in November in 2019. Click here for more information. If you want to register, send an email to: .

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