It is a story that required a great deal of historical research, an incredible story that starts in a small town in the province of Alessandria, Piedmont, travels all over France, particularly to Paris, comes back to Italy and from there branches out into the world.

It is set in the second half of the 1800s, in one of the most fascinating periods in the history of Europe: the age of the Industrial Revolution, of great discoveries, of urban renewal, of the Great Universal Expositions, a time when great cities are projected into the future and human genius finds its highest expression.

Within the World Innovation Fairs, writers, designers, entrepreneurs and artists present their inventions or draw inspiration for new visions that will pave the way for the modern world. Many of them will remain in world history as in the case of Giuseppe Borsalino who through his creations will make his name a myth.

Giuseppe Borsalino’s is a story that serves to reconstruct our socio-cultural roots, because it allows us to rediscover one of the most important Italian entrepreneurs, a forerunner of “Made in Italy” in the world, but above all a man of universal principles and values to whom the whole of Italy owes so much.

He was a young boy from nowhere who ran away from home at the age of thirteen, sought employment in several hat factories in Italy, then in France, obtained a hatter’s certificate in Paris, and was able to build an empire but never betrayed his inner ethic and, in fact. made his city, not just his factory, a happy island in which people produced and lived in perfect balance and equality, meeting the needs of all.

At a time when everyone is seemingly looking for role models to inspire them, but is unwilling to devote effort and perseverance over time to achieve them, when identities are uncertain and confused as a result of globalization and mass media the figure of Giuseppe Borsalino can therefore be fundamental for the new generations, who carry within them the same questions, the same anxieties as then.

At a time in history when attempts at utopian cities, that is, happy places in which justice reigns and from which inequities are banished, were springing up all over the world, Borsalino was an unwitting utopian, but the only utopian who managed to truly make a small part of the world a happy place.
Thanks to him in his city, not only in his factory, people lived in perfect balance and equality, meeting everyone’s needs. He was the owner but also the first worker, and his workers were his family to the point that, concerned about how they would live once their employment ended, he established an in-house pension fund at the factory when there was not even talk of pension legislation yet.

Through his life, Joseph B. showed that while it is not possible to create a perfect society, however, it is possible to decrease unhappiness, but first one must learn to get out of the logic of forced altruism and selfishness, for the first rule to create one’s own Heaven on Earth is to have the will and above all to feel the need to work for a collective good.