The world is made up of over one hundred countries. Those countries are what make the world a melting pot of diversity, creativity, productivity, and fun. Of all the countries a person could explore, one would like to present an introduction of Italy. This paper is intended to give the reader insight on the culture, business, and international relations of Italy. Those International relations are specifically in comparison to the United States. Both countries rely on one another. For instance, it is common to see Italians sporting their American made clothing, and it is common to see Americans admiring their Italian made art. Their codependence of one another is what makes their relationship so strong. Common Knowledge of Italy
Italy is known for its mountainous terrain that is surrounded by water. More commonly it is known for its delicious Italian cuisine. The culture of Italy is family oriented and group driven. Italians take pride in their relationships with family, friends, and co-workers, and this is especially true for those individuals living in southern Italy (Stefaner, Ryzienski, & Reichelt, 2007). Italian Population
In 2007 Italy had a population size of 58.1 million people (Italy: Population, 2008). It is ranked to have the 22nd largest population worldwide (Croce et al, 2009, p. 153). After more than a decade of experiencing fewer births than deaths, the population has continued to grow (Italy: Population, 2008). This growing trend has been influenced by immigration to the area. The number of people from overseas who decided to take residence in Italy increased from 4.5% in 2005 to 8% in 2011 (“Italy economy”, 2012). A majority of those immigrants move to northern Italy from the following regions: Albania, Morocco, Romania, China, and Ukraine (Italy: Population, 2008). This growth happened despite the fact that Italy has a large debt burden that exceeds its annual calculation of their gross domestic product (GDP) (That Sinking Feeling”, 2011). Italian Industries
Although Italy seems to have a rather dense population, economically, the size of its industries is surprising. Commercially, Italy is known for its growing industry of small firms (Bresciani, 2010, p. 143). Italy is said to have one of the largest economies throughout the world (Bresciani, 2010, p. 143). However, almost all Italian firms have less than one hundred employees, and nearly 90% of the companies employ no more than twenty employees (Bresciani, 2010, p. 143). This is partially a result of the economic crisis that effected Italy over a decade ago which led to workers either being cut hours of time worked or losing their employment completely (Iapadre, 2011). Companies were forced by the struggling economy to downsize. The results of downsizing somehow divided the Italian people amongst the northern and southern regions of Italy (Pearlstein, 2012). Interestingly enough, one region is growing in productivity while the other region is not, and it’s causing the entire country to experience negative effects (Pearlstein, 2012). The domino effect continues to happen and because of the factors listed above, many companies have moved elsewhere to have a better economic outlook (Pearlstein, 2012). Poverty
Unfortunately, in 2011 it was reported by the Italian National Statistics Bureau (ISTAT) that almost 20% of Italians are “at risk of poverty” and, since 2009, has continued to remain constant. When compared on an international level, these statistics show that Italy is the worst in this category; they are even below the annual average for all European regions (De Belvis et al, 2012). Literacy Rates
Literacy is a building block to almost everything in life. It is important because it allows people to further their education and better themselves. For this reason, countries pride themselves on their own literacy rates because it is a reflection...