In this introductory article, the author explains the background to the Seminar on the “The idea of University” by outlining three converging factors that led to the birth of the Sophia University Institute. In doing so, he also draws upon the experience of its first year of existence. In revisiting the original meaning of the “idea” of a university, its roots and developments, and exploring the indications provided by Chiara Lubich, the author reflects on the place, task and way of the Sophia University Institute in order to provide a definition of the “common work” that inspires its professors and students. Their experience is that of being at the school of the “only one Teacher”, a school rooted in the living context of the today’s humanity. He describes how the Institute strives to articulate the gift of Wisdom both in terms of formation and research in the various disciplinary fields in line with a twofold methodological option: the primacy of the self-giving of truth, and the way of dialogue within which the human person lives, loves and studies.
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