With Italian Unity social issues exploded, a great change was needed.
Luckily, the province of Reggio managed to emerge from the grip of agricultural conservatism thanks to the great cooperative phenomena, triggered by the mutual benefit societies, which proved able to cover the needs of changes to production and helped to form an active mentality in the working class.
Furthermore, while on a cultural level the first half of 20th century was troubled by the two World War, in Reggio Emilia historical studies were consolidated, the civic institution were established and the spirit of resistance lived on: during the twenty years of fascism, Reggio people carried on the fight for freedom.
In the second half of the century, a critical awareness of cultural assets emerged and led to major restoration operations and a relaunch of the city suited to its illustrious history: the University was founded, the Panizzi library modernized and Palazzo Magnani was established as a permanent venue for exhibition.
The renewal still goes on in 2000s, when the city is determined to become modern and welcoming; the objective has surely been reached with the three bridges and the TAV high-speed railway station designed by the Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, the New Palace Museum, the event Fotografia Europea and the project “Invitation to…”, in occasion of which 4 world famous artists ( Robert Morris, Sol LeWitt, Luciano Fabro and Eliseo Mattiacci) created four permanent works of art located in historical areas of the city.