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Pia Parolin

by | Nov 27, 2023

In this series, we are interviewing members of our club, so that you can get to know each other a bit better. Today we talk with Dr. Pia Parolin about her life and work in the region.

What brought you to the French Riviera?

I have been living in Biot and Cannes for 18 years, motivated by the sun, the climate, the Mediterranean lifestyle. It was not difficult to work remote for me. Most of my research is in tropical countries like Brazil, and the rest is working from home, linked to research institutes in France and abroad.

Could you tell us about your professional career? What do or did you do for work?

I am a PhD in biology. And I was a professor for ecology in the universities of Hamburg, Manaus and Nice. I make research on climatic changes and sustainable use and conservation of tropical forests and wetlands. My special focus lies on the Amazon region.

Furthermore, I am a renowned photographer and book author. Every year I expose my photos on several continents, I lead workshops and take part at festivals and podium discussions.

Recently I merged my two passions, ecology and photography, to enhance my communication about the importance of freshwater through photography.

What does your company do?

I have always been employed by research institutes, around the globe, analysing relevant themes linked to water cycles, forest growth, and biodiversity conservation. I’ve also researched solutions to find alternatives to pesticides.

Why did you decide to start your own business?

For my photographic business, I am self-employed, I have my own little business in order to be artistically free. I sell high quality fine art prints, workshops, I give lectures and talks, live and online. And I also make personal and group coachings for photography and the development of the photographic personality. I teach photography for beginners with cameras or cell phones.

Could you share your thoughts on the club and events?

So far, I attended only a few gatherings, and it was wonderful to meet all these open minded people from all over Europe and the world. Everybody is curious and ready to listen and speak, has an interesting life story to tell, so for me, it is an absolute enrichment to be a part of this group now.

What is your best advice to others thinking about living or working on the French Riviera?

I think it is useful to be aware of the Mediterranean lifestyle and the French mentality if you want to live a happy and efficient life in this region. Speaking French definitely opens the doors.

To me, it was fundamental in order to become a member of the normal life in this region, instead of living in parallel foreigners’ lives.

What else would you like to share with the reader?

I am just thankful to be a part of this, and to be able to meet all these interesting people. It’s so easy to just follow the instructions and go to a nice place, where we meet. And I am sure there is a basis for new friendships.

Fun facts about Pia Parolin!

Since when do you live on the French Riviera?


Where are you originally from?

Milan, family from Venice, Italy and Cologne, Germany.

What languages do you speak?

English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese & Spanish – all fluent in written and spoken language 🙂

What is your favourite wine?

I do not have this one favourite wine, I love Italian wines from Piedmont.

What is your favourite spot on the French Riviera?

I love Nice as a city, and I love the Esterel for hiking but also all the other cities and beautiful spots: Cap d’Antibes, Iles de Lerins, Loup valley and the cities like Monaco, Cannes, Theoule sur Mer, Gourdon, Biot…

What French word do you find difficult to pronounce?

Cuillère 🙂 French people always laugh when I say it

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