The 5th national conference of APECS Italy took place on November 8-9, 2023, in Venice. The event was made possible by a collaboration with the Italian Institute of Polar Sciences (CNR-ISP) and the Venice Institute of Science, Literature and Arts (Istituto Veneto di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti). This year, the national conference was formally dedicated to the conquest of Mount Everest as 2023 is the seventieth anniversary of Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay's ascent to the summit (May 29th, 1953).
For the occasion, Professor Claudio Smiraglia opened the conference with a speech entitled "EVEREST 1953-2023: seventy years of mountaineering and glaciological research" dealing with the history and scientific research carried out in the field in this particular area. The event also attracted a lot of interest thanks to the participation of Omar Di Felice, an ultra cyclist, in video connection from South America where he was waiting to leave for his attempt to cross the Antarctic continent by bicycle. Di Felice spoke about his past experiences and preparation for this new challenge and offered numerous ideas on the dissemination of science to a wider audience with different backgrounds. The conference proved successful with engaging discussions on diverse topics from both scientific and outreach perspectives. Approximately 40 individuals, including students, PhD students, and postdocs, attended the event both in person and remotely, with an overall higher attendance than any other previous event. A total of 16 institutions were represented. The talks had an interdisciplinary focus, with speakers representing a range of fields within the polar sciences, from glaciology to oceanography and life sciences. As well as providing the opportunity to share the most recent research activities of APECS members, the event promoted new collaborations among early-career scientists. It encouraged new and existing members to propose and discuss ideas for upcoming initiatives within APECS Italy.