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Results: 305

Lucia Votano

STEM area: Physics

Competences: experimental physics of astroparticlesm, experimental physics of particles

Keywords: astroparticles, gran sasso workshops, infn, juno, neutrinos, nuclear physics, particle physics, particles, work

Region: Lazio


Research Director, associate to Frascati National Laboratory of INFN (Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare).


Professional career

Born in Calabria, Italy, in November 1947, LV graduated with summa cum laude in Physics at University 'La Sapienza' (Roma) in 1971.

She became staff research scientist at INFN - Frascati National Laboratory (LNF) in 1975, Senior Researcher in 1988 and Research Director in 2000.

As an experimental particle and astroparticle physicist, she has been active at Frascati National Laboratory, CERN-Geneva, DESY-Hamburg, Gran Sasso Laboratory, performing physics studies as well as constructing and running large detector systems.

From 1999 through 2004 she was the Director of the LNF Research Division.

From 2009 to 2012 she was the Director of the Gran Sasso Laboratory (LNGS) in Italy, first woman to be appointed in this position.

LNGS is the largest (17800 m2) underground laboratory in the world for astroparticle physics and the most advanced in terms of length, complexity and completeness of its infrastructures, hosting 20 cutting edge international experiments. More than 950 scientists from 29 different Countries take part in the LNGS experimental activities and constitute its large international scientific community.


Scientific results

The research activity of Lucia Votano concerns astroparticle physics, a field at the intersection of astronomy, particle physics and cosmology, addressing questions relating to the micro-cosmos of elementary particles and their fundamental interactions and, at the same time, the macro-cosmos, the birth and evolution of the universe.

In particular her main interest turned to neutrinos, the most mysterious, enigmatic and mystifying particle among the ones that make up the Universe. The neutrino’s interaction with matter is truly tiny and one the most intriguing results of the last decades is the evidence, by measuring the phenomenon of neutrino oscillations, that they do have a mass, although very small.

In order to properly comprehend the mechanism of the oscillation; various neutrino sources, both natural (the Sun or other stars) and artificial (particle accelerators or nuclear power plants) can be used.

LV started working for the Large Volume Detector (LVD) experiment at LNGS, designed to detect neutrinos from gravitational stellar collapses within our entire Galaxy.

Afterwards she has joined the OPERA experiment that has provided the first and firm direct evidence of the muon-neutrino oscillation into tau-neutrino. The detector was located in the underground Gran Sasso Laboratory, 730 km away from the neutrino source at Geneva and exposed to the CNGS (Cern neutrinos to Gran Sasso) pure muon-neutrino beam.

The study of the intrinsic properties of neutrino is of prime interest in particle physics and has provided by now the only direct and undisputed experimental evidence of the inadequacy of the successful Standard Model of elementary particles and interactions.

Presently she is member of JUNO (Jiangmen underground Neutrino Observatory) Collaboration, a giant multi-purpose neutrino experiment under construction in Kaiping, Jiangmen, Guangdong Province (South China), 53 km far from two nuclear power plants, and aiming at the determination of the neutrino mass hierarchy. The 20 kton liquid scintillation detection volume, together with the excellent energy resolution, will allow JUNO to address many physics goals related to the observations of neutrino events of astrophysical and terrestrial origin

Editorial work and publications

The research activities have resulted in about 300 papers on international scientific journals and in presentations at international conferences. Among them:

(2018) M. Reguzzoni et al., GIGJ: a crustal gravity model of the Guangdong Province for predicting the geoneutrino signal at the JUNO experiment.
arXiv:1901.01945 [physics.geo-ph].

(2018) N. Agafonova et al. Final Results of the OPERA Experiment on nt Appearance in the CNGS Neutrino Beam.
Phys.Rev.Lett. 120 (2018) no.21, 211801, Erratum: Phys.Rev.Lett. 121 (2018) no.13, 139901.

(2018) N. Agafonova et al. Final results of the search for nm  n oscillations with the OPERA detector in the CNGS beam.
JHEP 1806 (2018) 151.

(2018) N. Agafonova et al. Measurement of the cosmic ray muon flux seasonal variation with the OPERA detector.
arXiv:1810.10783 [hep-ex].

(2018) F. Riggi et al. Time and orientation long-distance correlations between extensive air showers detected by the MRPC telescopes of the EEE Project
Nuovo Cim. C40 (2018) no.6, 196.

(2018) M. Grassi et al. Charge reconstruction in large-area photomultipliers
JINST 13 (2018) no.02, P02008.

(2018) A. Paoloni, A. Mengucci, M. Spinetti, M. Ventura, L. Votano.

Streamer studies in Resistive Plate Chambers

arXiv:1806.03443 [physics.ins-det].

(2016) Fengpeng An et al. Neutrino Physics with JUNO.
J.Phys. G43 (2016) no.3, 030401.

(2015) N. Agafonova et al. Discovery of $\tau$ Neutrino Appearance in the CNGS Neutrino Beam with the OPERA Experiment
Phys.Rev.Lett. 115 (2015) no.12, 121802.
(2015) N. Agafonova et al. Limits on muon-neutrino to tau-neutrino oscillations induced by a sterile neutrino state obtained by OPERA at the CNGS beam
JHEP 1506 (2015) 069.


Lucia Votano has also published two scientific books for general public:

“Il fantasma dell’universo-Che cos’è il neutrino”, Collana La Città della Scienza, Carocci editore 2015 and 

“La via della seta. La fisica da Enrico Fermi alla Cina” Collana i Dialoghi, Di Renzo editore 2017.

In April 2010 has been awarded by the President of the Italian Republic of the official title of

 ” Commendatore al merito Della Repubblica Italiana” for scientific services.


Laura Zanfrini

International politics area

Competences: governance of migration and integration processes, immigration, interethnic cohabitation and citizenship, international migrations, migration policies, relationships between organizations and social contexts, social differences in society and in the labour market

Keywords: interethnic relations, labor market, social differences and social inequalities, social innovation

Region: Lombardy


Full Professor for the Scientific-Disciplinary Sector of Sociology of Economic Processes at the Catholic University of Milan; Director of the WWELL Research Center (Work, Welfare, Enterprise, Lifelong Learning).

Professional career

After graduating in Political Science at the Catholic University of Milan (best graduate of the year), Laura Zanfrini obtained (1995) a PhD in “Sociology and Methodology of social sciences”, with a thesis on local development in the French experience, evaluated with a judgment of “excellence”.

In 1998 she was hired as Assistant Professor in Sociology of economic processes. She entered the role of Associate Professor in 2005 and then, in 2010, she became Full Professor. She currently teaches “Sociology of Migration and Inter-ethnic Coexistence” and “Organizations, Environment and Social Innovation” at the School of Political and Social Sciences of the Catholic University. She is also coordinator of the Master degree in “Labour and business management” (a course that aims to prepare “enlightened” managers, who combine professional skills with a particular sensitivity to the social and ethical implications of economic action). She is also Director of the Summer School “Human Mobility and Global Justice”.

In addition to a rich scientific research activity (see next point), she has accumulated an extensive teaching experience, both in the academic context (as a professor of economic sociology, sociology of labour, sociology of migration, sociology of differences and inequalities), and in the extra-academic context (as an expert involved in initiatives promoted by public administrations, local authorities, school districts, trade unions, cultural associations, religious institutions, NGO).

Since its foundation in 1991, she has been involved in the activities of the ISMU Foundation as a member of the technical-scientific committee, Head of the Economics and Labour Department and Director of the Documentation Center.

Since its establishment (2010), she has been the Director of the WWELL Research Center (Work, Welfare, Enterprise, Lifelong Learning), at the Department of Sociology of the Catholic University, where a series of applied research, consultancy, and training initiatives are developed in continuity with a long tradition sensitive to the business ethic, sustainability, and inclusiveness.

In these contexts, she has participated and directed many national and international research projects, joined qualified networks of experts, and worked as advisor of many Italian and international organizations.

Scientific results

The scientific activity of Laura Zanfrini has developed around some main thematic areas and then concentrated, in recent years, mainly on the theme of international migration. Thanks to a particular predisposition for the systematization of literature (also according to an interdisciplinary approach) and for the analysis of empirical evidence, she authored many articles and books and collected a long list of participations in conferences and scientific seminars.

A first area of interest is the theme of development, captured in particular in its local declination, the subject of her doctoral thesis (published in the book Una promessa disattesa..., 1996) and of numerous other publications, among which the volume Lo sviluppo condiviso…(2001). In this same area, there are other works dedicated to entrepreneurship (artisans, women, immigrants ...) and the involvement in important projects on co-development, that is the enhancement of the link between international migration and development of the communities of origin (cf., in particular, the project Migrants’ Associations and Philippine Institutions for Development, funded by EU Aeneas program).

A second area is represented by the processes of labour market’s functioning and regulation, analyzed in their relationship with cultural patterns, development models, and social change’s dynamics. Based on several empirical researches, the analyzes dedicated to these issues have resulted in various publications characterized by a specific attention to the system of differences–of gender, ethnicity and age– caught in its intertwining with family patters, cultural contexts and the institutional and informal networks of protection from social risks (see, among others, Disoccupate per forza e per amore..., 2003; Una rivoluzione incompiuta..., 2005; Riconciliare lavoro e cittadinanzaLeggere la disoccupazione..., 2012, as well as contributions dedicated to the work of immigrants, regularly published on the yearly ISMU Report on migration). Among the results achieved, the co-optation in the Scientific Committee of the reviews “Sociologia del lavoro” and “Professionalità”.

A third area of interest is that of human resource management. Initially focused in the degree thesis, dedicated to the negotiation of working time, this issue was subsequently developed in the context of two important interdisciplinary projects on the business-history and, especially, through the co-editorship of some monographic issues of the journal “Sociologia del lavoro “.The interest in the issue of social differences has then developed into a specific focus on Diversity Management: as well as through the publication of various articles and essays, this issue has found expression in the scientific conception and direction of the DIVERSE international project. Diversity Improvement as a Viable Enrichment Resource for Society and Economy,and, more recently, of the project DimiCome - Diversity Management and Integration. The skills of migrants in the labour market, started in 2019. Going beyond the scope of organizational studies, the theme of social differences, caught in their interweaving with social inequalities, has been the subject of numerous works and, especially, of the handbook Sociologia delle differenze e delle disuguaglianze(2011).

The scientific activity of Laura Zanfrini is today mainly focused on international migration, the integration of migrants in the host society and the inter-ethnic relations. Started in the early 1990s, through the involvement in some “pioneering” researches, the study of these issues has been oriented along different lines: the systematization of international literature, the basis of many works and, in particular, of the 2 handbooks Sociologia delle migrazioniand Sociologia della convivenza interetnica (the first edition date back to 2004) and of the numerous “entries” that appeared in prestigious dictionaries and encyclopaedias; thegovernance of human mobility, analyzed by capturing the intertwining of the economic, political and ethical dimensions in multiple publications and, in particular, in the recent volume The Challenge of Migration in a Janus-Faced Europe(2019); the social and institutional construction of ethnic differencesand of the figure of the migrant, also addressed with specific regard to the issue of the ethnicization of employment relationships and also caught in its gender and generational declination; the feedback processes that migrations produce in the communities of originof migrants, with particular regard to the issue of development and of individual and family emancipation strategies, also in an intergenerational perspective; the citizenship and citizenship rights, presented as emblematic of the need to overcome the limits of methodological nationalism and rethink the theories of belonging and justice (see, among others, the volume Cittadinanze..., 2007); the ethical dimension of migration practices and policiesand the role of religion in migratory processes, through the scientific direction of a large multi-disciplinary study –Migrations and religious belongings.From the periphery to the core, for a new humanism–, funded with a special grant by the Catholic University, as a project of “high currently magnitude”.

The notoriety achieved as an expert on these topics is also attested by the frequent speeches at conferences and seminars in Italy and abroad; the participation in the scientific/editorial committee of the journals “Studi Emigrazione/International Journal of Migration Studies”, “Mondi Migranti”, “Revista Internacional de Estudios Migratorios”, “People on Move”, “Asian and Pacific Migration Journal”, “Rivista Internazionale di Scienze sociali” and of CIRMIB, “Centro di Iniziative e ricerche sulle Migrazioni – Brescia”; the involvement in the working group set up at the Council of Europe in Strasbourg on irregular immigration policies; co-optation in the Independent Network of Labour Migration and Integration Experts; the appointment, in 2011, as Consultor of the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants.

Editorial work and publications

She authored almost 400 publications, including books, essays and articles in Italian and foreign reviews.

The complete list can be consulted through the repertoire.

Among them we highlight:

University textbooks:

[2004 first edition] Zanfrini L, Sociologia delle migrazioni, Laterza. Più volte riedito, ultima versione del 2016: Introduzione alla sociologia delle migrazioni.

[2004 first edition] Zanfrini L, Sociologia della convivenza interetnica, Laterza, then acquired and translated by Alianza Editorial, La convivencia interétnica). 

Edited books:

[2011] Zanfrini L (ed.),Sociologia delle differenze e disuguaglianze, Zanichelli.

[2005] Zanfrini L (ed.),La rivoluzione incompiuta. Il lavoro delle donne tra retorica della femminilità e nuove disuguaglianze, Edizioni Lavoro.

Monographic books:

[2019] Zanfrini L, The Challenge of Migration in a Janus-Faced Europe, Palgrave Pivot.

[2007] Zanfrini L, Cittadinanze. Appartenenza e diritti nella società dell’immigrazione, Laterza.

International research projects’ volumes:

[2015] Zanfrini L, The Diversity Value. How to Reinvent the European Approach to Immigration, McGraw-Hill.

[2008] Zanfrini L, Policies on irregular migrants. Volume I: Italy and Germany, Council of Europe Publishing.

[2006] Zanfrini L,Orgoglio e pregiudizio. Una ricerca tra Filippine e Italia sulla transizione all’età attiva dei figli di emigrati e dei figli di immigrati, Angeli.

Selected articles:

[2017] Zanfrini L, Between Ambitions and Ambivalences: Cross-cultural Diversity Management and Immigrant Integration, in Business and Management Studies.

[2016] Zanfrini L, How Europe can Benefit from Immigration-Related “Diversity” – A Policy Paper, in Peace Economics, Peace Science and Public Policy.

[2012] Zanfrini L, Family Migration: Fulfilling the Gap between Law and Social Processes, in Societies.

Awards and prizes

Premio “Agostino Gemelli” quale migliore laureata della Facoltà nell’anno 1989.

“Paul Harris Fellow”, rilasciato dalla Fondazione Rotary del Rotary International, “in segno di apprezzamento e riconoscenza per il suo tangibile e significativo apporto nel promuovere una migliore comprensione reciproca e amichevoli relazioni fra popoli di tutto il mondo”.

Ann Zeuner

STEM area: Biomedical sciences and biotechnology

Competences: cellular biology, molecular biology

Keywords: cancer, cancer stem cells, chemotherapy, disclosure, school, stamina cells

Region: Lazio


Biotechnology Group Leader, Department of Oncology and Molecular Medicine, Istituto Superiore di Sanità (National Institute of Health), Rome, Italy

Professional career

Dr. Ann Zeuner is a 49 years old researcher who dedicated more than half of her life to cancer research. Combining her two passions, biology and science communication (for which she obtained a MS at the International School of Advanced Studies in Trieste)

Scientific results

Dr. Zeuner carries out a biomedical research of high translational relevance flanked by an active commitment in research dissemination. Dr. Zeuner's major achievements reflect her constant effort to translate basic research in useful tools to improve the knowledge and treatment of cancer.

1) Mirroring the success of a professional life devoted to cancer research, the PI has published 48 papers in  high level journals including Nature, Science, Blood, Cancer Research, Cell Stem Cell. Importantly, 13 of these publications (excluding reviews) are research papers where the PI is first, last or corresponding author, indicating a profound personal commitment in the projects.

2) The PI dedicated great effort to scientific challenges having practical implications for the treatment and quality of life of cancer patients. Specifically, she has patented a new method to prevent chemotherapy-induced anemia and thrombocytopenia in cancer patients (Zeuner A. et al. Pat. N. US7994125 B2, 8/9/2011) and she recently developed a new class of compounds with anti-cancer stem cell activity and minimal toxicity against normal tissues (Zeuner A. et al. Pat. N. 102014902292046, approved Jan. 2017).

3) The PI has a strong commitment in promoting international cooperation among research and clinical groups in the field of oncology. For this reason, she was appointed by the Italian Ministry of Health as leader of the COLOMED (COLOrectal cancer in MEDiterranean countries) project, with the goal of creating a network of research and clinical centers working on colorectal cancer (CCR) in Mediterranean countries. COLOMED ( has been actively involved in creating strategic partnerships, broadening scientific cooperation, promoting the investments of resources in CCR research and fostering the transfer of technology and personnel among Mediterranean centers.

4) The PI strongly believes in the importance of science communication as a fundamental link between academic research, patients and the general public. She takes an active part in this commitment by writing articles for journals and magazines and by providing support to educational and charity initiatives in the field of cancer and cord blood donation.

5) The PI is particularly devoted to scientific dissemination toward schools. Every year she hosts in her laboratory high-school students within Ministry of Education projects (PON and Alternanza Scuola-Lavoro) and she published a book for schools on stem cells (“Le cellule staminali”, 80 pages, edited by the italian National Institute of Health and freely distributed on print and web,, which encountered a considerable success not only among students but also among the general public. The book was reprinted several times and is now undergoing an updated re-edition together with publication of an English version.

Editorial work and publications

(2017)   Colorectal cancer: towards new challenges and concepts of preventive healthcare. Colace L, Boccia S, De Maria R, Zeuner A. Ecancer medical science. 2017 Nov 28;11:ed74. doi: 10.3332/ecancer.2017.ed74. eCollection 2017.

(2015) Francescangeli F, Contavalli P, Gambara G, De Angelis ML, Baiocchi M, Pagliuca A, Fiorenzano A, Prezioso C, Boe A, Todaro M, Stassi G, Castro NP, Watanabe K,         Salomon DS, De Maria R, Minchiotti G, Zeuner A. Dynamic regulation of the cancer stem cell compartment by Cripto-1 in colorectal cancer. Cell Death Differ. 2015 Oct;22(10):1700-13.

(2014)  Zeuner A, Todaro M, Stassi G, De Maria R. Colorectal Cancer Stem Cells: From the Crypt to the Clinic. Cell Stem Cell. 2014 Dec 4;15(6):692-705.

(2014) Zeuner A, Francescangeli F, Contavalli P, Zapparelli G, Apuzzo T, Eramo A, Baiocchi M, De Angelis ML, Biffoni M, Sette G, Todaro M, Stassi G, De Maria R. Elimination of quiescent/slow-proliferating cancer stem cells by Bcl-XL inhibition in non-small cell lung cancer. Cell Death Differ. 2014, 105.

(2013) Todaro M, Turdo A, Bartucci M, Iovino F, Dattilo R, Biffoni M, Stassi G, Federici G, De Maria R, Zeuner A. Erythropoietin activates cell survival pathways in breast cancer stem-like cells to protect them from chemotherapy. Cancer Res. 2013 Nov 1;73(21):6393-400.

(2012)  Francescangeli F, Patrizii M, Signore M, Federici G, Di Franco S, Pagliuca A, Baiocchi M, Biffoni M, Vitiani LR, Todaro M, De Maria R, Zeuner A. Proliferation State and Polo-like Kinase1 Dependence of Tumorigenic Colon Cancer Cells. Stem Cells. 2012 Sep;30(9):1819-30.

(2011) Bartucci M, Dattilo R, Martinetti D, Todaro M, Zapparelli G, Di Virgilio A, Biffoni M, De Maria R, Zeuner A. Prevention of chemotherapy-induced anemia and thrombocytopenia by constant administration of stem cell factor. Clin. Cancer Res. 2011 Oct 1;17(19):6185-91.

(2009) Zeuner A., Pedini F., Francescangeli F., Signore M., Girelli G., Tafuri A., De Maria R. Activity of the BH3 mimetic ABT-737 on polycythemia vera erythroid precursor cells Blood, 2009, vol 113, pag. 1522-5.

(1999) De Maria R*, Zeuner A*, Eramo A, Domenichelli C, Bonci D, Grignani F, Srinivasula SM, Alnemri ES, Testa U, Peschle C. Negative regulation of erythropoiesis by caspase-mediated cleavage of GATA-1. Nature, 1999, vol. 401, pag. 489-493. *Equal contribution

(1997) De Maria R, Lenti L, D'Agostino F, Zeuner A, Tomassini B, Rippo MR, Testi R. Requirement for GD3 ganglioside in CD95- and ceramide- induced apoptosis. Science, 1997, vol. 277, pag. 1652-1655.


Ida Zilio Grandi

International politics area

Competences: Arabic language and cuture, classical and contemporary Islamic thought, History of Islamic Religion, islamic ethics, Muslims in Italy

Keywords: Corano, Islam, Italian Islam

Region: Veneto


Associate Professor with national qualification as Professor of Arabic Language and Literature at Ca' Foscari University of Venice

Professional career

After graduating in Oriental Languages ​​and Literatures (Arabic) at the Ca 'Foscari University of Venice, she obtained a Ph. doctorate in "Studies on the Middle East and Maghreb from the foundation of Islam to the present" at the University of Naples "L'Orientale".

Since 2002, she started several academic collaborations: she had been resident researcher at the University of Genoa until 2008, she lectured Arabic literature and culture at the University of Urbino and Islamic law, inter culturalism and social citizenship at Ca 'Foscari. In 2013 and 2014 he teaches Arab and Islamic culture at the Higher Institute of Religious Sciences (ISSR) Santa Maria di Monte Berico and teaches Arabic languages ​​and cultures also at the University of Padua and the Master of the Pontifical Antonianum University in Rome.

She is currently Associate Professor of Arabic Language and Literature at the Department of Studies on Asia and Mediterranean Africa (DSAAM) of the "Ca 'Foscari" University, where she teaches also Islamic thought and theology as well as Islamic philosophy.

She regularly holds seminars and courses at various universities and research institutes

Scientific results

Her scholarly activity has followed a number of distinct lines of research.

The main line has concerned the Koran as viewed, both lexically and with regard to differing interpretations of content, in the subsequent Arab Islamic literature. To this area belong especially her studies on evil (2002), on such individuals as Mary (1990 & 1997), Cain (1999), Pharaoh (2204), Jonah (2006), and on the question of religious freedom, how the female is perceived (2209), the Night Journey and the Prophet's Ascension (2010). These studies are based on the most representative, mainly Sunnite, works of exegesis in the Arabic language, from the beginning until the present day, noting the authors’ affiliations to the principal schools of thought. In the same direction and working from the same sources, the encyclopaedia entry al-Fātiḥa (2013). Still in the same area but for a more general readership, a complete and partially annotated translation of the Koran (2010), essays on the angels (2012) and on the concept of “the chosen people” (2015), editing the Italian editions of the Dictionary of the Koran (2007) and of J. Van Ess’s Flowering of Muslim Theology (2008), and an essay on kalām (2005).

In a different but rather similar vein are a series of recent studies on religious ethics, part of an ongoing research project, particularly and thus far, on the obligatory nature of employment (2012), on gratitude or šukr (2012), redirection or tawba (2013), judiciousness or ḥilm, peace or salām, and mercy (all 2015); silence and speech etiquette (2016); tenderness or rifq, welcoming and hospitality, moderation or wasaṭiyya, and beauty as an Islamic value (all 2017). In these cases the enquiry is based on the canonical texts and the principal exegesis, on the religious adab literature, focusing on the classical period (e.g. Ibn Abī al-Dunyā), but also following it through to the modern and contemporary periods. From the same sources also the encyclopedia entry Gratitude and Ingratitude (2014).

Another direction of study takes in elements of convergence and divergence between Islamic, Christian and Jewish religious thinking as reflected in Arabic mediaeval literature. To this area belong studies on Job for the Guida dei Perplessi (1997), on “the Golden Rule” (2004), on the correspondence between Ibn al-Munağğim e Qusṭā ibn Lūqā (2004), on the ethical theory of Yaḥyā ibn ‘Adī in the Tahdhīb al- akhlāq (2009 and currently printing, in PCAC, Rome), and a number of general academic works on, for example, Christian elements in the formation of Arabic philosophical thought (2005).

A more recent line of interest focuses on some symptomatic figures, especially women, in cultural relations between the Islamic world and the West. To this line belong the studies on Mayy Ziyāda

(1886-1941) and Maria Nallino (1908-1974), both forthcoming.

Another strand concerns adab literature on jewels and precious stones; in this context an essay on the writings of al-Tifāšī (1999), and a general academic work on that author (1999).

Finally, on cultural and social changes relating to the present-day Muslim population of Italy (2006, 2010, 2017).

Editorial work and publications

Besides the above-mentioned publications, below are some of her most recent works:


[2019 forth.] Zilio Grandi I, L’affinamento dei caratteri di Yaḥyā ibn ‘Adī (363/974) , Bologna, PCAC, pp. 1-257.

Selected articles

[2018] Zilio Grandi I, La pazienza dell’Islam: la virtú detta ‘ṣabr’, in Studia Graeco-Arabica, vol. 8, pp. 105-118. 

[2018] Zilio Grandi I, Povertà e Islam, in Via Borgogna 3, vol. 9, pp. 105-117.

[2018] Zilio Grandi I, The virtue of Tolerance. Notes on the root s-m-h in the Islamic tradition, in Philosophy & Social Criticism, vol. Special Issue (Reset DOC Seminars), pp. 1-10.

[2018] Zilio Grandi I, Maria Nallino (1908-1974) and the Birth of Arabic and Islamic studies at Ca’ Foscari,150 Years of Oriental Studies at Ca' Foscari, Venezia, ECF, pp. 85-93.

[2018] Zilio Grandi I, Fuga ed esilio di Mayy Ziyāda (Nazareth 1886 – Il Cairo 1941), Donne in fuga./ Mujeres en fuga. / Femmes en fuite. Atti del Convegno Venezia, Ca’ Foscari 29-30 novembre 2017, Venezia, ECF, pp. 59-74.

[2017] Zilio Grandi I, Dalla tenda di Abramo alle dimore dei credenti. La sacralità dell’ospite nella tradizione islamica, in Politica e Religione, vol. 2016, pp. 131-142.

[2017] Zilio Grandi I, Islamica moralia: appunti sulla gentilezza o rifq (Islamica moralia: notes on kindness or rifq), in Studi Magrebini, vol. II, pp. 649-663.

[2017] Zilio Grandi I, Modestia, pudicizia e riserbo: la virtù islamica detta haya, inPhilologia Hispalensis, vol. 31, pp. 169-183.

[2017] Zilio Grandi I, Medietà e facilitazione. Note a margine di alcune fonti arabe islamiche contemporanee (Some comments on the Golden Mean and Enabling from selected Arabic and Islamic contemporary sources) in Annali di Ca Foscari Serie Orientale, vol. 53, pp. 5-24.

[2017] Zilio Grandi I, Campanini M, Islam religione d'Occidente, Sesto San Giovanni: Mimesis, 2016 (Passato Prossimo). 153 p. in Quaderni di Studi Arabi, vol. 11, pp. 258-259 (ISSN 1121-2306) (Recensione in rivista).

[2017] Zilio Grandi I, Le virtù del musulmano, in L'Islam non è terrorismo, Bologna, Il Mulino, pp. 137-152 (Articolo su libro).

The full list can be consulted at the repertoire webpage.

Francesca Zoratto

STEM area: Biomedical sciences and biotechnology

Competences: behavioural neuroscience, ethology

Keywords: animal behaviour, basic research, collective anti-predator behaviours, gamble, human behaviour, preclinical research, predation, risk appetite

Region: Lazio


Researcher (fixed term) at the Centre for Behavioural Sciences and Mental Health of the Italian National Institute of Health (Istituto Superiore di Sanità; Rome, Italy)

Professional career

My main expertise pertains to the study of animal behaviour and closely related disciplines (e.g. psychobiology, neuroethology, psychopharmacology). I graduated at the University of Parma (Italy) in 2008 with a thesis in Ethology and subsequently obtained a PhD in Ethology at the University of Florence (Italy) in 2013 with a research project on impulsivity and gambling proneness in rats. In 2014 I had a 14-month contract at the Bambino Gesù Paediatric Hospital (Rome, Italy) within the research area “Multifactorial diseases and complex phenotypes”. The following year I received a scholarship from the Noopolis Foundation to perform research activities at the section of Behavioural Neuroscience of the Italian National Institute of Health (Istituto Superiore di Sanità; Rome, Italy). Thanks to a L’ORÉAL-UNESCO For Women in Science 2016 Award, I carried out research activities as a postdoctoral research fellow at the Unit of Cognitive Primatology and Primate Centre, where I focused my research on the social modulation of risky decision-making in non-human primates and rodents. Currently, I am working as a research scientist at the Centre for Behavioural Sciences and Mental Health of the Italian National Institute of Health (Istituto Superiore di Sanità; Rome, Italy), within a group that has a consolidated experience and tradition in the behavioural phenotyping of animal models, with a special focus on critical periods such as infancy and adolescence.

Scientific results

My primary interest is the study of animal behaviour in a functional and evolutionary perspective. For my research projects, I have dealt with multidisciplinary research topics at the intersection between laboratory work and natural settings, studying different species and combining data from different fields.

Currently, my research is mainly devoted to the development and validation of animal models of human neurobehavioural disorders, with particular reference to conduct and impulse control disorders and behavioural addictions (i.e. gambling disorder). The propensity to risk and gamble is not only found in human beings, and the study of animal behaviour can help to better understand the psychobiological mechanisms on which our addictions are based. Increasing the knowledge in this field is intended to provide more elements of understanding to the medical community, but also to develop proposals for the political class to study more effective strategies in the prevention and treatment of pathological gambling.


Editorial work and publications

Up to now (January 2019), I have co-authored about 40 papers in international peer-reviewed scientific journals including:

-          Zoratto F., Sbriccoli M., Martinelli A., Glennon J.C., Macrì S., Laviola G. 2018. Intranasal oxytocin administration promotes emotional contagion and reduces aggression in a mouse model of callousness. Neuropharmacology 143:250-267

-          Zoratto F., Oddi G., Gori E., Micucci A., De Petrillo F., Paglieri F., Adriani W., Laviola G, Addessi E. 2018. Social modulation of risky decision-making in rats (Rattus norvegicus) and tufted capuchin monkeys (Sapajus spp.). Behavioural Brain Research 347:37-48.

-          Zoratto F., Cordeschi G., Grignani G., Bonanni R., Alleva E., Nascetti G., Mather J.A., Carere C. 2018. Variability in the “stereotyped” prey capture sequence of male cuttlefish (Sepia officinalis) could relate to personality differences. Animal Cognition 21(6):773-785.

-          Zoratto F.*, Romano E.*, Pascale E., Pucci M., Falconi A., Dell’Osso B., Maccarrone M., Laviola G., D’Addario C., Adriani W. 2017. Down-regulation of serotonin and dopamine transporter genes in individual rats expressing a gambling-prone profile: a possible role for epigenetic mechanisms. Neuroscience 340:101-116. (*equally contributed to this work as co-first authors)

-          Canese R.*, Zoratto F.*, Altabella L., Porcari P., Mercurio L., De Pasquale F., Butti E., Martino G., Lacivita E., Leopoldo M., Laviola G., Adriani W. 2015. Persistent modification of forebrain networks and metabolism in rats following adolescent exposure to a 5-HT7 receptor agonist. Psychopharmacology 232(1):75-89. (*equally contributed to this work as co-first authors)

-          Zoratto F., Laviola G., Adriani W. 2013. Gambling proneness in rats during the transition from adolescence to young adulthood: a home-cage method. Neuropharmacology 67:444-454.

-          Koot S.*, Zoratto F.*, Cassano T., Colangeli R., Laviola G., van den Bos R., Adriani W. 2012. Compromised decision-making and increased gambling proneness following dietary serotonin depletion in rats. Neuropharmacology 62(4):1640-1650. (*equally contributed to this work as co-first authors)

-          Zoratto F., Carere C., Chiarotti F., Santucci D., Alleva E. 2010. Aerial hunting behaviour and predation success by peregrine falcons Falco peregrinus on starling flocks Sturnus vulgaris. Journal of Avian Biology 41(4):427-433.


Awards and prizes

Francesca Zoratto has received numerous awards and recognitions for her academic career. In 2016 she received a L’ORÉAL-UNESCO For Women in Science 2016 Award from the “Fondation L’ORÉAL” in collaboration with L’ORÉAL Italia and the Italian National Commission for UNESCO.