The national research system is composed of public and private entities that carry out scientific and technological research in Italy.

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In Emilia-Romagna there is a consolidated ecosystem of innovation research made up of six universities, national research centers based in the region, the Higher Technology Network, composed of industrial research laboratories and centers for innovation with regional accreditation, and a strong system of companies engaged in Research & Development actions.


University of Bologna (with branches in Cesena, Forlì, Ravenna and Rimini)

The University of Bologna has very ancient origins that indicate it as the first University in the Western world. With excellence in teaching, research at the forefront, a network of locations, international openness, and information services: in these and in many other areas, the Alma Mater promotes and continues today on the path of innovation.

University of Modena and Reggio Emilia

The university, located in the two cities of Modena and Reggio Emilia, is among the national leaders in education and industrial fields. It boasts strong and long-lasting relationships with local companies, including world famous automobile producers and producers of typical products such as balsamic vinegar or Parmigiano Reggiano.

University of Ferrara

Ferrara is a student-friendly university city, listed by UNESCO on the list of World Heritage Sites. Ferrara is a real university campus whose university offers a varied educational quality that allows for an integral and international university education suitable for facing the challenges of a globalized world.

University of Parma

The University of Parma promotes the creation, transfer and progress of knowledge to meet the needs of higher education and research of companies, also at an international level. The city is also home to the European College which aims to train experts on European Union issues and to provide a unique contribution to the construction of a European and international society.

Cattolica University (Piacenza branch)

The Catholic University of Sacro Cuore (UCSC), founded in 1921, is a private university, with headquarters in Milan and other offices in several Italian cities: Brescia, Cremona, Piacenza and Rome. The PIacenza branch offers study programs in the agro-food and socio-economic and legal fields, and also in education.

Polytechnic University of Milan (Piacenza branch)

The Polytechnic University of Milan is one of the most prestigious universities in Italy and one of the most recognized in Europe in the scientific and technological field. It is an Italian university of scientific and technological character, founded in 1863. The fields of study and research include three macro-areas: engineering, architecture and industrial design. It is based in the city of Milan and has branches in Como, Cremona, Lecco, Mantova and Piacenza and in the city of Shanghai, China, in collaboration with Tongji University.



CNR – National Research Center

The National Research Council (Cnr) is the largest public research facility in Italy, founded in 1923. Since 1989, Cnr is a research organization with the mission to carry out research projects to promote innovation and the competitiveness of the industrial system on a national level, the internationalization of the national research system, and to provide technologies and solutions to emerging needs in the public and private sectors.
In Emilia-Romagna it is based in Bologna, Faenza (BO), Modena, and in Ferrara.

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ENEA – The National agency for new technologies, energy and sustainable economic development

The National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development is a body governed by public law aimed at research, technological innovation and the provision of advanced services to businesses, public administration and citizens in the sectors of energy, environment and sustainable economic development. Since its creation in the 1960s, its strengths are in applied research, technology transfer, and technical-scientific assistance to companies, associations, territories, central and local administrations.
In Emilia-Romagna it is based in Bologna and in the Brasimone area in the province of Bologna

The National Institute of Nuclear Physics (INFN)

This is a national public research body dedicated to the study of the fundamental constituents of matter and the laws that govern them. It carries out research, both theoretical and experimental, in the fields of subnuclear, nuclear and astroparticle physics. The research activities of the INFN are all carried out in a field of international competition and in close collaboration with the Italian universities, based on consolidated and decades-long relationships.
In Emilia-Romagna it is based in Bologna and in Ferrara.

INAF – The National Institute of Astrophysics

It is the main Italian research organization for the study of the universe that promotes, realizes and coordinates, both within the framework of the European Union programs and international organizations, research activities in the fields of astronomy and astrophysics, in collaboration with universities and with other public and private entities, at both national and international level.
In Emilia-Romagna there are 3 branch offices in Bologna

INGV - The National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology

The National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (INGV) was created in 1999 from the merger of five institutes already operating in the field of geophysical and volcanological disciplines. The institutional mandate of the Authority includes the pursuit of the objectives of the observation of phenomena and development of scientific knowledge on the Earth System as a whole, in strong interaction with the technological activity, management and development of research infrastructures and the realization of activities with a potential significant impact on the population and on the various components of Society.
In Emilia-Romagna it is based in Bologna.


Cineca is a non-profit Inter-university Consortium formed by 67 Italian Universities, 9 National Research Institutes, three polyclinics and the MIUR - Ministry of University and Research Education, that was established in 1969. It is the largest computing center in Italy, and one of the most important in the world. Operating under the control of the Ministry of Education, University and Research, it provides support to the activities of the scientific community through supercomputing and its applications, creates management systems for university administrations and the MIUR, and designs and develops information systems for public administration, health services and businesses.
In Emilia-Romagna it is based in Bologna.


The Higher Technology Network is a regional network that brings together public and private industrial research laboratories, innovation centers and Technopolis accredited by the Emilia-Romagna Region. The network is coordinated by the Research and Innovation Division of ART-ER, a consortium that includes the Emilia-Romagna Region, universities, research centers in the region and the Unioncamere (Chamber of Commerce) of Emilia-Romagna.

The industrial research laboratories are present in all the provincial territories of the Region and are characterized by belonging to areas of specialization identified at a regional level based on the Smart Specialization Strategy - S3 strategy (only in Italian).

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Other useful information


AREA S3 spaces are a project of the Competence Unit for Innovation of ART-ER, a consortium that includes the Emilia-Romagna Region, universities, research centers in the region and Unioncamere (Chambers of Commerce) of Emilia-Romagna, created to promote the approach of young people to the labor and research market and for the orientation of the opportunities offered by the regional ecosystem of research and innovation, with reference to the areas of specialization S3.

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