Parthenope University of Napoli, Department of Sciences for the Environment (Parthenope, Italy)

Organisation overview. The "Parthenope" University of Napoli started its activities as Istituto Universitario Navale, an autonomous "Universitas Studiorum" founded, in Naples in the beginning of 20th century, to realize "an Higher Education Center for studying the sea as a physical entity, as a production source and as a means of economic activity - an Institute which, besides contributing to the advancement of scientific culture, would prepare the minds to the awareness of economic issues in the shipping sector". 

In short the Institute became the most important Italian Institute in the field of sea studies, then the focus was expanded to include curricula in Economy, Science, Law, Engineering. Its name was changed to "Parthenope" University of Naples, according to the previous name of the city, Parthenope.

At present, the University is organized into five Faculties: Economy, Science and Technology (including environmental, biotechnology and naval science curricula), Law, Engineering, and Motorial Sciences. The number of students enrolled is about 18 000, with a significant increase in the last 5 years.

Faculty of Science and Technology

The Faculty offers curricula in:

  1. Environmental Sciences (with special focus on marine environment)
  2. Industrial and Agricultural Biotechnologies
  3. Informatics

Number of students enrolled: about 2000.

Department of Sciences for the Environment - Energy and Biotechnology Research Unit

Scientific Expertise in:

  • energy, exergy and emergy analyses;
  • ecological footprint and material flow accounting;
  • environmental impact assessment, LCA and quality assessment;
  • GIS – Geographical Information System
  • alimentary and agro-industrial biotechnologies. Chemical and microbiological conversion processes.
  • Biopolymers and bioenergies. Biorefineries
  • Zero Emission Technologies and Systems

The team has wide experience in integrating bio-physical and economic aspects of societies and productive sectors at local and regional levels. Core activity and excellence is the integration of evaluation methods, by means of parallel or sequential application of selectively chosen methods for the assessment. This is achieved by means of an integrated assessment procedure, called SUMMA (Sustainability Multicriteria Multiscale Assessment), and in-house developed software for calculation.

International Cooperation

The team has wide experience in International cooperation, ranging from organization of international Workshop, Meetings and Conferences as well as Research Projects. In particular, the Unit coordinates a Network of European and Latino-American Universities within a ALFA programme (SUPPORT project) in the field of multiple use of photosynthesis products; has a signed collaboration agreement with the University of Florida in the field of sustainable management of resources; several Erasmus and Socrates projects with Universities in Sweden, Poland and Austria, in the field of Energy Analysis and Environmental Accounting; is involved in an European Project (DECOIN) in the field of Indicators of Sustainable Development, with Finland, Spain, Greece and Denmark; finally, the Unit coordinates an international network in the field of Zero Emission Systems, named ZERIND- Zero Emission Research and Indicators.

An international PhD programme "Environment, Resources and Sustainable Development" is being developed in collaboration with (a) Technical University of Graz-Austria; (b) Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences-Uppsala; (c) University of Florida-Center for Wetlands; (d) University of Campinas, Brazil (Departamento de Engenharia de Alimentos); (e) IAM – Istituto Agronomico Mediterraneo, an international network of countries of Southern Europe and Northern Africa.

The team has wide experience in International cooperation, ranging from organization of international Workshop, Meetings and Conferences as well as research projects. In particular, it has performed research activities in collaboration with the University of Florida (1991-up to now); the Cornell University (1994-up to now); the Latvian Institute of Wood Chemistry (2000-up to now); the University of Berlin (2001-up to now); the INENCO Centre of the Russian Academy of Science, Saint Petersburg (1998-up to now); The Swedish Agricultural University (1999-up to now); the University of Copenhagen (1995-up to now); the Technical University of Graz (Austria, from 2003 to now). The Unit organizes a biennial International Workshop “Advances in Energy Studies” every other year at international level (also included and funded by EU as High Level Scientific Conference and by US National Science Foundation). It attracts top experts in energy, energy economics and energy-related environmental problems, seeking joint evaluation of the state-of-the-art in the field, advanced solutions for energy problems, and integration among activities..

Key personnel. Sergio Ulgiati: Education in Physics and Physical Chemistry. Professor of Life Cycle and Environmental Impact Assessment. Former Coordinator of the Energy and Environment Research Unit, Department of Chemistry, University of Siena, Italy, Sergio Ulgiati moved to Parthenope University in November 2006 where he now coordinates the Energy and Biotechnology Research Unit. Research experience in biomass to biofuel conversion, Energy and Emergy Analysis, Life Cycle Assessment, Sustainability indicators. In most recent years his research activity expanded to the evaluation of options for zero emission technologies and strategies (ZETS). Large international experience in both research and teaching/dissemination activities. Visiting professor at the University of Florida in 1992 and 1997 and at Cornell University in 1994. Experience in organization and coordination of international meetings and research projects.

Marco Raugei, PhD:MSc in Environmental Chemistry at the University of Siena, Italy (2000). Graduate Research Assistant in Environmental Engineering at the University of Florida, USA (2001). PhD in Environmental Chemistry at the University of Siena, Italy (2004). Expertise in Life Cycle Assessment, Environmental Impact Assessment, Environmental Chemistry, Environmental Modelling. Research Interests: Sustainable Energy Systems, Environmental Modelling, Development of Theoretical Methods for Environmental Impact Assessment. Partecipated as speaker in several International Conferences and published over 20 scientific papers in International Journals and Conference Proceedings.

Amalia Zucaro: MSc in Environmental Science at the Parthenope University of Naples, Italy (2004). Wide experience on Emergy Analysis, Environmental Science, Sustainable Energy Systems, Sustainable Development and Geographical Information Systems (GIS). In the year 2005 collaborated to the project “Study of environmental problems of the Naples city” with National Council for Scientific Research (CNR), in order to monitor the landscape around Naples (for one year and half). In the year 2006 collaborated to the project “Biotechnology for the multifunctional role of agriculture” with the Parthenope University. Her present affiliation is the Department of Sciences for the Environment of Parthenope University, with a research scholarship. Research Interests: Life Cycle Assessment, Impact Assessment, Environmental Modelling, GIS.