Investing in research and innovation: the opinions of Politecnico di Milano

The Rector at the 10th edition of the Alumni Convention of Politecnico di Milano: “Doing research means investing on people”. A focus on PNRR and sustainability

More than 1,000 Alumni attended the 10th edition of the Politecnico di Milano Alumni Convention, the first physical-digital hybrid edition of the traditional event dedicated to the Alumni community, which was held on Saturday, November 13 at Politecnico di Milano in the new Aula Magna dedicated to Alumnus Pesenti.

Scientific research and technological innovation were the themes of this important edition: sharing the opinion of Politecnico di Milano together with the Rector prof. Ferruccio Resta , there was the pro-Rector and research delegate prof. Donatella Sciuto , the president and delegate of the Rector for Alumni prof. Enrico Zio , prof. Ingrid Paoletti ( Rector's delegate for Expo2020 Dubai ), Andrea Sianesi (president of Fondazione Politecnico di Milano ) and Cristiana Bolchini (from the scientific committee of Center of Technology Foresight of Politecnico di Milano ).

What does it mean to conduct scientific research? What are the main topics on which it is important to do research today? How is it possible to create a fertile ecosystem to stimulate the spark of technological innovation ? We tried to answer together with experts, professors and alumni. Watch the video of the 2021 Convention at this link


Ferruccio Resta


Investing in the quality of researchers and updating laboratories, this is the challenge of Milano Politecnico. Since 2017, PhDs have grown by 35%, explained Donatella Sciuto, while as per the Horizon2020 program, which has just closed, the Politecnico has been a protagonist with over 400 research projects and a turnover of 200 million euros: first university in Italy , with a higher success rate than the European average. "One of the next challenges for the Politecnico will be to create critical mass: create a large accumulation point for companies, start-ups and spin offs", according to Resta, who illustrated the opportunities to be seized thanks to the PNRR and discussed those offered by Expo2020 Dubai with Paoletti and Sianesi (info at this link: ) . A look to the future comes from the Technolofy Foresight center, which warns: “Technology, we are tempted to overestimate its short-term impacts and underestimate its long-term ones,” according to Bolchini.


Also on stage 3 exceptional Alumni: Nicola Monti (CEO Edison), Luigi Rebuffi (Secretary General, European Cyber ​​Security Organization) and Emanuela Trentin (CEO Siram Veolia), who continue on the path opened by the top management of the University sharing scenarios , the strategies and visions that guide the choices of companies and institutions . “Companies do research because it is vital to remain competitive on the market. We must be careful to intercept trends, and universities are a very precious observatory "opens Trentin, supported by Monti who adds:" On sustainability, companies today have clear, shared and universal objectives. But they need to be ambitious: research is fundamental because it allows technologies that are still embryonic to mature and those that are ready to scale up ”. Rebuffi makes a clarification, taking as an example the world of cybersecurity: “Things that only a few months ago seemed like science fiction, in a year will be ready to go on the market. We need investments for the training of people and for research, to guide us in the possible scenarios ".


The Alumni Convention reaches its 10th edition in 2021, an event that brings together every year professionals of Politecnico from the world of architecture, design and engineering. Through the dialogue with the Alumni, recognized among the most influential players in the Italian industrial and cultural world, Politecnico opens with the Convention a space for sharing and reflection on the innovation path of the Italian system, on the opportunities to be seized and on our role as a community. in a international context.

Over 7,000 Alumni have participated over the years in this event, which occupies important spaces on a media and "geographic" level, moving to locations in the heart of Milan, also due to the influence of the exceptional speakers who have trod the scenes: we remember among the many Stefano Boeri, Francesco Starace, Giampaolo Dallara, Elena Bottinelli, Renato Mazzoncini, Paola Antonelli, Patricia Viel, Mauro Porcini and many others. Find all about past speakers

The Convention is organized by Alumni Politecnico di Milano, a community of over 200,000 professionals who, through the success of their ideas and works, have a positive impact on the world. Main ambassadors of Politecnico di Milano, they are committed to support for the University and the achievement of its strategic objectives , in particular those linked to internationalization, to the consolidation of research partnerships, to innovation teaching and financial support dedicated to students and researchers of excellence.

Find out how to contribute