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SISSA: attractive and international

Attractive and international: SISSA is swimming against the tide. As emerged in a recent UNESCO report on trends in higher education worldwide, entitled “Towards 2030”, in Italy foreign doctoral students account for just 11% of the total. SISSA is way ahead, pulling in 34% of its PhD students from abroad. And that’s not all. The new government report on Italian academic research quality (VQR) highlights SISSA’s ability to attract internationally acclaimed researchers from the world’s most renowned universities.

Brain awareness week 2017

Artificial intelligence, language, time perception, nutrition, vaccines: these are some of the themes that will be covered from the 13th to 18th of March in Trieste - and for the first time also in Gorizia - for Brain Awareness Week. The local initiative is organised by the Interdisciplinary Laboratory of SISSA in Trieste and the BRAIN Centre of the Department of Life Sciences of the University of Trieste, in collaboration with the Science Centre Immaginario Scientifico and the Municipality of Trieste.

SISSA joins "M'illumino di meno 2017"

On Friday 24 February 2017, SISSA will participate in the initiative “M’illumino di meno 2017” dedicated to energy saving and organized by the Radio2 program Caterpillar. The Italian Presidency of the Council of Ministers and several other institutions and organizations will join the initiative. Tomorrow afternoon, the corridor lighting will be turned off from 6.00 to 8.00 p.m. We invite the scientific and administrative staff to participate switching off the lights in the offices and labs.

Anvur report

First in physics, first in neurosciences, second in mathematics. The aggregate data issued by ANVUR - the Italian National Agency for the Evaluation of the University and Research Systems – prove beyond doubt SISSA’s absolute prominent role in these research areas within the national panorama.

Empathy and moral choices

Empathy and emotional awareness do not affect our moral decisions. This is suggested by a new study published on Social Neuroscience and led by SISSA neuroscientist Marilena Aiello. Our choices do not depend on our empathy. The difference, instead, lies in our emotional reactions, more pronounced in more empathic people. In particular if we opt for uncomfortable decisions for a greater good.

New states of matter

A laser pulse can drive materials towards new states where they acquire proprieties potentially useful for innovative microelectronics applications. This promising scientific area has been investigated by an international team headed by professor Michele Fabrizio from SISSA, Trieste, Italy, and professor Marino Marsi from Université Paris-Sud, Orsay, France. The research has just been published in Nature Communications.

Double effort against Rett’s syndrome

Although our genes normally come in pairs (one on each homologous chromosome), sometimes one of them is missing and the “surviving” one is unable to do all the work (it is referred as "haploinsufficient"): this situation can give rise to very serious diseases. So what can be done to fight these, often neurological, diseases? One possible strategy has been successfully adopted by a SISSA research team, in vitro and  in vivo: using leading-edge techniques to stimulate the surviving gene to also do the work of the missing gene.

Social choices: follow one’s nose or eyes?

Psychologists and neuroscientists have thoroughly investigated olfactory behaviours in newborns and adults, but relatively little is known about the characteristics of the sense of smell during infancy and adolescence. In a study carried out by SISSA in collaboration with the Please Touch Museum of Philadelphia (an interactive science museum for children), over 150 children aged 3 to 11 years old took part in a simple experiment allowing investigators to trace the curve of visuo-olfactory integration.