What do you teach at Ca’ Foscari? What are your main research interests?
I am an Organic Chemistry associate professor, teaching carbon chemistry in terms of reactivity and possible applications. My research activity is focused on the exploitation of renewable resources for the production of new molecules and/or materials.
What's an area you have always wanted to be involved in but have not yet had the opportunity to explore?
I would love to do joint studies between chemistry and archaeology and chemistry and astronomy, I hope it happens soon!
What are you most passionate about in your research?
What I am most passionate about in my research is the chance to positively contribute to the development of our society by developing creative solutions. For me, research is a great creative outlet, it 'forces' you to critically think about and analyse experiments and not to take anything for granted. You learn that molecules often do what they want.
What do teaching and researching mean to you?
I believe that teaching and research are two fundamental aspects of an academic career. Teaching lets me share my expertise and contribute to shaping the next generation of experts, while doing research satisfies my curiosity, helps me keep my problem-solving and management skills sharp and constantly reminds me that there is always something new to learn.
The issue of gender inequality in STEM disciplines in Italy is still very topical. What would you tell girls who want to approach these disciplines?
My advice is not to be influenced by any (useless) gender difference logic: we are lucky to live in an age where knowledge is truly accessible and there are no gender restrictions to enter university. If you have the curiosity and passion for a scientific subject, get involved and don't be afraid to share it with others, so that you can build a network of contacts that will probably stay with you beyond your university experience. Despite low enrolment numbers, science courses and workshops are social activities: try to enjoy this aspect too.