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The Bay Area Chapter of ISSNAF

A. F. (March 07, 2018)
Italian Scientists and Scholars in the North America Foundation open a new chapter in the Greater San Francisco Bay Area, expanding the reference point for young Italian researchers to the west coast.

The Italian Scientists and Scholars in North America Foundation, ISSNAF, is a non for profit organization that was born in 2007, whose mission is to promote scientific, academic and technological collaboration amongst Italian researchers and scholars in the US, Canada and Italy. The founding group included 36 Italian scientists including 4 Nobel Prize, and today it is made up of about four thousand members and represents the largest organization of Italian scientists abroad.

ISSNAF's New Chapter in the Greater San Francisco Bay Area

ISSNAF has chapters all over North America including New York, Florida, Chicago, Seattle and now, finally, California. The Bay Area Chapter of ISSNAF was established in 2017 to connect the many talented Italian researchers based in the Greater San Francisco Bay Area. Leading this new group, which also includes major university centers such as Stanford, Santa Clara, San Jose State and several campuses of the University of California, is Italian engineer and entrepreneur, Pierluigi Zappacosta.

On March 5th, Federico Rampini, Italian journalist Federico Rampini, who works from New York for Italy's La Repubblica newspaper, wrote about the new chapter in the "Far West" column of Repubblica’s Business & Finance insert. 

“Since the time of the physicist Segre, the flow of Italian scientists and researchers to this section of California has always been enormous. There is an instinctive sympathy between Italians abroad, solidarity towards the latest arrivals, generosity in helping each other, but it is not easy to know everyone. Especially if the area is vast (the Bay Area has a population that is close to nine million) and the branches of activity are disparate. So it is important news that the Italian Scientists and Scholars in North America Foundation (ISSNAF) finally arrived there too. His activities are varied: organization of professional events, meetings with networking opportunities, guidance to younger researchers. What is perhaps even more valuable is the support that the ISSNAF offers to the universities and industry of our country.”

ISSNAF Awards 2017

The Italian Scientists and Scholars in North America Foundation every year gives out several awards to scientists of Italian origin who have honored their country of origin with a significant contribution to research. "Science & the New Industrial Revolution: Industry 4.0" was the focus of 2017 edition of the ISSNAF annual event, and 16 finalists were chosen for the 5 Awards for Young Investigators, all Italian researchers younger than 40. The research projects were in the fields of leukemia, chemistry, environmental sciences, engineering, mathematics, physics etc. During the same occasion, the biologist Rita Rossi Colwell received the ISSNAF Life Achievement Award, in recognition of her exceptional career as one of the most influential and visionary scientists today. “Interaction among scientists from all countries is important for science because it brings important new ideas and is culturally enriching in exchange of views concerning the environment, global health, and technological discovery,” stated Rita Rossi Colwell in an interview by Alberto Di Mauro.

“ISSNAF affiliates spearhead research, pioneer science and constantly push forward the boundaries of our knowledge" said the Italian Ambassador to the United States, Armando Varricchio. "They are an asset both for Italy and North America, and a true bridge between the two sides of the Atlantic. The young winners of the ISSNAF awards are a crucial asset in the context of relations between the USA and Italy. Their hard work and energy are a reason for Italy to be proud, and provide a strong impetus of innovation and progress to our companies".