About us

We are a community of professors, researchers and experts who deals with design cultures and their continuous innovation. We operate in the University of Bologna through teaching activities, Research and in the Third mission.

Flaviano Celaschi

Flaviano Celaschi

Full Professor, Design, Department of Architecture

Professional in design driven innovation in companies, various organization, public administrations. He's Chair of the Creative and Cultural Industry ClustER in Emilia Romagna region in Italy, and he's vice-president of National Cluster Made in Italy. Dean of the Industrial design courses in University of Bologna.

Andreas Sicklinger

Andreas Sicklinger

Full Professor, Design, Department of Architecture

Full Professor in Industrial Design, focuses his research interests on three main fronts: human interaction, usability and ergonomics. design education and in particular the topic of teaching future design aesthetics, design of territories and mediterranean design. He has been professor and head of department at the German University of Cairo for several years. He has published books and articles on topics of his research interest.

Elena Maria Formia

Elena Maria Formia

Associate Professor, Design, Department of Architecture

Elena Formia is Associate Professor at the Department of Architecture of the Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna, where she is Director of First Cycle Degree in Industrial Design and the Second Cycle Degree in Advanced Design.
She is member of the Advanced Design Unit, a research group that investigates the relationships between design cultures, innovation and anticipation through a cross-disciplinary approach. Within this context, she is investigating, in a historical perspective, how ideas of futures were embedded in artefacts and/or in design projects.
The interest towards possible overlaps between design sciences and humanistic knowledge started in 2012, when she worked at the Humanities Design Lab, a trans-disciplinary platform of the Politecnico di Milano (Design Department).
Previously (2008-2012) she hold a Post-Doctorate Fellowship at the Politecnico di Torino, Architectural and Design Department. In 2007 she completed a Ph.D. in History of Architecture and Town Planning at the Politecnico di Torino.
She taught Design Cultures at the Design Degree Courses of the University of Bologna and Politecnico di Milano.
She is author of the books Storie e cronache del design (Allemandi 2012 – with Pier Paolo Peruccio), Storie di Futuri e Design (Maggioli 2017) and editor of the books Innovation in Design Education. Theory, research and processes to and from a Latin perspective (Allemandi 2012), Humanities Design Lab. Le culture del progetto e le scienze umane e sociali (Maggioli 2016 – with Manuela Celi). 

Michele Zannoni

Michele Zannoni

Associate Professor, Design, Department of Architecture

Michele Zannoni is Associate Professor at the Department of Architecture of the Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna, where he is a member of the Advanced Design Unit. His publications include articles in SCIRES-IT journal and Material Design Journal. He is the author of the book Progetto e Interazione (Quodlibet, 2018), which explore the intersection of interaction processes and visual and product design. His scientific research is concerned about digital and physical products and interaction design. From the year 2000, he taught at the IUAV of Venice, the Polytechnic of Milan and the University of the Republic of San Marino where he was the director of the master's degree in Design. Since 1997 he has worked as interaction and visual designer in several design agencies: at Studio Altermedia, at Studio Visuale form 2008 and at last in BDS Design from 2014. In these companies he has worked on national and international projects, winning international awards in the fields of multimedia and interface design and in particular, he has collaborated since 2009 with the Technogym design center, and has designed many of the company's user interfaces.

Valentina Gianfrate

Valentina Gianfrate

Senior assistant professor (fixed-term), Design, Department of Architecture

Valentina Gianfrate, architect, PhD, research fellow in Technology of Architecture at the Dpt of Architecture, University of Bologna. Her fields of expertise are: systems and technologies for renovation of buildings, transformation of built environment, mitigative impact solutions for climate change, innovative trends lead to the construction sector. She is involved in several initiatives of international learning/training activities under Climate Kic Platform. She is author of several national and international articles about retrofitting technologies for existing buildings, sustainable design, and about the relation between energy measures and regulations with existing constructions.

Luca Barbieri

Luca Barbieri

phd student, Department of Architecture

interaction design | digital manufacturing | game design

Graduated in Industrial Product Design in Ferrara in 2015 with the thesis “Satellite innovation: exhibition on rapid prototyping”. He received his Master's Degree in Interaction Design in San Marino in March 2019 with the thesis: “Wearable device and mimetic devices for body tracking. Stress, Parkinson's and tremor as a form of prevention and awareness of one's own body”. From January 2020 he has a research fellow at the Advance Design Unit of the University of Bologna and works on the development of processes and methods to support teaching for product design, analyzes the tools and technologies of maker contexts for physical prototyping and digital with a particular focus on enabling technologies for Industry 4.0. It is responsible for supporting users of the Makerspace Alma Labor for experimental projects.

Giorgio Casoni

Giorgio Casoni

Research fellow, Department of Architecture

innovation management | design driven

He was professor of Economics and Innovation Management at the University of Urbino, the Polytechnic of Turin and the Polytechnic of Milan. He teaches at the Bologna Business School, dealing with management innovation and innovation driven by neuroscience. He is currently a research fellow at the advanced Design Unit of the University of Bologna, where he deals with applications of neuroscience in the workplace and on persons. 
He co-founded and is director of Neocogita, an Italian startup that develops technological systems and services applying neuroscience to well-being in companies. He is also co-founder and managing partner of Spinnvest, a company that transforms ideas, business models and innovations into startups in the field of cleantech, IT Digital, mechatronics and neuroscience.

Davide Giorgetta

Davide Giorgetta

Research fellow, Department of Architecture

graphic design | interaction design | web development

Graduated in design for publishing at the ISIA Urbino in 2015 with a thesis on the phenomenon of non-institutional digital libraries and their implications in the publishing ecosystem. He works with graphic design and web development in artistic and cultural contexts, focusing his activity on the intersection among design, culture and technology. Since 2018 he has been teaching assistant at the University of the Republic of San Marino and since 2020 he has been lecturer at the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence. He is currently a research fellow at the Research Center for Interaction with the Cultural and Creative Industries of the University of Bologna.

Lorela Mehmeti

Lorela Mehmeti

Research fellow, Department of Architecture

Graduated in 2016 in Interdisciplinary Research and Studies On Eastern Europe (MIREES) at the University of Bologna. Specialized in euro-planning and social inclusion of vulnerable groups. Researcher in Zagreb during the 2016 migration crisis; project coordinator in Kosovo at the European Center for Minority Issues, where she has also participated in numerous publications in the field of educational inclusion and participation of ethnic minorities in the Balkan region.

Patrizia Ramadori

Patrizia Ramadori

Research fellow, Department of Architecture

strategic design | product system | design driven innovation | process design

She graduated in Architecture at the Polytechnic of Milan, where she was Professor in Methodology of Design', 'Visual Communication' and 'Visual Perception'. Master in Industrial Design and Transportation Design at the Scuola Politecnica di Design (SPD), Master in Strategic Design at the Politecnico di Milano and Executive Master in Business Design Innovation at Bologna Business School (BBS). Journalist and professional in the area of Communication, deals with design-driven innovation for businesses. Since 2019 she is Professor at the Alma Mater Studiorum in Bologna and holder of a Research Cheque.

Elena Vai

Elena Vai

Research fellow and phd student, Department of Architecture

cultural and creative industries | social innovation | design driven innovation

Graduated in Phenomenology of styles, PhD student in Architecture and project Culture at the University of Bologna, where she carries out a research on the role of events in urban transformation. Research fellow in the Center on the interaction between Creative and Cultural Industries. Curator of exhibitions, since 2015 she is responsible for the contents of Bologna Design Week, an event system for the urban, cultural an human re-activation of the city.

Alberto Calleo

Alberto Calleo

Research fellow, Interdepartmental Centre for Industrial ICT Research

digital prototyping and fabrication | computational and parametric design and architecture | traditional crafts

Graduated in Building Engineering at the Alma Mater Studiorum - University of Bologna. He has been tutor and adjunct professor for the Degree and Master Degree Course in Industrial Design at the same University where he now collaborates with the Advanced Design Unit. His specific area of interest is product design with a focus on innovative technology for designing, prototyping and manufacturing. 

Simona Colitti

Simona Colitti

Research fellow, Department of the Arts

service design | design thinking | UX design

Matteo Gambini

Matteo Gambini

Research fellow, Department of the Arts

service design | design driven innovation | design for social impact 

Marco Pezzi

Marco Pezzi

Research fellow, Department of the Arts

Interaction Design | Behavioural Design | Animation | Game Design

Giulia Tonioni

Giulia Tonioni

Research fellow, Department of the Arts

advanced design | design driven innovation | cultural and creative industries  | process design

Andrea Cattabriga

Andrea Cattabriga

phd student, Department of Architecture

strategic design | open and collaborative innovation

Currently enrolled in the XXXVIth cycle of the PhD in Architecture and Design Cultures with a research on the design of citizen science processes and co-design in complex and multi-stakeholder contexts. In 2019 he becomes Adjunct Professor of Advanced Design 3A Laboratory and Research Fellow at CIRI-ICT (Interdepartmental Center for Industrial Research), working on co-design methodologies aimed at facilitating product, service and innovation processes of SMEs.
Co-founder of Slow/d, award-winning design firm that develops strategic design projects, open innovation platforms and distributed manufacturing systems, investigating the relationship between design and new sustainable production models. 
President of Mak-ER (regional network of fab labs and makerspace in Emilia-Romagna), he has also worked on technology transfer and open innovation labsimplementation for public-private consortiums.

Giorgio Dall'Osso

Giorgio Dall'Osso

phd student, Department of Architecture

body design | basic design | design for behaviour change

Designer, his research focus is the relationship between body and technology. Since 2016 he is a member of the Advanced Design Unit, the design research group of the Architecture Department of the University of Bologna. His research interests focus on basic design and behaviour design. 

Valentina De Matteo

Valentina De Matteo

phd student, Department of Architecture

change design | knowledge innovation | participatory design | serious games for innovation | storytelling design

Clara Giardina

Clara Giardina

phd student, Department of Architecture

packaging design | ecodesign | kids&toy design | design thinking

She collaborates with the Advanced Design Unit of Bologna as an expert in innovation and sustainability in the Packaging System, dealing with responsible design, education, design thinking. Lecturer at the University of Bologna - Industrial Design Course, Master Design and Technology for Fashion Communication, Master in Innovation in eXtended Reality, Master in Enterprise and Ceramic Technology - since 2014.
Designer, she projects exhibitions, workshops and communication products with the aim of spreading sustainable behavior and innovation. She collaborated with Paco Collaborative, Opificio Golinelli and Unindustria Bologna, bringing Design Thinking into schools. She is part of ilVespaio, a professional network that deals with eco-design and sustainability for companies and institutions.
Yunyu Ouyang

Yunyu Ouyang

phd student, Department of Architecture

Social Design | Public Service Innovation

Yunyu OUYANG is an observer of social transformation. She focuses on governance innovation launched in China and Italy. Her research is exploring ways to optimize existing public service structures and improving civic satisfaction for Generation Z.

She holds a Master's Degree(MRes) in Design Studies concentrating on Enabling Design at Jiangnan University(Wuxi, China), where she has conducted the study on empowering the marginalized group through participatory processes. Yunyu also has various papers published in some Chinese journals, including Hunan Social Science and Sino-Western Architecture etc..

Prior to joining the Advanced Design Unit, Yunyu was a design strategist responsible for converting an anti-desertification NPO into a social-enterprise at Inner Mongolia, China, in order to involve the third-sectors to combat land degradation with local authorities.

Ludovica Rosato

Ludovica Rosato

phd student, Department of Architecture

advanced design | product design | material design

Ludovica Rosato is a Ph.D. student in Architecture and design culture at the University of Bologna. Her research fits in the field of Advanced Design Studies and, in particular, it focuses on the designer’s role in the transition to the new sustainable uses of polymers in designing products. She intends to create tools, methods and systems that allow industries and designers to exploit the characteristics of this material without impacting on the environmental and social ecosystem.
Since 2019 she is a member of the Advanced Design Unit, the design research group of the Architecture Department of the University of Bologna with whom she carries out activities of study, applied research, dissemination and education. She is a teaching assistant in the design course of the university of Bologna, she previously attended a first cycle degree in Industrial Design and a master’s degree in advanced design of products and processes.

Laura Succini

Laura Succini

phd student, Department of Architecture

EVIE YUQING ZHU

EVIE YUQING ZHU

phd student, Department of Architecture

Knowledge Innovation and Design thinking | Art Education and Illustration | Storytelling | Participatory Design | Cultural and Creative Industry

Yuqing Zhu is a PhD student at the Advanced Design Unit at the University of Bologna. Her research interests mainly focus on knowledge innovation and creative industry. With a background of illustrating for children in the US, she intends to research how art education and storytelling can benefit individuals’ growth. She is also an illustrator and a member of Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.