Skip to main content

Science communication

Science communication is a moral duty of any researcher. It promotes research openness, sustainability, education and it ensure its impact.

Weaving Science and Society, just like a spider weaves its web

My fascination with spiders and a passion for community engagement have driven me to establish, together with a bunch of friends of mine, Aracnofilia –  Italian Association of Arachnology. This commitment extends beyond my research, as I actively participate in science communication initiatives related to spiders and their silk.

I have collaboratore with esteemed media platform such as BBC (UK), Curiosity Stream (US), and Rai (Italy), in which I have contributed to documentaries, sharing my expertise as an interviewee. A pivotal achievement was delivering a TEDx talk, realizing a dream of mine.

Talks in scientific conferences

17/12/2023, Magnetic artificial spider silk fibers for soft electronics and robotics, 9th International Conference on Mechanics of Biomaterials and Tissues (ICMOBT), Hawaii (US), Selected Speaker

11/07/2023, Micro-mechanical cutting of silk fibers, GRC – Silk Proteins and the Transition to Biotechnologies, Bryant University, USA, Invited Speaker

29/09/2022, Experimental nanomechanics of natural or artificial spider silk, GIMC SIMAI YOUNG 2022, Pavia (IT), Invited speaker

23/09/2022, Spider silks and webs: when biomechanics matters, VIII polish arachnological conference, Katowice, Invited Speaker

6/09/2022, The mechanical properties of spider piriform silk, AIMETA Palermo 2022, Selected Speaker

17/09/2019, Different spider silk junctions as a tool to improve the structure efficiency of spider’s orb web., AIMETA 2019, Roma (IT), Selected speaker

04/07/2019, The mechanics of tangle and orb webs: the comparison of two hunting behaviours, SEB Seville 2019, Seville (ES), Selected Speaker

05/07/2018, Weibull statistics applied to spider silk, EUROMECH 2018, Bologna (IT), Selected speaker

05/07/2018, Spiders web: an example of structure composed by multi-functional Materials, EUROMECH 2018, Bologna (IT), Selected speaker

21/09/2017, Spider Silk and its Statistical Analysis, EUROMAT 2017, Thessaloniki (GR), Selected speaker

24/07/2017, Strength of spider web junction, Sheffield Silk Conference, Sheffield (UK), Selected speaker

15/06/2017, Il Tempo della Fisica e della Biologia: una possibile congiunzione?, Tempo tra esattezza ed infinito, Dipartimento di Lettere e Filosofia Tor Vergata, Roma (IT), Selected speaker

02/06/2017, Statistica alimentare: un approccio oggettivo per una scelta consapevole, Next Generation Chef, Alma-Scuola Internazionale di cucina italiana, Parma (IT), Selected speaker

Inspirational talks

My Ted Talk

Stepping onto the TEDx stage was not just a moment in time but a culmination of a profound journey. In my talk, I shared the intricate world of spider silks, biomechanics, and the awe-inspiring marvels that captivate both my scientific endeavors and personal passions.

Guided by a dream to inspire, my TEDx talk delved into the unseen intricacies of spider science, unraveling the secrets that these remarkable creatures hold. It was an opportunity to bridge the gap between complex scientific concepts and the curious minds eager to explore the wonders of the natural world.

I believe that spiders, as many other beautiful organisms, can really show us ways to improve our society!

CambiaMenti, Cosa ci insegnano i ragni?

My participation in CambiaMenti, sponsored by CARITRO foundation, opened a gateway to share the profound lessons spiders can teach us. In this talk, I explored the intricate world of arachnids, weaving a narrative that goes beyond their eight legs and silk-producing marvels.

CambiaMenti provided a platform to delve into the hidden beauty of spiders, uncovering the wisdom these creatures hold. From their silk-spinning prowess to their remarkable behaviors, the talk aimed to transform perspectives and foster a deeper appreciation for the often misunderstood world of spiders.

Do not miss the other talks of this event, which aimed to project several key concepts to change our future!

Spiders’ pills for deaf people, in collaboration with Counselis School

In a collaborative effort with Counselis School, I embarked on a mission to make science more accessible. Through the initiative “Spiders’ Pills for Deaf People,” we crafted a unique experience tailored for the italian deaf community. This trasformative project aimed to break down barriers, ensuring that the captivating world of spiders and science is enjoyed and understood by all, regardless of hearing ability. Join us in this endeavor to make knowledge truly inclusive and empower every individual to explore the wonders of the natural world.

Do not miss the other episodes: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, and the final. In the final I really challenged myself by trying to speak the deaf language!

Seminaries under invitation

07/03/2024, The importance of sharing, CARITRO foundation for Feltrinelli Education

09/01/2024, Spider silks are like potatoes: so many possibilities, University of Ferrara, Department of Physics

08/01/2024, Seta di ragno: il materiale che ha affascinato l’umanità, Università per l’Educazione Permanente di Ferrara — U.T.E.F.

23/06/2023, Le sete di ragno sono come le patate:infinite possibilità, PCTO Dietro le quinte della ricerca, Padova

24/05/2023, My experience in preparing a MSCA PF, Navigating Brussels (Brussels)

16/05/2023, My experience in preparing a MSCA PF, MSCA dedicated seminar SLU (Uppsala)

27/09/2022, Spider silks: the materials that have inspired humankind, CRC 1411 Design of Particulate Products, Nuremberg 

15/03/2019, Mechanical properties of fibres: an experimental approach, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm

01/12/2018, Spider’s diversity: the hidden beauty, Centro Antiveleni Ospedale Carreggi, Firenze. 

7/11/2018, Silk and Hairs: A biomimetic approach, University of Ferrara, Department of Physics

27/06/2017, Spiders and Scorpions in medical issues, Baxter Biopharma, (private class)

04/29/2017, Insegnamento a 8 zampe: I ragni e l’approccio biomimetico; Museo di Storia Naturale di Trieste, (Associazione Italiana di Aracnologia).

30/01/2017, Which technologies can we learn from spiders?, University of Ferrara, Department of Physics

7/11/2016, Spiders’ hairs: biomimetic approach, University of Ferrara, Department of Physics

17/12/2015, Spiders’ hairs: biomimetic approach, University of Ferrara, Department of Physics

Activities in Schools

I believe that communication is a crucial tool to improve awareness of science in the society. 

I have spent a lot of time in schools of every levels, organizing laboratories or simply giving lectures. Schools are the future of our society, it is thus very important to grasp every occasion to collaborate with them. 

Other Seminaries

07/03/2024, L’insegnamento ad otto zampe, Brand&Soda (Trento)

11/01/2024, Tessere trame tra discipline diverse: parliamo di ragni, Liceo Pascoli (Bolzano)

10/01/2024, Quando la Fisica incontra la Biologia: Parliamo di ragni, Liceo Scientifico Evangelista Torricelli (Bolzano)

07/10/2023, I Ragni e le Dolomiti, Festival dell’Arrampicata inclusiva, Dorsino (TN)

04/02/2020, Tessere trame tra discipline diverse: ad esempio la seta, Liceo Scientifico Roiti, Ferrara

25/11/2019, Tessere trame tra discipline diverse: la seta ieri ed oggi, Liceo Classico Ariosto, Ferrara

15/10/2019, Tessere trame tra discipline diverse: ad esempio la seta, Liceo Classico Ariosto, Ferrara

21/09/2019, Il Fascino segreto dei Ragni, Entomodena, Modena

17/09/2019, Aperitivo ad 8 zampe: il fascino segreto dei ragni, ANVA, Guidonia Montecelio (RM)

26/05/2019, L’allevamento dei ragni: un approccio consapevole, Reptiles day, Longarone

23/05/2019, Il Fascino segreto dei Ragni, Scuola SSPG di Aldeno, Trento

22/05/2019, Il Fascino segreto dei Ragni, Istituto Sacro Cuore, Trento

7/11/2018, Tessere trame tra Fisica e Biologia: parliamo di Ragni, Liceo Scientifico Roiti, Ferrara 

20/10/2018, Il Fascino segreto di Ragni e Scorpioni, Petsfestival, Piacenza

19/10/2017, Tessere trame tra Fisica e Biologia: parliamo di Ragni, Liceo Scientifico Roiti, Ferrara 

17/10/2017, Tessere trame tra Fisica e Biologia: parliamo di Ragni, Liceo Classico Ariosto, Ferrara

Tv Experiences

My journey in science communication has been enriched by engaging with various media outlets. Here are some highlights:

  • “L’uomo dei ragni” in Memex Doc [in Italian], Rai Scuola, September 17, 2017. [Watch Here]
  • “Spider Silk and Webs” in Memex – Galileo [in Italian], Rai Scuola, November 5, 2018. [Watch Here] [from min 21:25]
  • “Spiders” in Memex – Galileo [in Italian], Rai Scuola, October 26, 2018. [Watch Here] [from min 19:35]
  • Spider Silk in Linea Verde [in Italian], Rai 1, November 3, 2018. [Watch Here] [from min 1:40]
  • Interview on Scientific News [In Italian]: TG Leonardo (Rai 3), March 2021 [Watch Here]
  • Interview for Curiosity Stream in the documentary “Super Spider Silk
  • Interview and Participation for BBC Earth DocumentaryAmaze me
  • Live Interview and Participation in “La Banda dei Fuoriclasse” (Rai Gulp), December 9, 2021.
  • Live Interview and Participation in “Geo” (Rai 3), February 3, 2022.
  • Interview in Buongiorno Regione – Trentino Alto Adige (Rai), October 18, 2022, from minute 24:00. [Watch Here]

Teaching activities

I love teaching, and I hope that it will be a great component of my research path. For now, I have to limit myself to a few experiences:

2023 – Current – Invited lecturer for “Bioinspired Engineering” course at the Indian Institute of technology Madras, Chennai, India

2022 – Current – Invited lecturer for “Biomaterials and Biomedical technologies” Master course at University of Trento 

2021 – Organizer and lecturer in the PhD curse “Introduction to mechanics of soft materials” at Graduate School for Veterinary Medicine and Animal Sciences (Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences).

2016 – Current – Invited lecturer at the course Surface Physics and Nanostructures, Master Degree in Physics, University of Ferrara. 

Working/worked with