Born in Milan on 8 May 1975, has a 5-year
University Degree in Biology and a PhD in
Agricultural Ecology. Employed at the Joint Research Centre (JRC)
of the European Commission (EC) from 2005 to 2008. Leader of the JRC team that developed a new system for rice yield forecasts,
operational for Europe since 2006, and successfully tested for
China and India during 2008. Coordinator of the
interdisciplinary research group that developed the WARM model
for rice simulations. WARM is used by the EC for rice yield
forecasts in Europe, China and India, and for food security
studies in Mali and Burkina Faso. WARM is also used within other
international projects (e.g., EU-FP7 projects E-AGRI, MODEXTREME,
network). Developer of new criteria for the evaluation of
biophysical models, formalizing for the first time the concepts
of model robustness, balance and plasticity, and proposing
statistical criteria for their quantification. Developer of a
new statistical method for determining the optimal sample size,
free from any statistical assumption and particularly suitable
for agro-environmental experiments. Designer and constructor of
instrumentation for the determination of biophysical variables
(e.g., a floating micrometeorological station, a machine for
determining the stability of soil aggregates, level sensors).
Developer of different framework-independent, multi-approach
software libraries for the simulation of biophysical processes
included in the BioMA platform, and of apps for smartphone for
3D scanning of canopy architectures, estimating leaf area index
and plant nitrogen concentration, and for VR nitrogen
fertilization. Coordinator of several national and international projects (e.g., Work
Package Leader in the EU-FP7 projects E-AGRI, MODEXTREME, ERMES,
and in the FIRST project SCENARICE). World Bank
consultant for a project aimed at assessing climate change
impacts on land use in Latin America. Assistant Professor at the State
University of Milan since 30 December 2008; Associate Professor
since March 2015. Founder and head of the CASSANDRA lab (Centre for Advanced Simulation
Studies AND Researches on Agroecological modelling).
Invited Visiting Scientist in Universities and Research Centers
in the USA and Asia.
Author of 92 publications on
international ISI journals with Impact Factor (31 as first author,
3 as single author, 43 as corresponding author).
h-index = 24 (ISI Web of Science Core Collection), = 24
Inventor of a floating
weather station (patent number
0001340669) and of an electronic apparatus for leaf
area index estimation (patent number 0001416127).
Awarded as 2012 Outstanding Reviewer by the
journal Environmental Modelling & Software.
President of the Board of Directors of CASSANDRA
TECH s.r.l., an IT company developing and releasing services to
support agro-ecosystems management.