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PhD Programme in 


Length: 3 years
Organizing university: University of Trieste
Official language: English
Credits: 20
Admission: by selection 
Application deadline: 13 June 2024 01:00 pm (CEST)

Organizing Department

PhD Programme website

Call for applications

In this section you will find competition notices.

Board of Examiners

In this section you will find the Board of Examiners of the competition.

Assessments and shortlist

In this section you will find the competition assessments and shortlist.

  • Development of new techniques for the study, manipulation and visualization of nanomaterials and nanostructured materials at the nanoscale.
  • Development of sensors based on nanotechnologies
  • Study of the relationships between structures and properties of materials
  • Synthesis and engineering of nanomaterials and nanostructured materials
  • Applications of nanotechnologies, nanomaterials, and nanostructured materials in the field of nanobiomedicine, pharmacology, energy, materials engineering, and generally in industrial relevant areas.
  • Theoretical approaches and molecular modelling for nanomaterials and nanotechnology related phenomena 

The PhD in nanotechnology provides multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary preparation for research in the fields of nanotechnology and nanoscience to students graduated from various scientific disciplines such as Physics, Chemistry, Engineering, Biology, and Medicine. The Programme involves courses, taught by both university professors and researchers from research institutions and affiliated companies, aimed at complementing the education received in the students' undergraduate programs. Even if the courses are specialized, they are taught in a manner that is understandable to students from different academic backgrounds. All activities of the program are conducted in English.

Each year students, upon admission to the following year, are evaluated by specialized committees appointed by the Coordinator and the PhD Academic Board. The Academic Board and the Advisory Board ("Consiglio dei docenti") of the Programme consist of faculty members from five different university departments, reflecting the multidisciplinary nature of the PhD Programme, as well as researchers from research institutions and companies. This ensures strong integration of the Programme within the scientific community in Trieste, which boasts internationally renowned research centers and facilities (such as the Elettra Synchrotron, FEL Fermi, CNR-IOM Institute, Area Science Park, CRO Aviano, ICTP) and provides students with access to advanced research strumentation and scientific expertise, an international scientific environment to enhance their skills and an inclination towards scientific and technological research that transcends national barriers, offering advantages for their future careers. Additionally, two employees from participating companies are part of the Academic Board, ensuring effective connection of the Programme to industrial interests and facilitating students' placement in research and development positions relevant to the production chain upon completion of the Programme.

The Programme is part of an international network of PhD programs called PCAM, consisting of prestigious European universities, which organizes student and faculty exchanges and schools on frontier scientific topics in materials science and nanotechnology. The PhD Programme also organizes an annual workshop attended by all students and members of the Academic/Advisory Board, during which students present scientific reports on their research activities. Students are strongly encouraged to present their results in a way that is understandable to a non-specialist audience. At the conclusion of the workshop, awards are granted to students: one for demonstrated ability to communicate science in a simple manner and one for multidisciplinarity. External scientists and alumni are generally invited at workshops in order to present their professional experiences after completing their PhD.

The main goal of the PhD Programme is to train researchers and, in general, professionals who are able to design, build and characterize nanomaterials and nanostructured materials (NSM), as well as tools and devices for applications in the field of nanotechnology. Thanks to the strongly interdisciplinary nature of the training offered, students upon completion of the Programme will be able to meet both the growing practical needs to make industrial production more effective, economical, and sustainable and the needs for innovation and progress of society. The Programme is for graduates from different fields who intend to acquire high-level preparation by attending courses and seminars in areas even beyond their own expertise and dedicating themselves to research in collaboration with national and international research institutions and industries. The implementation of specific training and research paths is discussed by the PhD Academic Board and the Advisory Board, which includes representatives from relevant research institutions and companies with interests in the field of nanotechnology. During the XL cycle a new consultative body will be established and it will be composed of representatives of students, alumni, internationally relevant research institutions and external experts from companies operating in the field of nanotechnology. It will provide a further formal opportunity to align educational and research paths and the Programme's aims with the constant evolution of nanoscience and its applications in technological and industrial fields and to adjust the profile of graduating students according to the needs of companies and research institutions. Furthermore, it is intended to establish a group dedicated to quality assurance of the PhD Programme, which will, among other things, be responsible for verifying the achievement of the Programme's goals and possibly proposing their updating to the Academic Board. A proposed composition of the group includes the participation of student representatives and members of the Academic Board, also belonging to research institutions and companies. The general research aims are: 1) Synthesis and engineering of nanomaterials and NSM; 2) Development of new techniques for the study, manipulation, and visualization on a nanoscale of nanomaterials and NSM; 3) Study of the relationships between the structure and properties of materials; 4) Theoretical approaches and molecular modeling of nanomaterials and phenomena of interest for nanotechnologies; 5) Development of sensors for the detection of biomolecules or compounds present in very low concentrations; 6) Applications of nanotechnologies, nanomaterials, and NSM for research in the energy sector; 7) Application of nanotechnologies, nanomaterials, and NSM in the medical, pharmaceutical, biomedical sectors.

Job opportunities for students who have a PhD in Nanotechnology continue to increase over the years, especially in Italy, because the market demand for professionals with this type of multidisciplinary training grows in parallel with the implementation of nanotechnologies in both Italian industry and international research. The sectors are highly diversified due to the pervasiveness of nanotechnologies: food, energy, electronics, manufacturing, medical, biological, physics, chemistry, and cultural heritage. The PhD Programme in Nanotechnology at the University of Trieste, characterized by a strong multidisciplinarity, trains professionals suitable for roles such as researchers, research and development managers, laboratory or project managers in both public and private institutions where skills to manage research projects involving specialists from various disciplines are required. Furthermore, a PhD in Nanotechnology can also take on organizational and managerial responsibilities in industrial sectors and service industries related to advanced technologies and innovation. The strong collaboration with research institutes and organizations in Italy and internationally, as well as with companies, offers new PhD graduates numerous job opportunities.


Alberto Morgante - Coordinator

Phone: 040 5582781 - 040 3756475 - 040 3758286

Department of Physics
Via Valerio 2 - 34127, Trieste

Paola Posocco - Deputy Coordinator

Phone: 040 5583448

Department of Physics
Via Valerio 10 - 34127, Trieste

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