by Mattia La Torre and Diego Parini
A little more than a year after the election, Research and Innovation at the center of the political agenda of Antonella Polimeni, Provost of Sapienza.
The first female Provost of Sapienza elected with more than 60% of votes, in this first year of mandate, do you believe that your work has been supported by the Sapienza community?
Absolutely yes. A very large governance team with colleagues who are contributing significantly to the achievement of planned objectives which, moreover, we had shared. This 60% and the election occurred at the first election sessionis the result of a shared goal, and I must say that there is great enthusiasm. We are satisfied with the work done, but there is still a lot to do.
In a recent interview, you said that your “strength is the value of the example“, and that your “determination comes from this“. Do you feel today that you can be that example?
I hope to be, I have always believed in the value of examples, and I have benefited from examples: in my academic career I was lucky enough to meet a high school teacher who was a beacon for me; when I entered the university, I had a professor who made me fall in love with university teaching; I had an example of commitment and determination that came from my father. I have a life partner, my husband, who supports me. However, not everyone has been lucky enough to have “equal opportunities for equal ability”, this has always been my motto. I have had equal opportunities because I have had support from my family and I had the opportunity to have a person to help me at home and also my two children, the oldest is now 30 and the youngest daughter is 27. We must work so that all women have equal opportunities.
Since you became Provost, we have not seen a decline in your scientific production. This shows that it can be done, assuming however that it is tiring. In the past year, have there been moments in which you have thought about temporarily putting aside research?
Never. Absolutely not, because being Provost, is still a pro tempore position. We are and continue to be teachers, researchers and doctors.
Your communication strategy is very focused on making Sapienza and its activities known externally, and the Third Mission of the Universities is precisely outreaching. In your opinion, what are the most effective tools for reaching society and bringing it closer to the university world?
First, disseminate the scientific results of all areas of knowledge that Sapienza hosts, in an understandable way, because there is everything in Sapienza. Secondly, to make our university city permeable to citizens. We are working on this, but I don’t want to give any previews…
With the PNRR there will be strong investments for both young people and researchers. What will it mean for Sapienza?
Next week we will bring all the calls in which Sapienza has applied to Administrative Council. Sapienza has applied on all National Champions. It is about to apply as a Hub to the extent of ecosystems and innovation. It will apply on Extended Partnerships. In the end, we will also bring this to a University Conference, once all the calls have been completed. With the tool of the University Conference, which now with the streaming and digitisation that we have forcibly done will help us, and we will be pleased to share with our entire community – see the article “Le sfide del PNRR“
We are very curious. The dedication and openness that you and the Governance are putting in place are strong signals for the future of Sapienza.
Let us make sure that this wonderful institution of ours, which is Sapienza, which I have always considered a casket, and I continue to consider it, wipes off some dust.
Antonella Polimeni, Medical Doctor specialist in Odontostomatoly and Orthodontics, Provost of Sapienza University of Rome