General description

CNIT is a non-profit Consortium of 37 Italian Universities, organized in 4 National Laboratories and 44 Research Units, and including also 7 embedded into institutes of the National Research Council (CNR). CNIT was created to develop research, innovation and training in the field of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT).

More than 1,300 researchers, belonging to the Member universities, collaborate within CNIT, together with more than 100 CNIT employees. The innovation and technology transfer of research results towards end users and industry is a primary mission for CNIT. It also promotes the collaboration between member universities and other educational institutes as well as technical and scientific collaborations with national and international research institutes and industries.

CNIT aims to

  • promote and coordinate basic and applied research for the solutions of practical engineering problems
  • develop partnerships among industries, operators, public and private research centers.
  • provide research post-graduate fellowships
  • stimulate initiatives of scientific divulgation.

In the recent past CNIT participated in hundreds of research projects, including European Research Council (ERC) grants and Italian nation-wide initiatives, and coordinated several European funded projects. In the first three years of the European Horizon 2020 program, 20 projects were awarded to CNIT.

CNIT was established in 1995. The Director for the term 2017-2019 is Prof. Nicola Blefari Melazzi, University of Rome Tor Vergata, the President is prof. Gianni Vernazza,, University of Genoa.

CNIT is organized in operative structures, namely Research Units (RU) and National Labs (NL). The RUs are normally constituted in the Member universities with a convention act which rules the RU inside the hosting Department. Each RU can include both university personnel, CNIT employees and scholarship students.

The NLs are structures owned and managed directly by CNIT and play an intensive research activity (design and implementation areas) on a national and international basis.

In the years 2014-16 CNIT managed:

  • 119 European projects (with a total of 29.6 M€)
  • 84 National research projects (with a total of 5.7 M€)
  • 194 Industrial projects (with a total of 12 M€)

The table shows the number of projects and the total funds managed by CNIT in the years 2014-2016.

Projects 2014 45 28 76 149
Funds 2014 8 M€ 2.2 M€ 3.4 M€ 13.6 M€
Projects 2015 46 35 70 151
Funds 2015 13.1 M€ 2.1 M€ 6.1 M€ 21.3 M€
Projects 2016 28 21 48 97
Funds 2016 8.6 M€ 1.3 M€ 2.5 M€ 12.4 M€

Research areas

  • Wireless communications
  • Optical communications and networks
  • Radar and surveillance systems
  • Satellite communications
  • Sensor networks
  • Cognitive networks
  • Multimedia signal processing
  • Security and privacy in ICT systems
  • ICT systems for l’e-Health, green environment, emergencies
  • Integrated photonics
  • Graphene applications to ICT and sensing
  • Quantum information