Foto del docente

Francesco Rosario Ferraro

Full Professor

Department of Physics and Astronomy "Augusto Righi"

Academic discipline: FIS/05 Astronomy and Astrophysics

Curriculum vitae

Francesco R. Ferraro (FRF), born in Corsano (LE) on 14/05/1961.


  • 2018:  International Prize “L. Tartufari” for Astronomy granted by the Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei (Roma)
  • 2011-2016 – ERC Advanced Grant for the project Cosmic-Lab


  • 1989: PhD degree in Astrophysics at the Bologna University (UniBO)
  • 1985: Master degree in Astronomy cum laude at UniBO

    Current and Previous Positions

  • 2012- now: Full professor at the Physics and Astronomy Department (DIFA) of UniBO
  • 2006-2012: Full professor at the Astronomy Department of UniBO
  • 2002-2006: Associate professor at the Astronomy Department of UniBO
  • 1990-2002: Astronomer at the Bologna Observatory
  • 1989-1991: post-doctoral fellow at ESO (Germany)

    Supervision of Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Fellows

  • 1995-now: Supervisor of more than 80 Master Thesis at DIFA
  • 1995-now: Supervisor of dozens of PhD Thesis at DIFA (9 over the last 6 years)
  • 1995-now: Supervisor of more than 40 Postdocs at DIFA and INAF

     Institutional responsibilities

  • From 2016:  Director of the PhD School in Astrophysics at Bologna University
  • 2012-2018:  Member of the Board of DIFA
  • 2006-2012: Chair of the Professor Board of the 1st-level degree in Astronomy. Chair of the Professor Board of the 2nd-level degree in Astrophysics and Cosmology
  • 2006-2012: member of the Board of the Department of Astronomy at UniBO
  • 2012-2014: member of the National Committee for the qualification of Associate and Full Professors in Astronomy, Astrophysics, Physics of the Earth and Planets in Italian Universities (Abilitazione Nazionale)

    Commissions of Trust

  • 2018-2021: ESA member of the Hubble Space Telescope User Committee (Baltimore, USA)
  • 2013: Chair of the Galactic Panel of the Hubble Time Allocation Committee
  • 2012: Member of the Hubble Time Allocation Committee
  • 2012: member of the Board for the evaluation of the INAF research activity
  • 2007-2009: Member of the Time Allocation Committee for the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT)
  • 2008: Member of the Hubble Time Allocation Committee
  • 2008: Member of the ESO Observing Program Committee
  • 2001: Member of the Hubble Time Allocation Committee
  • 2001-2003: Member of the ESO Observing Program Committee
  • 2001-2003: Member of the Space Telescope European Coordinating Facility - Users Committee
  • 2000-2003: Member of the ITAL-FLAMES consortium within the ESO VLT FLAMES project, and scientific coordinator of the Bologna group
  • 1999-now: External Referee of the Time Allocation Committee of the Telescopio Nazionale Galileo
  • 1995-now: Referee for the peer-reviewed international journals: Nature, ApJ, MNRAS, A&A, AJ
  • 2000-2015: Referee of Grant Research applications for international agencies (Chile, Sweden, Spain, etc.)

Scientific production and overall impact -  FRF is author of more than 500 publications with more than  13,000 citations (h-index 69); more than 250 papers are in peer-reviewed international journals, 45 as first author. Four papers are published in Nature (3 as first author in the last 5 years). Most of the results obtained by his group have been yearly mentioned by the prestigious annual review “Astrophysics in…” edited by PASP, which reports on the most relevant discoveries of the year. FRF is an invited speaker at major international conferences on topics related to stellar evolution and dynamics and he was author of several international and national press-releases;

Over the last 10 years FRF published 125 refereed papers (with an impressive average production of more than 1 publication per month). Note that only a slightly lower publication rate (0.8 paper/month) is found considering the last 20 years. It is worth emphasizing that such an outstanding productivity is not due to large collaborations with hundreds authors, which are now common in physics and astrophysics, but is the result of a tireless research activity leading small groups of young motivated researchers: in fact, the average number of authors per paper is ~5. 

Funding record

2010-2016: PI of the project Cosmic-Lab funded by ERC with a Advanced Grant of 1.88 Millions of Euro.

2005-2010: PI of scientific grants (Progetti strategici d’Ateneo granted by UniBO; PRIN-INAF 2006 granted by the MIUR; “Space data analysis support” by the ASI; PRIN-INAF 2008) for a total of more than 500 Keu.

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