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Public engagement

Alongside the two fundamental objectives of training and research, the University pursues a third mission, i.e. promoting the enhancement and use of knowledge to contribute to the social, cultural and economic development of society.

In this perspective, every structure within the University is committed to communicating and disseminating knowledge through a direct relationship with the territory and its stakeholders.

As part of the Third Mission activities, numerous initiatives have been activated, some of which have taken on a stable and structural nature in the Department's activity.

Some of these are:

Festival of civilian poetry

Festival admitted to UNESCO's World Poetry Directory. Since 2005, the only Italian festival based on an important aspect of contemporary poetry. With an annual Lifetime Achievement Award that brought Adonis, Luciano Erba, Evgenij Evtuschenko, Juan Gelman, Titos Patrikios, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Maria Luisa Spaziani to Vercelli in past editions. Organised by the Il Ponte cultural association (Prof. Baldissone and various teachers of the Languages course). 

Festival of Philosophy

This sets out to offer participants a day of reflection, discussion and study on philosophical themes or on cultural topics of interest to young people, considered from a philosophical perspective. One essential aspect of the event is that the philosophical contributions are offered - in the form of reports, interventions or summaries of the group discussions - by young scholars or students (Prof. Pagano).

Laboratory Project CineMusLab UPO12

The Laboratory CineMusLab UPO12, of P. Zambrano and S. Sini (with the Fondazione Museo del Tesoro del Duomo and Archivio Capitolare of Vercelli) implemented, with the directors K. Artiuchov, V. Asmirko, A. Uccelli and A. Zarino the shooting of a 21-minute docu-film (screened at the Cinema Italia of Vercelli on 30 May 2012) on the history and heritage of the Archbishop's Palace of Vercelli, the Cathedral Treasure Museum and the Capitulary Archive. Conferences and exhibitions accompanied the project.

Conferences of the Italian Associaton of Classical Culture

The "Marinone" Centre has been involved for years (with the support of the Cassa di Risparmio di Vercelli Foundation) in the dissemination of knowledge on classical Greek and Roman antiquity, annually organising a series of conferences with the Italian Association of Classical Culture - AICC (branch of Vercelli). The Association is based in the "Marinone" Centre and is chaired by Prof. Maria Pia Saviolo Magrassi, a former student of Nino Marinone. The videos of conferences of the last few years are available on the website (prof. Battezzato, prof. Tabacco, prof. Vanotti).

Arborio Mella Foundation

Study, research and cataloging project (SigecWEB-ICCD programme, Central Institute for Cataloging and Documentation, Mibact) of the Arborio Mella drawing collection of the State Archives of Vercelli (regulation of agreement with A.S.V., 12 December 2013, head of project Professor P. Zambrano). Since 2014, the Department of Humanities has been accredited as a Mibact Filing Body at the Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism (MIBAC-IC-CD SG10 0000198 16/01/2014 C.I. 34.07.31/15.2).

English Presentation Project

The project was set up in 2012 within the course of studies in Modern Foreign Languages, with the spirit of promoting synergy between the University and the region. The main objective of the project is to create direct contact between groups of English-language specialism students and the local economic reality, for the promotion of eastern Piedmont strengths: from the lively economic-productive activities to the natural, cultural and artistic beauties . The project puts students in contact with the Chambers of Commerce of Biella and Vercelli (with which two agreements have been stipulated), Federmanager Vercelli and Piedmont companies.


The TiLLiT project (Theatre in Language, Language in Theatre) has been active for over ten years now. It aims to promote the use of theatrical practices in the teaching of foreign languages and is a teaching activity recognised by the Department. In 2014, Tillit won the 15th edition of the European Language Label, the European Union title that is awarded every year to projects capable of giving a significant boost to language teaching, through innovations and teaching practices.

Marazza Award for Young People

This is a special section dedicated to young upper secondary school students in the provinces of Novara, Vercelli, Biella and Verbano Cusio Ossola and university students residing there. The test consists of a poetic translation from an ancient or modern language, chosen by the competitor from among the following: Latin, Greek, French, English. It takes place annually. The collaboration between DiSUM and the Marrazza Foundation has been active for several years.

 “Raccontare e raccontarsi” Project

The study course in Languages, with the support of the Compagnia di San Paolo and collaboration of school and city institutions, has organised a series of meetings dedicated to translation, as a practice of dialogue, intercultural and linguistic exchange and as a vehicle for social, political, artistic and cultural change (prof. Iuli).

PAS (Special Enabling Pathways)

The PAS (Special Enabling Pathways) must also be considered as third mission activities, activated in various categories of competition in the linguistic and literary field for teaching qualifications, organized in recent years by the teachers of the department, under the coordination of the CIFIS; these are aimed not at students but at temping school workers, and therefore are designed to be a transfer of knowledge.

Cultural Thursdays

A third mission activity has been launched in Alessandria in recent months, with some meetings with city authorities, local operators and cultural associations. In 2015, a meeting entitled "The opening of the degree course in Literature as an opportunity for cultural growth of the city" was held as part of the cultural Thursdays organised by the Culture and Development Association of Alessandria. Significant contacts have been made for an organic collaboration with teachers of secondary schools in the city of Alessandria, not only in view of an orientation activity for incoming students but also, and above all, in the perspective of integration with stakeholders of the region for ongoing cultural collaboration.

Webinair – promotion of the University’s Master degree programmes

At University level, the promotion of master's degree courses was carried out as part of the Communication Plan. Through the "Docsity" company, 5 webinars dedicated to the promotion of master's degrees were held. The first webinar was dedicated to DiSUM and the three degree courses were presented by the three Chairs (proff. Audeoud, Gandino and Vanotti). There were over 200 participants.

Useful Information

To allow each Department to organise their collection of data, the University has launched a census of all Public Engagement (PE) activities carried out by professors, researchers, research fellows, and PhD students of the University. On the DIR platform you can find all the useful information and record your PE