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What happened to us recently?

Many things have changed since our last update. Firstly, congratulations are in order for Alfonso Semararo, Alessandra Urbinati, and Salvatore Vilella, who have successfully completed their PhDs. Meanwhile, Arthur Capozzi is in the final stretch of his third and last year as a PhD student.

The pace of change is fast: Mirko Lai is now a short-term Assistant Professor (RTD-A) at the University of Turin, I (Giancarlo Ruffo) have relocated to the Università degli Studi del Piemonte Orientale “A. Avogadro,” Alfonso Semeraro has taken on the role of Senior Data Scientist at Wind 3, Alessandra Urbinati is a Postdoctoral researcher at Northeastern University, Boston, and Salvatore Vilella is also a Postdoctoral researcher at the Università degli Studi di Torino. Consequently, this page has not been updated and may be discontinued sooner or later. Nothing and no one escapes change: even “Office 10z” will soon be home to a new generation of PhD students 😂🤨.

As the principal investigator and founder of this research group, I genuinely believe that the events of these past years have been extraordinary, to say the least. We’ve experienced joy, hardship, shared struggles, moments of lost and found motivation, and an unwavering trust in Science—though, at times, Science might have questioned its trust in us! I carry incredible memories of all the scholars who have been part of this journey, and none will be forgotten (or forgiven!).

My gratitude extends to numerous individuals, making it impossible to thank everyone. However, some deserve a special mention: Rossano Schifanella (my lifelong companion with whom it all began), Marco Milanesio (whose brilliant eloquence, vast culture, and superb humor are missed), Luca Aiello (who flipped the meaning of Leonardo Da Vinci’s motto “Tristo è quel discepolo che non avanza il suo maestro,” making me the happiest advisor in the world), André Panisson (arguably the most talented programmer and applied scientist I’ve encountered), Martina Deplano (whose ethical attitude and love for nature have been inspirational), and Marcella Tambuscio (my co-author on my most cited paper to date!). Special mentions also go to Johan Bollen, Alessandro Flammini, my Indiana University comrades who co-taught “Complex Networks” in Turin, and Leo Ferres, who unknowingly managed an unofficial branch of the ARCS group in Chile! Also, even if the time we spent collaborating with each other was definitely too short, Edoardo Galimberti, Alessandro Basso, Narges Azizfard, Mario Giacobini, Emilio Sulis, and so on and so forth.

I had the privilege of collaborating writing scientific papers with incredible colleagues in my former department: Francesco Bergadano, Cristina Bosco, Federica Cena, Rossano Gaeta, Michele Garetto, Viviana Patti, Matteo Sereno (in meticulous alphabetical order!), just to name a few. Their contributions are a testament to why working at the University of Turin remains one of the most enriching experiences I never anticipated having in my life.

What next? I always expect that the best has to come. Stay tuned!

Farewell, and thanks for all the fishes 🙂

(credits for the featured image to Mirko Lai!)

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