University of Salento
via prov. Lecce Monteroni sn,
73100 Lecce, Italy

Italy is one of the founders of LifeWatch ERIC and hosts its Service Centre. LifeWatch ERIC has always been strongly supported by the national scientific community, as well as regional and national institutions, since Italy is a biodiversity hotspot in Europe, with more than 57,400 animal and 6,500 plant species. Italian landscapes and protected areas are natural laboratories for biodiversity and ecosystem research.

The LifeWatch Italy webportal provides a networking interface for the biodiversity and ecosystem community, offering learning and training opportunities, semantic resources and data, ICT services & VREs, supporting research activities and science-based policymaking.

What We Do


LW ITA implements controlled vocabularies and ontologies to support the interoperability of different data infrastructures.
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LW ITA provides platforms and learning environments combined with gaming resources, specifically designed for students.
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Data & Metadata

LW ITA makes data and metadata accessible, interpretable and reusable.
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Citizen Science

LW ITA is currently working on the release of its brand new Citizen Science platform.


LW ITA ICT provides and shares ICT Services for the study of biodiversity and ecosystems.
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LW ITA develops and makes available VREs dedicated to major scientific issues (e.g. alien species, Phytoplankton).
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The Italian Ministry for Universities and Research (MUR) and the Italian National Research Council (CNR) lead the Italian contribution to LifeWatch ERIC and the activities of its distributed centre, in close cooperation with the Ministry for Environment, Land and Sea Protection.

Organised as a Joint Research Unit (JRU), LifeWatch Italy is coordinated by the department of Earth system science and environmental technologies of the CNR. The General Assembly and the Coordination and Management committees oversee its governance.

The JRU counts among its many members the most important institutions active in this domain, including the General Secretariat of the Presidency of the Republic (Castelporziano Presidential Estate), the National Academy of Sciences, the National Institute for Nuclear Physics, the National Institute of Oceanography and Applied Geophysics, the Anton Dohrn Zoological Station and the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Bari, as well as many universities, regional agencies and private bodies (please see here for the full list of members).


News from LifeWatch Italy

General Assembly Members

Alberto Basset

Alberto Basset

Alberto Basset's Bio

Alberto Basset is the interim Director of the LifeWatch ERIC Service Centre and Member of the LifeWatch ERIC General Assembly. He is full professor of Ecology at the University of Salento, his research interests being in biodiversity organisation and ecosystem functioning with a focus on aquatic ecosystems.

He is past President of the EEF and the EuroMedLag and is on the board of editors of various international journals. He is Manager of the Joint Research Unit LifeWatch-ITA, which represents the Italian LifeWatch Support Committee, and has coordinated and participated in several EU projects.


The Bulgarian National Distributed Centre is represented by the  Agricultural University-Plovdiv.

To know more about how Bulgaria contributes to LifeWatch ERIC, please visit our dedicated webpage.