Micro- and nano-electronics is considered an essential technology, as it enables the development and growth of our society. It is explicitly mentioned in the most relevant strategic planning documents of Italy and Europe (eg: PNRR 21-26, European Commission, of which it is one of the Key Enabling Technologies, and the European Chips Act). Today, any technological development, in any sector, from telecommunications to biomedical, from mobility and transportation to energy, requires dedicated micro- and nano-electronic devices, which must be specifically developed and manufactured on large scale. The problem at an international level, identified with the term "chip shortage", which has clearly emerged in recent years, demonstrates how the world economy is increasingly bound to the availability of integrated circuits and systems.
To ensure the development of micro- and nano-electronic technologies in Europe and Italy, the huge economic investments guaranteed by the PNRR and the European Chips Act must also be accompanied by advanced training programs and initiatives.
The Industrial Ph. D. Program of National Interest (DM MUR n.226 of 14 December 2021) in Micro- and Nano-Electronics has, indeed, the objective of training researchers and professionals capable of responding to the challenges that the technological development and the aforementioned initiatives at Italian and European level are rising. It aims to build an Italian "ecosystem" for micro- and nano-electronics capable of preparing high-profile researchers, essential to capitalize on investments in the sector and, at the same time, allow Italy to play an important role in the technological developments of the next decades.
The Industrial Ph. D. Program of National Interest in Micro- and Nano-Electronics will create and enhance a community of young researchers, innovators and professionals on emerging and innovation-enabling issues of society and businesses, offering a stimulating environment for research and training. It will create opportunities for the exchange of knowledge and skills between students, as well as between students and public or private institutions. It will enhance and promote collaboration with the main national and international infrastructures and, together with them, will allow the interception of other European and non-European initiatives. It will offer training activities of transversal interest in the context of the main European references in research and innovation. The Industrial Ph. D. Program of National Interest in Micro- and Nano-Electronics will be ready to enhance the knowledge and skills acquired both in the academic world and, above all, in the industrial world, also with the creation of innovative start-ups or academic spin-offs, which represent an engine for technological developments.
In particular, the goals of the Industrial Ph. D. Program of National Interest in Micro- and Nano-Electronics are:
- to create and disseminate knowledge for research and high-tech industrial activity for high-quality employment;
- to enhance and expand the international scientific reputation of the involved universities;
- to support international partnerships with both research centers and industries.
High-tech education is an essential mean to support the technological and scientific growth of the new generations. It serves to create both professional figures with solid knowledge and positive background conditions for economic and social development.
For this purpose, the Industrial Ph. D. Program of National Interest in Micro- and Nano-Electronics aims to improve the students' professional skills as follows:
- background knowledge of technologies, circuit architectures and the ability to use experimental equipment;
- specific knowledge of modern high-tech electronic integrated systems;
- team and interdisciplinary working;
- creativity, problem solving skills and innovative ways of thinking;
- ability to use simulation tools;
- expertise in public speaking and report writing.
In order to achieve these goals, the Industrial Ph. D. Program of National Interest in Micro- and Nano-Electronics, besides the use of conventional technologies and CAD programs, dedicated educationsl programs, training-on-the-job periods in foreign Universities and/or companies, meetings with international researchers from both public and private research centers, design and layout of integrated circuits to be fabricated on silicon and tested, and writing of technical reports and scientific publications for magazine or conference proceedings, according to a standard defined by the Academic Board.