Organisational structure of Faculties and Institutes


Faculties are considerably independent inside the USI organisational structure in terms of education and research. Their main structure is described in USI Statute and includes the following bodies:

  • Dean’s office

The Dean’s office is formed by the Dean and Associate Deans. The Dean, assisted by the Associate Deans, leads and manages the Faculty by implementing the decisions of the Faculty Council and the Board of Professors. The Dean represents the Faculty in the University Council.

  • The Faculty Council

The Faculty Council rules on all matters related to the Faculty’s general interest, in particular on education and research. It implements study plans and regulations, defines the search criteria for open academic positions, and appoints the Faculty representatives within the University internal and external bodies. Chaired by the Dean, the Faculty Council includes all permanent faculty (Full, Associate, Assistant, and Adjunct Professors), student representatives, and junior academic representatives (assistants, clinical Professors, Architects and Design Studio staff members, research fellows, teaching assistants and lecturers).

  • Board of Professors

The Board of Professors (also known as the restricted Faculty Council) identifies the Faculty members that are called upon to sit in a commission for the appointment of professors, assigns courses to lecturers, and proposes the awarding of Honoris Causa and Professor Emeritus. It is chaired by the Dean and includes all Tenured Professors (Full and Associate).

For specific details and peculiarities on the organisational aspects of each Faculty and Institutes and Laboratories please refer to their relative statutes:



The Management Committee

The Management Committee coordinates relationships among the Faculties and between Faculties and the Rectorate. It assists the Rectorate in managing the University, and it is formed by members of the Rectorate and by the Faculty Deans.


Current Deans:

Walter Angonese

Director of the Academy of Architecture

Graduated from IUAV in Venice, he has taught at the University of Innsbruck, and was Visiting Professor at Wien, Palermo, Reggio Calabria, Munich, Zurich, Milan, Porto and Viseu. He has received many awards for his work as an architect. He has been Director of the Academy of Architecture since 1 September 2021.

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Giovanni Pedrazzini

Dean of the Faculty of Biomedical Sciences

Giovanni Pedrazzini is co-Head of cardiology at Cardiocentro Ticino and Full professor at the USI Faculty of Biomedical Sciences. He completed his medical studies at the University of Lausanne and then specialised in Internal Medicine and Cardiology in Bern and Zurich. He has been active at Cardiocentro Ticino since its opening in 1999, first as Head of the interventional cardiology service, then as Deputy head and finally as co-Head of cardiology. Since 2012, he holds a venia legendi at the University of Zurich. Author of numerous scientific publications, Giovanni Pedrazzini is a member - among others - of the Swiss Society of Cardiology, of which he is President, the European Society of Cardiology, the Swiss Society of General Internal Medicine and the Medical Doctors Association of the Canton Ticino. He is Dean of the Faculty of Biomedical Sciences from January 1st, 2021. 

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Luca M. Visconti

Dean of the Faculty of Communication, Culture and Society

Luca M. Visconti is Full Professor of Marketing at USI IMCA (Institute of Marketing and Communication Management) and at ESCP Europe, Paris. He is Lecturer at IFM (Institut Français de la Mode) and Sciences Po, Paris. Prior to his current appointment, he was Full Professor at ESCP Europe (2011-2017) and Lecturer in Marketing at Università Bocconi (1999-2011), where he received his Ph.D. in Business Administration and Management. He has been Visiting Scholar at Leeds School of Management, University of Colorado (2004-2005), and at École Supérieure des Affaires, Université de Lille2, Lille (2007-2008 and 2010). Since September 2020, he is Dean of the Faculty of Communication, Culture and Society.

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Gianluca Colombo

Dean of the Faculty of Economics

Gianluca Colombo is Full Professor of Management at the Faculty of Economics. Previously he was Full Professor at Università dell’Insubria, and Associate Professor at Bocconi University in Milan and at Università degli Studi in Pavia. His other previous roles: Deputy Professor at the Sapienza University of Rome; Visiting Professor at the EM Lyon business school, at Aix-Marseille III University, and at Università Federico Santa Maria di Valparaiso (Chile). Prof. Colombo is member of EURAM (European Academy of Management), and of the Academy of Management. He has published several books and academic articles in the fields of strategic management, M&A, complexity theory, entrepreneurship, and family business –the latter for which he is a consultant. Prof. Colombo is the Director of the USI EMBA - Executive Master of Business Administration. He is Dean of the Faculty of Economics from September 1st, 2019.

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Marc Langheinrich

Dean of the Faculty of Informatics

Marc Langheinrich (1971) is a Full Professor for Computer Science at USI, where he heads the Research Group for Ubiquitous Computing since September 2008. He received a masters degree (Diplom) in computer science from the University of Bielefeld, Germany, in 1997, and his PhD (Dr. sc.) from the ETH Zürich, Switzerland, in 2005. Starting in the fall of 1995, he spent a year as a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Washington, where he also completed his thesis work in the fields of information retrieval and software agents. In the fall of 1997 he joined NEC Research in Tokyo, Japan, where he worked on projects involving personalization and electronic commerce. From Oct.’99 to Aug.’08 he was a researcher at the Institute for Pervasive Computing at the ETH Zürich, Switzerland. His main research interests are privacy, security, and usability issues, in particular in the areas of ubiquitous and pervasive computing. He has been Dean of the Faculty of Informatics since 1 September 2021.

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According to the USI statute, Institutes are defined as training and research units supported by one or more Faculties, subject to approval by the University Council.

The responsibilities, tasks, organisation and members of the Institutes are defined by specific agreements between the Faculties and the Rectorate. These agreements set the scope and limits within which an Institute can engage in its own right with third parties. The contract has limited duration and is renewable. The Institutes do not have a distinct legal personality and are headed by a Director appointed among professors (Full or Associate) of the Institutes, according to the terms of agreement.

They can be:

  • institutes of the University;
  • institutes affiliated to the University – subject to the University strategies while maintaining administrative autonomy;
  • joint institutes
  • institutes associated to the University – institutional collaboration between the University and the entity in the areas of interest, not involved in the University strategic planning and maintain administrative autonomy.

Specialised sub-units can be created inside the Institutes (centres, observatories, laboratories), with the aim of carrying out specific research projects.