Fabio Pammolli

Fabio Pammolli

  • Full Professor, Economics and Management Politecnico di Milano

In his research, Pammolli combines different methodologies to cover a variety of topics in economics of innovation, management analytics, the economics of health and pensions, and the analysis of growth, diversification, and instability of multiproduct firms (h-index Google Scholar = 34). He is a leading expert in the economic analysis of science and technology policy, as well of biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. Is a coauthor of a book, on growth and instability of industrial firms (‘The Growth of Business Firms’, forthcoming with Cambridge University Press).
Pammolli served (2004-2012) as the founding director and president of the executive council (board of directors) of the newly founded IMT Institute for Advanced Studies (www.imtlucca.it), a public Italian graduate school. He managed the startup and establishment of the Institute as one of the five Italian Schools for Advanced Studies, designing the scientific mission of the Institute sand its financial architecture and sustainability. As the founding director of the Institute, he has presided over and directed its establishment as an international research university, which integrates education and research in the multidisciplinary analysis of a variety of socio-economic, engineering, and technological systems.
He served coordinating and presiding all the hiring committees for senior and junior faculty members, at the international level, across all the disciplinary fields covered by the Institute, from political economy to comparative law, applied economics, management science, control, statistical physics, computer science, and humanities. IMT was ranked as the first Italian university in terms of research output and productivity in the two national research assessment exercises performed by the National Agency established by the Italian Ministry of Research and Education for the years 2008-2010 (economics) and 2011-14 (overall performance).
From 2012 to 2016, Pammolli served as the scientific coordinator of Crisis Lab@IMT (www.crisislab.it) a multi year research project funded by the Italian Ministry of Education (Progetti di Rilevanza Nazionale, total funding 6M €) where IMT, in collaboration with the National Council of Research, has created a unique computational infrastructure and data repository to analyze the structure and evolution of a variety of economic systems in finance, energy, urban transport systems, industries and firms, scientific and technological systems, pension and health systems, with a focus on systemic risk, on crisis prediction and management, and on science and technology policy.
In 2013-2014, Pammolli visited four leading Universities in Europe and in the US. First, he was a visiting research fellow at OFCE (Observatoire Français des Conjonctures Economiques), Sciences Po, Paris, France: main focus on long term projections and policy evaluation in health and pensions as well as on research and evaluation of public policies at large. He was then a visiting research fellow, STICERD, The London School of Economics, London, UK: main focus on the relationship between specialization, diversification, growth, and instability of economic entities (firms, portfolios, regions, and countries), as well as on the economics of science and technology. In the US, he was a visiting scholar at the Department of Economics, Harvard University, Cambridge Ma. US: main focus: business firms growth and economics of innovation. He was a visiting research fellow at the Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems (LIDS), Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge Ma. US: main focus: analytical methods for analysis and control of complex sociotechnical systems. Over time, Pammolli has authored several reports on Science and Technology Policy in the EU, for DG Enterprise (DG Growth). In his collaboration with Woody Powell at Stanford University, he has developed a set of original techniques to analyze the specialization profiles of public and private research centers in the Life Sciences (see also F. Pammolli, 2002, “A Comparison of U.S. and European University-Industry Relations in the Life Sciences”, with J. Owen-Smith, W.W. Powell, M.Riccaboni, Management Science, 48(1), 24-43).
In 2013, his paper “Is Europe Evolving Toward An Integrated Research Area” in Science (http://www.sciencemag.org/content/339/6120/650.summary) has stimulated policy debate on the extent to which Europe can be considered an integrated research system, as well as on the programs that can be implemented to foster the competitiveness of European science and technology.
From November 2001 until November 2004, Pammolli served as full professor of economics and management, University of Florence, Italy, holding the chair of economics and management.
From November 1990 to November 2001, Pammolli was assistant professor (1990-1996) and then associate professor (1996-2004) of Economics and Management, University of Siena, Italy. In Siena he set up the Industrial Liaison Office of the University, defining its architecture and the project evaluation procedures (IP policy, licensing contracts, attraction and evaluation of industrial partners and collaborative projects with industry). Main fields of activity: health and medicine, life sciences and biotechnology, collaborations with SMEs. From 2001 to 2003 he served as the President of Toscana Life Sciences Science Park Organizing Committee, conceiving and designing the structure of the BioPark, completing its business plan, identifying core infrastructures and technological platforms, and selecting the first cohort of candidate projects.


  • 06/2020 - Quantitative Science Studies

    Connected from the Outside: The Role of US Regions in Promoting the Integration of the European Research System

    Considerable efforts have been deployed by the European Union to create an integrated Research & Development area. In this paper, we focus on the structure and evolution of the European collaboration network as reflected by patent data. We study patent networks representing collaborations between inventors located in different geographic areas. Existing studies seem to indicate […]

  • 06/2020 - Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

    Economic and social consequences of human mobility restrictions under COVID-19

    In response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, several national governments have applied lockdown restrictions to reduce the infection rate. Here we perform a massive analysis on near–real-time Italian mobility data provided by Facebook to investigate how lockdown strategies affect economic conditions of individuals and local governments. We model the change in mobility as […]

  • 04/2020 - Journal of Translational Medicine

    The Endless Frontier? The Recent Increase of R&D Productivity in Pharmaceuticals

    Studies on the early 2000s documented increasing attrition rates and duration of clinical trials, leading to a representation of a “productivity crisis” in pharmaceutical research and development (R&D). In this paper, we produce a new set of analyses for the last decade and report a recent increase of R&D productivity within the industry.

  • 04/2020

    A behavioral approach to instability pathways in financial markets

    We introduce an indicator that aims to detect the emergence of market instabilities by quantifying the intensity of self-organizing processes arising from stock returns’ co-movements. In financial markets, phenomena like imitation, herding and positive feedbacks characterize the emergence of endogenous instabilities, which can modify the qualitative and quantitative behavior of the underlying system. The impossibility […]

  • 10/2019

    Spatial heterogeneity in non-parametric efficiency: An application to Italian hospitals

    This paper introduces a new empirical procedure for the estimation of hospitals’ technical efficiency in presence of spatial heterogeneity. We propose a methodology that allows treating spatial heterogeneity independently of a predetermined reference to administrative borders. We define geographical spatial regimes, characterised by spatial proximity and homogeneity of relevant demand characteristics, within which to assess […]