This is the official website for the 11th International Temperate Reefs Symposium (ITRS), which will take place from 26 to 30 June 2016 at the University of Pisa. This is the second time that the ITRS comes to Europe, after the 9th ITRS that was organized at the University of Plymouth in UK.

The ITRS is the world’s premier conference on coastal ecology and the use of temperate reefs as tractable systems for experimental ecology. This high profile conference attracts some of the most well renowned scientists in the field and provides a forum for senior and young researchers to communicate their most novel and exciting findings. The ITRS takes place in a friendly and informal environment and gives a unique opportunity to graduate and undergraduate students to interact with their peers.The ITRS will be preceded by a workshop on ‘Status, trends and conservation options of marine biodiversity’ that will provide a further opportunity for discussion and interaction (see the Workshop page on the website for further details and registration to the Euromarine workshop).

Why Pisa?

Known for centuries as one of the most celebrating centers of culture and science, Pisa represents a perfect location for the 11th International Temperate Reefs Symposium. The city of Pisa is the fruit of at least three millennia of history. First an Etruscan settlement and later a Roman colony, the recent bringing to light of one of the ports with old ships confirmed its central role in the Mediterranean Sea since the Roman era. The power of Pisa as a maritime nation grew and reached its apex in the 11th century when it acquired traditional fame as one of the four main historical Maritime Republics of Italy. Education has fuelled the local economy since the 1400s, and students from across Italy still compete for places in its top-ranking university institutes, which hosted famous scientists in the class of Galileo Galilei and Leonardo Pisano, known as Fibonacci. Pisa is also an architectural jewel: well-maintained Romanesque buildings, Gothic churches, Renaissance piazzas with lively street life, and the world-famous Leaning Tower lying in a magnificent square, which the poet Gabriele D’Annunzio dubbed ‘Campo dei Miracoli’ (Field of Miracles). Pisa can also rely on a privileged location within the Tuscany region, which hosts some of the most famous Italian natural, architectural and cultural heritages: the cities of Florence, Siena and Lucca, the National Park of the Tuscan Archipelago and the Park of Migliarino-San Rossore-Massaciuccoli. Last but not least, the region is also known for yielding high-quality products from luxuriant vineyards, thick olive groves and golden wheat fields.

The 11th ITRS will be hosted by the University of Pisa, a public institution of high-level research centers in many areas of science. Officially established in 1343, Pisa was one of the first European universities that could boast the papal bull ‘In supremae dignitatis‘, which guaranteed the universal, legal value of its educational qualifications. In 1486 a building known as Palazzo della Sapienza (The Building of Knowledge) was constructed and the image of a cherub was placed above the Gate “Dell’Abbondanza” (the Gate of Abundance), still today the symbol of the University. The Athenaeum was also enriched with the construction of the astronomic observatory, the University Library, the Botanical Garden and the Natural Science Museum. The University of Pisa hosts some 50.000 students per year, which nearly doubles the resident population of 80.000. This effectively makes Pisa a University Campus, a unique blend of culture, science and life that matches perfectly with the spirit of the ITRS.


  • Lisandro Benedetti-Cecchi
  • Fabio Bulleri
  • Steve Hawkins
  • Thomas Wernberg
  • Gray Williams


  • Lisandro Benedetti-Cecchi
  • Fabio Bulleri
  • Elena Maggi
  • Martina Dal Bello 
  • Luca Rindi
  • Chiara Ravaglioli
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