Centro per l’Eccellenza e gli Studi Transdisciplinari

The Association

CEST came into being when a few students and researchers from various Italian universities and Superior Graduate Schools (Grandes écoles) decided to create a network to strengthen the relationship between the academic world and civil society.

This was in 2013, and since then we have overseen more than 50 events in various Italian cities, involving more than 100 speakers.


Our mission is two-fold: on the one hand, we propose to bring young scholars closer to academic research, promoting opportunities of involvement and exploration at graduate and undergraduate level; in addition, we aim to foster dialogue between academic thinking and public debate, stimulating the critical analysis of cultural products of major interest.

We do this through a model based on the close interdependence among various fields of research, without excluding any discipline.

Indeed, the complexity of contemporary phenomena requires that analyses be conducted from multiple perspectives: today it is difficult to talk of neuroscience without taking account of the ethical implications they necessarily entail; it would be unthinkable to discuss Economics without considering its anthropological and legal aspects; it would be misleading to take an interest in artistic phenomena without placing them in specific social and political contexts.

Mixing the stature of well-known cultural figures with the passion of young researchers, combining ability and innovation, is the way we create and organise opportunities for study and debate, sharing with the public and readers the experience of a world to be interpreted by the categories of scientific research.

Over the years, we have collaborated with:

Biennale Democrazia in Turin, the ‘Luigi Einaudi’ Centre for Research and Documentation in Turin, il Circolo dei Lettori in Turin, the Municipality of Pisa, the Municipality of Turin, the Festival of Economics in Trento, the Corriere della Sera Foundation in Milan, the Il Nostro Pianeta association in Turin, the Scuola Normale Superiore in Pisa, the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies in Pisa, and the Universities of Milan, Pisa and Turin.