The Third Mission (TM) represents, along with the classical institutional duties (which include teaching and research activities at the highest level), an institutional responsibility of the Universities, to which each University, and hence every Department, has to respond in a differentiated manner according to its own competencies. The TM organically assembles several activities, at first sight dissimilar, such as scientific and cultural dissemination, patent invention, support for small, medium and large enterprises for their research and development activities, the obtaining and the management of research projects awarded through competitive bids, the creation of spin-offs and all other activities related to the research activity, organization of cultural activities, conferences, congresses and opening times to the territory in general.
The Department of Pharmacy (DP) operates in one of the sixty areas lagging behind in EU member states, in a region with few private investments in the research activity and with an entrepreneurial structure that is inevitably more fragile than the macro-regions of Northern Italy. In these conditions, the DP may encounter greater difficulties in achieving certain objectives compared to similar realities operating in non-depressed EU areas. The socio-economic environment in which we are located, makes the urge to bring on the territory contacts of international dimension.
Policies of the Department of Pharmacy (DP) on Third Mission Activities
From a historical point of view, the Departments at the former Faculty of Pharmacy, namely the Department of Experimental Pharmacology, the Department of Chemistry of Natural Products and the Department of Medicinal and Toxicological Chemistry, have always supported a whole range of activities that can be traced back to TM, even in absence of a formal predetermined organic planning.
In more recent years, and also further stimulated by the ANVUR evaluation process, the DP has adopted a policy through which the research system has opened upward, allowing the internally generated knowledge to be made accessible, thereby translating it into productive knowledge that has very interesting economic and social implications. The DP has systematically collected all the TM information and summarized in the various SUA-RD schedules of 2011-2014.
In order to better harmonize the information, and to analyze its strengths and weaknesses, the DP has an ad hoc Commission for Third Mission chaired by the Director of the Department, in order to propose new and more attractive strategies for the future, by indicating the objectives realistic to reach, within a reasonable time span.
The DP policy within the TM will further support activities that enable the transfer of knowledge technology and will do so by using the most suitable processes according to the purpose, but each of which follows its own logic and requires specific interventions (e.g.: Intellectual Property Management, Academic Entrepreneurship, Third Party Activities, Collaboration with Territorial Intermediaries).