Dr Francesca Gherardi teaches Zoology, Conservation Biology, and Applied Ethology at the University of Florence (Italy). She received her Ph.D. in Animal Biology in 1987 and is currently a permanent researcher at the Department of Animal Biology and Genetics "Leo Pardi". Dr Gherardi is actively involved as a referee for more than 30 international journals. She is associate editor of the Journal of Crustacean Biology (USA), Ethology, Ecology, and Evolution (Italy), and Biological Invasions (The Netherlands). She has been also editor of Crayfish in Europe as Alien Species. How to Make the Best of a Bad Situation? (A. A. Balkema, Rotterdam, 1999) and of Biological Invasions in Inland Waters (Springer, The Netherlands, 2007). Dr Gherardi has coordinated six international workshops and held more than 100 presentations at international and national meetings and conventions. She directed or participated in scientific expeditions abroad, in particular in: East Africa (Somalia and Kenya), South Africa, Indian Ocean, Israel, USA, Western Australia, and Europe. In Italy, she worked at the Stazione Zoologica "A. Dohrn" in Naples. She has been the President of the International Association of Astacology (2004-2006) and a member of five other societies, including the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Crustacean Society. She worked as Summer Fellow at the MBL at Woods Hole in 2003-04 and as Visiting Scholar at the Columbia University in the City of New York in 2006. Dr Gherardi is the author or co-author of more than 140 scientific articles published in peer reviewed international journals, more than half devoted to problems of biodiversity conservation; she is also the author of eight reports commissioned by public administrations. She has participated in six EU projects, and in projects funded by NATO and by the Australian Nature Heritage. Dr Gherardi is currently a partner of the EU project "Environmental impacts of invasive alien species in aquaculture (IMPASSE)” and acts as supervisor for projects funded by the Ministry of University, the Ministry of Agriculture, and local administrations.
Claudia Corti received her degree in Biological Sciences at the University of Florence (Italy). Since 1981, she has been working at the same University in the Herpetological collection of the Zoological Section of the Museum of Natural History and then in the Department of Animal Biology and Genetics. She has been the managing editor of Ethology Ecology Evolution (Italy), coordinated international meetings, and held several presentations at meetings and conventions. She took part to many scientific expeditions abroad, mainly focused on the Mediterranean and Caucasus. In Italy, she collaborates with several institutions, including protected areas and parks. Dr. Corti is author of many publications and acts as a referee for different international journals. Since 1991, she has been a lecturer of Comparative Anatomy and of Experimental Biology. She is one of the coordinators of the Atlas of Amphibians and Reptiles of Italy (for Sardinia) published by the Societas Herpetologica Italica, and member of: the Council of the Societas Europaea Herpetologica, the scientific committee of Mediterranean Lacertidae, and the Societas Herpetologica Italica. Her main scientific interests include studies on the distribution of amphibians and reptiles in the Mediterranean, with a particular emphasis on islands and on the relationships between biodiversity conservation and agriculture. Recently, Dr. Corti has been elected as Honorary Fellow of the California Academy of Sciences, U.S.A.
Manuela Gualtieri is an associate professor at the Department of Zootechnical Sciences of the University of Florence, and lecturer in Microlivestock Breeding and Aquaculture. She is a member of five national and international associations, including the European Aquaculture Society, and is carrying out researchers into animal nutrition and aquaculture, with particular emphasis on the growth and quality of fish. She is author of one book and of around 70 articles.