I graduated in geology at Sapienza University of Rome (Italy) with a thesis about the mapping of the Quaternary geology of a small intrapenninic basin in Central Italy, the Rieti basin. While mapping the continental sediments I tried to understand their depositional environments through micropaleontological analyses. It was this love at first site with ostracods, bivalved microcrustaceans, that marked my career. In fact, I did my PhD (Doctor Rerum Naturalium) in Germany, at the Ludwig-Maximilians University, with a dissertation on the "Taxonomy, biogeography and ecology of Quaternary benthic Ostracoda (Crustacea) from circumpolar deep water of the Emerald Basin (Southern Ocean) and the S Tasman Rise (Tasman Sea)".
Now I am a researcher at the Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche in Italy (National Research Council of Italy – CNR). I use continental sediments as environmental and climate archives. My research focuses on micro-crustaceans (ostracods), which provide information on parameters such as salinity, water depth and occurrence of macrophytes. Stable oxygen and carbon isotopes and trace element ratios of ostracod shells serve as additional proxies of environmental change. I mainly work in international multidisciplinary projects on Quaternary-Neogene records from the Mediterranean area, the Balkan area, Turkey (Central Anatolia), Arabian Peninsula and Eastern Africa. I am also involved in several geo-archeological projects about the evolution of the ancient harbours in the Mediterranean. I am very interested in ostracod ecology and sampled many water bodies in Italy, New Zealand, Albania, Turkey and Yemen to learn more about the ecological preferences of species for applications of Quaternary ostracods as indicator taxa, and to establish transfer functions for quantitative palaeoenvironmental reconstructions.