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Flood emergency: the University's extraordinary measures to support its community

To address the consequences of the floods, Rector Giovanni Molari has announced a series of financial, organisational, and scientific measures to help mitigate the suffering and damage sustained by the Multicampus university community

In these days of great emergency, Rector Giovanni Molari has shared with the members of the Student Council, the Academic Senate, and the Board of Directors a series of financial, organisational, and scientific measures for the University of Bologna community and flood-affected areas.

Economic and organisational measures for staff support

To support all technical and administrative staff, the measures concerning remote working (so-called "telelavoro", "smart working" and "lavoro satellitare") implemented since 19 May, are confirmed until 26 May. After this date, Heads of divisions and directors managers may continue to act on any specific cases, be they linked to the conditions of individual premises or to personal difficulties, facilitating extensions of remote working by way of conciliation.

To support all the staff affected by the floods, the University is currently conducting a detailed survey and has asked the Government to allow to take exceptional and immediate economic measures in our budget.

The University has also set up the "solidarity holidays paid leaves bank". This allows technical-administrative staff to give a part of their accrued annual leave holiday to colleagues in difficulty distress (to date, almost 700 days of leave have already been collected).

Lastly, colleagues in a difficult situation were granted an additional hourly credit of 36 hours to be recovered by 30 April 2024.


Teaching and economic measures for student support

With regard to teaching activities, all the measures already taken are confirmed until 31 August, to which new measures valid for the same period have been added:

- In-class lessons with blended mode and compulsory recording. If professors are unable to attend in person, classes will be online with compulsory recording;

- In-person oral and written exams. Online exams are available for students who make a justified request, or if professors are unable to attend in person;
- Online language proficiency tests;
- Extraordinary exam sessions in June and/or July;
- In-person internships/workshops. Online mode or possibility of rescheduling, also beyond the established deadlines, is allowed in case of particularly difficult situations;
- Blended mode for final exams according to the requests of graduating students.

There will also be an extraordinary graduation session in September, where not already scheduled.

Furthermore, the following financial support measures will be adopted for students affected by the floods:

- Extraordinary financial support to be assigned by means of a call for applications. The terms are being rapidly finalised to ensure the most timely intervention possible;
- Exemption from tuition fees for a.y. 2023/2024.

Part of the necessary funds was promptly made available by the Student Council, which drew on their available funds for improving student services.


Measures to support flood-affected areas

To support the most severely affected cities and areas of the Multicampus, the University will provide its scientific expertise in the fields of climate change adaptation, hydrology, hydraulic engineering, crop management and the recovery of flooded fields, landslide management and assessment, geomatic methods for detection and monitoring, telecommunication systems and networks during emergencies. Four specific groups of experts have already been established, and I wish to warmly thank them. They will be available to public institutions both for immediate support and for medium- and long-term plans.

The University will also support specific scientific projects of UniBo researchers aimed at promoting the safety and sustainability of our areas, and will organise cultural and social initiatives for fundraising purposes.

Finally, arrangements are being made to donate PCs no longer used for research activities to local public bodies and associations.

"I wish to thank the entire Alma Mater for its unity, generosity and solidarity showed in this time of emergency, in favour of both its own community and that of the cities in which we carry out our activities. -  says Rector Giovanni Molari - We will continue to give our contribution to mitigate the suffering of these days, to overcome the current crisis as quickly as possible, and to ensure that our individual and collective behaviour is increasingly marked by responsibility and the protection of the common good".