A letter of the Scientific Director Giorgio Metta to the IIT’ers
First and foremost, I’d like to say “thank you” to all IIT’ers for getting organized quickly helping the Institute to go back to the “new normality”. I’m pleased to see that we’re indeed back on track as much as possible. I think that the response of IIT to the disruption created by Covid has been exceptional. Well done! In the coming months, as the limitations are progressively lifted, I hope that also our spirit will lighten up a bit. It’s been tough. I know that there were some of us affected directly by the pandemic. My thoughts are with them. For this reason, we have recently started a program to provide psychological support in relation to the events of Covid (you will receive an email soon with details).
Also, I’d like to thank all our people for working hard during the lockdown either by keeping our standard activities up and running (and in many cases even the labs open) or by working on numerous Covid-related projects. A special praise to all the support and administrative personnel that worked hard (believe me) to keep the “machine up and running”. It shows that we’re – once more – truly exceptional. We went into “remote working” mode basically overnight and, by and large, things worked out smoothly. Some of our labs and facilities helped the local hospitals, responded to requests from companies, designed components for the hospitals. Even more, you IIT’ers donated 10.000 euros to the “Protezione Civile”, which allowed purchasing protective masks for healthcare workers. Our researchers and technicians continued pushing the envelope in research and innovation (not necessarily Covid-related), going beyond the state of the art in all domains of research that IIT is involved in.
What’s next? We certainly live in a very peculiar historical moment. No need to say that it’s difficult to cast predictions (not even with AI!). I’m an optimist though. We work at the forefront of technology and innovation. These will be more important than ever in the near future. A future where our robots, nanomaterials, life technologies, neuroscience and computation will make a difference. I’m pretty sure this will be the case in general. It’s up to us to be the main actors in shaping this future.
I feel lucky and proud to be at IIT! Keep up with the good work!