PERA, Marcello

Marcello Pera

Marcello Pera is an Italian philosopher and politician. He was the President of the Italian Senate from 2001 to 2006.

His academic career began 1976 at the University of Pisa. He then went on to pursue research activities internationally: Visiting Fellow, University of Pittsburgh, 1984; Linguistics and Philosophy, MIT, Cambridge, Mass., 1990; Visiting Fellow, Centre for the Philosophy of Natural Sciences, London School of Economics, 1995-96. He taught Theoretical Philosophy from 1989 to 1992 at the University of Catania. In 1992 he became full professor of Philosophy at the University of Pisa.

Sen. Pera has participated in many scientific workshops, conferences and congresses organised by universities and research institutes in Italy and abroad (among others Pittsburgh, Montreal, Berkeley, Thessaloniki, Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Coimbra, Cincinnati, Baltimore, Harvard, Berlin, and London).

He has written a number of articles and essays for Italian and international journals, in particular concerning scientific method, theory of evidence, and scientific argumentation. He is the author of a number of books, including The Ambiguous Frog. The Galvani-Volta Controversy on Animal Electricity (Princeton University Press, 1991) and The Discourses of Science (Chicago University Press, Chicago 1994); he has edited several publications, including Rational Changes in Science (co-edited by J. Pitt, Reidel, Dordrecht-Boston 1987), Persuading Science. The Art of Scientific Rhetoric (co-edited by W.Shea, History Publications-USA, Canton, Massachusetts, 1991) and Scientific Controversies (co-edited P. Machamer and A. Baltas, Oxford University Press, Oxford 2000).

In April 2005 Senator Marcello Pera was awarded the Fulbright Gold Medal.

In 2005, he co-authored a book with the then Card. Joseph Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI) entitled “Senza radici” (“Without Roots”), and is the author of the foreword of the book by the Holy Father “The Europe of Benedict”.

His latest book, "Perche' dobbiamo dirci cristiani" (“Why We Must Call Ourselves Christians”, 2008), has a letter-preface by Pope Benedict XVI.