Research Institute on Sustainable Economic Growth


IRCRES ( (former CERIS, Moncalieri, Italy) is the main institute of CNR specialized in socio-economic analysis. 

Permanent research staff sums up to 28 researchers and technologists. 

  •  5 fields of research:
    •  Evolution of the Italian and European industrial system;
    •  Organization and sustainability of the large systems of contemporary societies;
    •  Socio-economic analysis of environment;
    •  Technological innovation;
    •  Evaluation of public policies
  •  5 Locations: Moncalieri (To), Genova, Milano, Roma, Torino. 
  •  Interdisciplinarity: economic, political, social sciences and humanities 
  •  Strong commitment to research dissemination and public participation in order to improve the impact on society.
  • Belongs to the Department for human and social sciences and cultural heritage of the CNR.


The researchers involved in (cyber)security studies are:

Elena Ragazzi, research director, expert in the cybersecurity (economic assessment and regulation) of the electricity system and in policy evaluation; 

Ugo Finardi, researcher, expert in innovation policies and in CS of the electricity system;

Giuseppe Giulio Calabrese, research director, expert in balance sheet and cost analysis

Lisa Sella, researcher, expert in quantitative analysis and policy evaluation;

Alessia De Santo, research fellow, joining projects on security and safety.

Considering the flat and fluid organisational structure of the institute, other colleagues may join the group in case specific methodological skills are required. 


The methodological approach is characterised by:

  • a micro-economic approach with support from other disciplines such as sociology, political science (regulation), economic history, psychology, anthropology;
  • quantitative methodologies (econometric models) and data sources (e.g.. balance sheets, labour market data-bases) supported by qualitative techniques (interviews, questionnaires, case studies);
  • New methods: econometric models applied to social enquiries, action research, focus groups, composite indicators, simulation, counterfactual evaluation….

Among the methodological competencies present at Ircres, the following may be mentioned:

  • Approach of mixed methods: full integration of qualitative and quantitative methods;
  • Net impact analysis with counterfactual approach. Design of experiments and quasi-experiments. Econometric methods for the estimation of net impact (parametric methods, matching methods, selection bias tests);
  • Composite indicators, including the calculation of composite indicators based on structural equation models;
  • Representative sampling techniques;
  • Use of accounting data for analytical, sampling and evaluation purposes;
  • Simulation methods, machine learning, big data and text analysis;
  • Analysis of efficiency and cost-benefit analysis.


  • Long lasting experience (starting from the Nineties) in the study of the electricity system and of other utilities 
  • Essence (Emerging Security Standars to the EU power Network controls and other Critical Equipment) It assessed the costs and the benefits of the adoption of security standards in the power system. Two case studies: Italian Generation and Polish Transmission (2012-2014).
  • Evaluating the prudency of cybersecurity investments: Guidelines for Energy Regulators We developed the guidelines on behalf of Naruc (the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners of the United States). The project addressed the cybersecurity of electrical systems in countries of the Black Sea area: Armenia, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine. But the content can be applied universally. The development of the guidelines was carried out with the constant involvement of regulators, operators and experts, as well as melting skills and knowledge from different disciplines. (2018-2020)  
  • CH4I (Circular Health for Industry) The project adopts a Circular Health approach in the management of the health industry in the Piedmont territory, covering not only aspects of human health, but also the welfare of animals in the food industry and the quality of agricultural productio,n in an interdisciplinary approach. The mission of the project is to build a methodology to collect and analyze data with artificial intelligence techniques. Ircres will do the impact assessment. (2021-2023)
  • Vip-moving The project will study the impact of a programme based on incentives to firms investing on workers’ safety. (2020-2022).
  • Involved in the CIGRE WG N° D2.54 “Regulatory approaches to enhance EPU’s cybersecurity frameworks” (2021)


Interested in developing new projects and joint initiatives on 

  • Performance metrics 
  • Regulation and policies
  • Socio-economic impact
  • Cybersecurity of critical infrastructures