Winner “Giulio Natta Award” for Chemistry
Dr.ssa Catia Bastioli
Thanks to her scientific studies and her entrepreneurial activity, Dr. Catia Bastioli greatly contributed to the field of bio-plastics and products from renewable sources, succeeding in applying research results to new industrial activities.
Over the years she has developed and tested the bio-refinery model of third-generation, in which the efficient use of resources, products with high added value, system economy and short production chains are the main objectives.
Thanks to her strong international activity in the field of the industrial development and the biodegradable plastic material, of the “white biotechnology”, of the biotechnology industrial processes with low environmental impact based on the use of renewable raw materials, Dr. Catia Bastioli contributed to spread and consolidate the positive image of the chemistry as fundamental science for the environmental impact decrease of the technology and industrial activities.
The above-mentioned reasons clearly account for a great merit, for which Dr. Catia Bastioli shall be awarded the 2015 Giulio Natta Award.
Born in in Foligno (Italy) in 1957, Catia Bastioli graduated in Pure Chemistry at the University of Perugia in 1981 and attended the school of Business Administration (“Alti Potenziali Montedison”) at the Bocconi University in Milan.
Her activity focused in the field of materials science, environmental sustainability and renewable raw materials at the Guido Donegani Institute, Montedison Corporate Research Center, until 1988. She then contributed in founding Fertec Research Centre on renewable raw materials, which later became Novamont, addressing more in depth the themes of environmental sustainability. At first as Technical Director, then as Director General from 1996 – after the exit of Novamont from the Montedison Group – and later as CEO, Catia Bastioli has turned Novamont from a research centre into a reference company
in the field of bioplastics and products from renewable sources, thus working for the acceleration of research-transformation processes into a new industrial reality. Over time, Catia Bastioli has been developing and field-studying the model of third-generation biorefineries, where an efficient use of resources is the primary objective and priority is given to high valueadded products, short supply-chains and a system-based economy. This represents a cultural development model before than an economical one, based on territorial regeneration that starts from decommissioned chemical sites and uses local
biodiversity and scraps in order to give origin to lowcost raw materials, capitalizing research and innovation and involving different stakeholders.
The innovative technologies developed for the bioplastics integrated supply-chain have led to the foundation and growth of a series of companies, that today form part of the Novamont Group. This is how Catia Bastioli is also Chairwoman of Mater-Biopolymer, CEO of Mater-Biotech, and CEO of Matrìca, joint venture between Novamont and Versalis.
Since May 2014, she has been Chairwoman of Terna SpA, the first European independent grid operator for electricity transmission.
Catia Bastioli has been the member of important EU working groups, such the ECCP-European Climate Change Program, the Committee for Renewable Raw Materials of the Directorate General Industry and the Environment Advisory Group of the Directorate General Research&Innovation of the European Commission. More recently, she took part in the foundation of the Public-Private Partnership on Biobased industries from its outset in February 2012, and since May 2013 she has been a member of the Bioeconomy Panel of the EU Commission, the key platform that closely assists the Commission in the implementation of the Bioeconomy Strategy in Europe.
Since 2009, Catia Bastioli has also been President of the Kyoto Club Association, and since 2014 President of the Italian Technological Cluster of Green Chemistry SPRING – Sustainable Processes and Resources from Innovation and National Growth. She is the author of many scientific and academic articles and contributions to international books and magazines about chemistry from renewable sources, bioplastics and biorefineries, as well as the editor of the two editions of the Handbook of Biodegradable Polymers published by Smithers Rapra.
She is also the inventor of around 80 patent families in the sector of synthetic and natural polymers and transformation processes of renewable raw materials. Among the numerous prizes she has received, we can mention the “European Inventor of the Year 2007”, awarded by the European Patent Office and the European Commission for her inventions related to starch-based bioplastics between 1991 and 2001. In 2008 the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural and Physical Sciences of the University of Genoa granted her an Honoris Causa degree in Industrial Chemistry, and in November 2013 she received the honorary title of knighthood (“Cavaliere dell’Ordine Al Merito della Repubblica Italiana”) by the President of the Italian Republic Giorgio Napolitano.