Polytechnic University of Turin
|Polytechnic University of Turin|
|Politecnico di Torino|
Seal of Politecnico di Torino
|Rector||Prof. Marco Gilli|
|Campus||Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 24, Torino 10129|
|Sports teams||CUS Torino (http://www.custorino.it/)|
|Affiliations||ESDP, TIME, CLUSTER, PEGASUS, CESAER|
The Polytechnic University of Turin (Italian: Politecnico di Torino, POLITO) is an engineering university based in Turin, northern Italy. Established in 1859, Politecnico di Torino is Italy’s oldest Technical University. In 2011 it was ranked among the top 75 engineering universities in the world and 1st in Italy by the Academic Ranking of World Universities.
The Regio Politecnico di Torino (Royal Turin Polytechnic) was founded in 1906, but its origins go back further. It was preceded by the Scuola di Applicazione per gli Ingegneri (Technical School for Engineers) founded in 1859 after the Casati Act and the Museo Industriale Italiano (Italian Industry Museum) founded in 1862 under the aegis of the Ministry of Agriculture, Trade and Industry. The Technical School for Engineers was part of the university, which led to technical studies being accepted as part of higher education. The country was about to begin a new industrial era, which the Industry Museum was to address more directly. Famous scholars and researchers, authorities in different subjects with characters to match, gave a decree to new subjects such as electrotechnics and building science. They were the first to have a vision of founding a school which dealt with the needs of people and society.
Following the model of the most famous European Polytechnic Schools, at the beginning of the 20th century the Regio Politecnico di Torino had various objectives. It began to contact both the European scientific world and local and national industry. Aeronautics began as a subject. Students from all over Italy came to Turin and found in the new laboratories built for the study of everything from chemistry to architecture in a lively and resourceful atmosphere. The future was already at hand. In the 1990s, new teaching campuses were opened in Alessandria, Aosta, Biella, Ivrea, Mondovì and Vercelli.
The Polytechnic has two main campuses in Turin: the Valentino Castle on the River Po is still the main teaching campus for architecture, while the Corso Duca degli Abruzzi campus is dedicated mainly to engineering. A new mini-campus at Alenia Spazio holds the first teaching year of engineering while Automotive Engineering is attended at Fiat-Lingotto.
The Polytechnic is currently extending the size of the campus in Corso Duca degli Abruzzi by constructing a facility which will almost double the current size of the Corso Duca building.
As well as being the site of teaching and research activities (the First, Third and Fourth Schools of Engineering), the main campus in Corso Duca degli Abruzzi also houses the Politecnico's governing and administrative bodies, plus its secretarial headquarters.
Vercelli is the location of the Second School of Engineering, which provides course in civil engineering, mechanical engineering and electronic and computer engineering.
Castello del Valentino (Castle of Valentino) is the seat of the Architecture Faculty of Politecnico di Torino. It is located in Valentino Park and was one of the Residences of the Royal House of Savoy. In 1997, it was included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. A site for both teaching and research, this campus hosts the First and Second Schools of Architecture.
The ancient castle was bought by Duke Emmanuel Philibert of Savoy on the advice of Andrea Palladio. The name Valentino, first mentioned in 1275, seems to derive from a saint called Valentine whose relics were venerated in a church which stood nearby.
The current structure is due to Princess Christine Marie of France (1606–1663), wife of Victor Amadeus I, who dwelt here from 1630. It has a horseshoe shape, with four round towers at each angle, and a wide inner court with a marble pavement. The ceilings of the false upper floors are clearly in transalpino (i.e. French) style. The façade sports a huge coat of arms of the House of Savoy. Works lasted until 1660.
Minor modifications were made in the early nineteenth century; at this time, too, much of the seventeenth-century furniture was carried off by French troops. For the next half century the palace was more or less abandoned and fell into a state of disrepair. Renovations were carried out in 1860 when it was selected as the seat of the engineering faculty of Turin; it has been further restored in recent years.
Today it is the central building of the Architecture faculty of the Polytechnic University of Turin.
Automotive Engineering 
The Automotive Engineering campus is housed in Fiat-Lingotto, Fiat's headquarters. Lingotto was an automobile factory constructed by Fiat from 1916 and opened in 1923. The design (by young architect Mattè Trucco) was one of its kind in that it had five floors, with raw materials going in at the ground floor, and cars built on a line that went up through the building. Finished cars emerged at rooftop level.
The most remarkable and famous feature of the building was the rooftop race/test track. It was the largest car factory in the world at that time. For its time, the Lingotto building was avante-garde, influential and impressive—Le Corbusier called it "one of the most impressive sights in industry", and "a guideline for town planning". 80 different models of cars were produced there in its lifetime, including the famous Fiat Topolino of 1936.
The factory became outmoded in the 1970s and the decision was made to finally close it in 1982. The closure of the plant led to much public debate about its future, and how to recover from industrial decline in general. An architectural competition was held, which was eventually awarded to Renzo Piano, who envisioned an exciting public space for the city. The old factory was rebuilt into a modern complex, with concert halls, theatre, a convention centre, shopping arcades and a prestigious hotel. The work was completed in 1989.
The building now houses the Automotive Engineering campus of Politecnico di Torino.
- First School of Architecture
- Second School of Architecture
- First School of Engineering
- Second School of Engineering
- Third School of Engineering
- Fourth School of Engineering
The main courses offered are architecture, industrial design, architectural engineering, aerospace engineering, automotive engineering, biomedical engineering, chemical engineering, civil engineering, computer engineering, electrical engineering, electronic engineering, environmental engineering, energy engineering, engineering physics, material engineering, mechanical engineering, mechatronics, nuclear engineering, nanotechnology, production engineering, petroleum engineering, telecommunications engineering and textile engineering.
Research alliances 
The Polytechnic has strong research links with local and international companies, reaching about 700 yearly research contracts with firms such as Thales Alenia Space, Intel, Motorola, Compaq, Ferrari, Fiat, General Motors, Avio, Agusta, IBM, Microsoft, Nokia, Pininfarina, Bosch, General Electric, STMicroelectronics and Schneider Electric.
The Politecnico di Torino is a member of
- CESAER (Conference of European Schools for Advanced Engineering Education and Research). CESAER is the association encompassing 57 leading European universities of technology committed to engineering education that is based on excellent research and close cooperation with industry and other societal actors.
- CLUSTER (Consortium Linking Universities of Science and Technology for Education and Research) which is a network of leading European Universities of Technology
- European Network for Training and Research in Electrical Engineering
- Top Industrial Managers for Europe (TIME) network
- European Spatial Development Planning (ESDP) network.
In the Academic Ranking of World Universities (2011) in "engineering/technology and computer science" category the university was ranked within top 51-75 universities in the world and in the same year in QS World University Rankings it was ranked within top 100 (88th). The university was ranked 35th in 2012 for electrical engineering in the QS World University Rankings. Many of the world's most celebrated architects and designers have graduated from Politecnico's Architecture school.
Moreover, its Automotive Engineering program, conceived in collaboration with Fiat Group, has been consistently ranked among the top three in Europe for the past ten years. Turin is the seat of Fiat, Italy's largest car manufacturer.
Professional opportunities 
Most of the graduates find jobs within a year from graduation. A special section called Jobs has been created to improve contact between students and industry.
See also 
- Politecnico di Torino Website (Italian) (English)
- Politecnico di Torino in Scientific American (English)
- CLUSTER (Consortium Linking Universities of Science and Technology for Education and Research) Website (English)