Computer Science @ GSSI

The Gran Sasso Science Institute (GSSI) is a centre for research and higher education and an international Ph.D. school in the areas of Computer Science, Mathematics, Physics and Social Sciences in L’Aquila (Italy). After its foundation in 2012 as Centre for Advanced Studies of the National Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN), the GSSI was established in March 2016 as a School of Advanced Studies providing post-graduate education.

This is the webpage of the Computer Science group at GSSI. The group carries out high-quality, interdisciplinary research on algorithms, formal methods, and software engineering.


Research in algorithms at GSSI focuses on computational problems arising in networks and multi-agent systems. Such settings are characterized by a large number of distributed or autonomous entities, an intrinsic stochastic nature, and temporally changing dynamic properties. As a result we typically may have only a partial understanding of the problems at hand and providing efficient computational solutions is a critical and important task in the fields of theoretical computer science, optimization, and artificial intelligence.

We approach these challenges from various perspectives including

  • algorithmic game theory,

  • efficient graph algorithms,

  • approximation algorithms,

  • computational complexity,

  • distributed computing,

  • stochastic optimization,

  • algorithm engineering.

We provide algorithmic solutions to the computational problems at hand and, in a mathematically rigorous way, explain the correctness and efficiency of our approaches.

Formal Methods

The research of the Formal Methods group focuses on complex reactive systems. In particular, we investigate formal specification, analysis, synthesis, and verification of concurrent and distributed systems. Our research spans a broad range of topics from languages, to semantic models, to software verification. We develop tool-supported techniques for reactive systems. In particular, we are active on

  • concurrency theory and process calculi,

  • foundations of multi-agent and cyber-physical, and collective adaptive systems,

  • formal modelling and specifications for concurrent and distributed computations,

  • bounded model checking,

  • performance analysis,

  • run-time monitoring,

  • choreographic models,

  • behavioural specifications,

  • verification of (non-)functional properties of systems and software.

The group's main application domains are complex distributed systems in general with a particular interest in agent-based, cyber-physical systems, and message-passing systems.

Software Engineering

The research of the software engineering group focuses on the systematic application of engineering approaches to the development of software. The group has experience on both knowledge-oriented research devoted to creating new knowledge and on solution-oriented research devoted to proposing new methods or approaches.

Our research spans over a broad range of areas, including

  • software architecture,

  • model-driven engineering (MDE),

  • open-source software,

  • empirical software engineering,

  • requirement engineering,

  • artificial intelligence (AI) and software engineering,

  • digital ethics,

  • autonomous and self-adaptive systems,

  • robotic software engineering,

  • software engineering for automotive,

  • Internet-of-things (IoT),

  • smart cities,

  • systems of systems (SoS),

  • cyber-physical systems (CPS).

We maintain stable international research collaborations with leading universities in Europe as well as outside the EU and good connections with international and local industrial partners that are interested in applying our research in their context.

We are involved in the main international conferences and journals in the above three fields of research.

See our Publications page for a complete list of publications by members of our group. See our Projects page for the international and national projects that we are involved in and the Tools page for the tools that are (co-)developed by members of our group.

Our research is reflected also in the courses that we teach to our PhD students. For the list of current courses, go to the Current courses page. For general information on the PhD program in Computer Science at GSSI, go to the Ph.D. Program page.

Where we are