The first chair of chemistry at the University of Padova dates back to 1749, when the Republic of Venice created the “Schola Chimica Theorica et Experimentalis”. Over the years, chemistry has always been a well-established subject of study in Padova, giving rise to three departments active in the fields of physical, organic, inorganic, analytical and industrial chemistry, which merged together in 2004 to form the Department of Chemical Sciences (DiSC). Nowadays DiSC hosts 101 tenure and tenure-track professors and researchers of the University of Padova, and CNR-National Council of Research and one researcher of the INSTM-National Interuniversity Consortium of Materials Science and Technology.

DiSC is the reference structure of four Bachelor Degree Courses (Chemistry, Industrial Chemistry, Materials Science, Science and Technology for the Environment), three Master Degree Courses (Chemistry, Industrial Chemistry, Materials Science) and a Specialization School in Evaluation and Management of Chemical Risk. Furthermore, DiSC hosts two PhD Courses: Molecular Sciences (www.chimica.unipd.it/sdsm, in collaboration with the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences) and Science and Engineering of Materials and Nanostructures (www.chimica.unipd.it/simn, with the Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Department of Industrial Engineering). In the last three years, both courses together offered, on average, 30 PhD scholarships per year. In that period, the Italian Ministry of Education funded about 50% of the scholarships, while the remaining have been financed by research Institutes and industries.

A total of about 1100 bachelor and master students, 81 PhD students and 50 post-docs are currently hosted by DiSC. 58 technicians and administrative staff provide services to support DiSC research and teaching activities. A quarter of DiSC postdocs and PhD students come from abroad, funded by European projects, international programs (UniPD-China Scholarship Council and Tianjin University, Kyungpook National University of South Korea and other specific agreements) and private foundations. A double-degree program is active between DiSC and the Jiustus-Liebig University Giessen for the Masters in Chemistry and Materials Science. DiSC delivers a wide educational offer, able to train professionals and researchers in the main fields of chemistry through teaching laboratories and an instrumentation park that has few analogues in Italy.

The Department has an internationally recognized leading role in the development of interdisciplinary aspects of chemical sciences with research projects supported by Italian and European funding. DiSC researchers contribute to molecular sciences for health, alternative energy sources, catalysis, sustainable chemistry, sensors and biomedical diagnostics. The Department was ranked second among the Chemistry departments of major Italian Universities in the national evaluation report analyzing the quality of research (VQR 2011-14) and holds a relevant position in various international rankings: According to Nature Index 2017, DiSC, among Italian chemical departments with 100 ISPD, has the highest scientific production quality). DiSC has been selected as Department of excellence by ANVUR (Italian National Agency for the Evaluation of University and Research Systems) to access 271 million euros provided annually, for the five-year period from 2018-2022, to strengthen and enhance research excellence. Our Department was one of the 180 italian departments selected to access these funds.