Valerio Rossi Stacconi is research entomologist in Plant Protection Unit and responsible for the insect quarantine facility at the Foundation E. Mach (FEM) in S. Michele all’Adige (Italy). He addresses his research activity to the management of economically important pests, particularly invasive alien species, with the aim to provide environmentally sustainable and minimal impact pest management strategies for agriculturalists. His current work focuses on classical and augmentative biological control programs, natural enemy biology, and insect/plant interactions that may govern pest status.
Valerio earned a Ph.D. in Applied Entomology at the University of Perugia (Italy) working on the perception of host plant volatiles in leafhoppers and planthoppers vector of phytoplasma diseases on grapevine. He did international internships at the Instituto Superior de Agronomia (Lisbon, Portugal), the Biozentrum at the University of Wuerzburg (Germany) and the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology (Jena, Germany) specializing in confocal and electron microscopy imaging and electrophysiology techniques. After completing his Ph.D., he has been researcher and extensionist at FEM (2012-2017) and research associate in the Department of Horticulture at the Oregon State University (USA, 2018-2020).
Most of his research has an extension component since he works closely with growers, stakeholders, and extension personnel. Valerio is actively involved in science outreach through participation in several science festivals and teaching activities with high, middle, and primary schools. He holds a joint ownership of intellectual property (US Patent) to a non-pesticidal attract and kill composition for control of the spotted-wing drosophila, Drosophila suzukii.