Piero Olivo received his degree (1980) and PhD (1987) in Electronic Engineering from the University of Bologna. Assistant Professor (1983) and Associated Professor of Electronic Instrumentation (1991) at the University of Bologna (1991), Full Professor of electronics at the University of Catania (1993). Since 1995 he is with the University of Ferrara.

Among his academic activities, since 2001 up to 2007 he was the coordinator of the teaching activities in the area of electronic engineering and computer sciences and he acted as PhD coordinator in electronic engineering and computer sciences since 2000 up to 2004. He was member of the commission for spin-off activation and he represents the Università di Ferrara within (Italian University Nanoelectronics Team). In 2006/2007 he was elected vice president of the research council of the Università di Ferrara and was member of the Administration board. In 2007/2102 he acted as dean of the Engineering Faculty at the Università di Ferrara. In 2012 he became member of the Administration board of the Università di Ferrara (until 2016). From 2013 to 2017 he has been appointed Director of Quality at the the Università di Ferrara. 

In 1986 and 1989 he was a visiting scientist at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center. In that period he discovered the phenomenon known as SILC, presented the first time at IRPS 1987. Such a phenomenon, provoked by high electric field stresses, is still regarded as the main limitation towards oxide thickness reduction in Flash memories.

His scientific interests were in the area of solid state devices and of VLSI integrated circuits design and test. His activity in the former sector concerned SiO2 physics, quantum effects, leakage currents in thin dielectrics, charge transport and trapping in SiO2, reliability and breakdown of thin oxides, measurement techniques for MOS devices, non volatile memories characterization. As for the latter sector, his interests concerned signature analysis techniques (in particular he co-authored the papers describing analytically the "aliasing" phenomenon), design for testability, fault modeling and simulation, IDDQ testing, self-checking circuits, non volatile memory testing).

In the last twenty years his scientific activity concerns the experimental characterization and the reliability of non-volatile memories (Flash, PCM, Charge Trapping, ReRAM, MRAM), with specific focus on topics to be evaluated at the array level (erratic erase, over-erase, reliability dependence on erase algorithms and parameters). Such an activity has been also made possible by the availability of a dedicated equipment for experimental characterization of non-volatile memories that has been fully developed under prof. Olivo’s supervision. An academic spin-off has been activated for the commercialization of such an equipment.

Recently, the research activity concerned the evaluation of the performance and reliability of Solid State Drives which are strongly linked to those of non-volatile memories that constitute the storage support.


Piero Olivo is author or co-author of more than 100 papers published on the most important international journals and he presented several papers at international conferences.

He coordinated the project for the creation of the Electromagnetic Compatibility Laboratory at the Università of Ferrara.

Piero Olivo coordinated, participated and evaluated several research projects financed by U.E and by the Italian Research Ministry. Within the VII FP of the UE he now participates to Athenis and Gossamer projects. He also participated to several research and development projects for SME financed by the Italian Research Ministry.


Since 2017 he is enrolled in the ANVUR register of the evaluators of the academic system, since 2018 he is a member of the Evaluation Board (Nucleo di Valutazione) of the University of Verona and since 2020 he is a member of the Evaluation Board (Nucleo di Valutazione) of the University of Pavia.