Marcomini Antonio

Position Professor
Phone number DAIS Office: 041 234 8548 / DAIS lab: 041 234 8653 / INCA Office: 041 234 8690
Office Dipartimento di Scienze Ambientali, Informatica e Statistica (Department director)
Head office: Santa Marta



Born in Rome (1956), Antonio Marcomini is professor of Environmental Chemistry at the University Ca’ Foscari of Venice. Graduated at the University of Padua, he was post-doctoral fellow at the University of Toronto, Lash Miller Chemical Institute, Canada (1982-83), and then research associate at the Polytechnic of Zurich, ETH-EAWAG, Switzerland (1985-86).
Coordinator/partner of several international and national research projects, he is author/coauthor of 226 papers published in international peer reviewed journals, editor and coauthor of two books. According to the ISI Web Of Science, the h-index over the 1986-2014 period is 40.

Consultant of national (e.g. Ministry of the Environment, Venice Water Authority) and international (e.g. European Science Foundation, European Environmental Agency) advisory/expert committees on chemical environmental quality, environmental risk assessment, definition and implementation of environmental quality standards, master plan of contaminated megasites.

More than 25 years of experience in environmental chemistry, especially pollution chemistry (determination and monitoring of priority and emerging pollutants in waters/wastewaters, soil, air and biota), environmental impact assessment and management (development and implementation of environmental quality standards for chemicals; hazard and risk assessment of chemicals); transport and fate of chemicals under current and future, climate affected, conditions. In some more detail: Antonio Marcomini started his research activity as inorganic-metallorganic chemist and then moved soon to environmental chemistry in the context of Environmental Sciences. His research activity focused on the analysis (i.e. structural identification and quantification) and environmental behaviour (i.e. occurrence, transformation, ultimate fate) of chemicals and particles (especially engineered nanoparticles, ENP) in environmental and biological media, and on qualitative and quantitative estimation of environmental risks and impacts resulting from the environmental occurrence of chemical and non-chemical stressors.

Scientific achievements were obtained by developing original methods, novel methodologies and new applications. Both experimental and modelling approaches were used to explain and predict the environmental behaviour of key chemical stressors (e.g. endocrine disrupting compounds, EDC, aromatic surfactants, persistent organic pollutants, i.e. (PCBs, PAHs, Dioxins) under past (from dated samples), actual (from contemporary samples), and future (from thermodynamic models) conditions. The developed knowledge allowed to support (eco)toxicologists to understand the mode of action of intriguing substances (e.g. EDC,ENP) on living organisms, and to link environmental occurrence of pollutants with human and non-human health endpoints.

The overall obtained results, together with literature results, were used to develop environmental risk assessment of chemical pollutants and engineered nanoparticles. Both human health and ecological risk assessment were addressed, by applying conventional (deterministic) and non-conventional (probabilistic) methods for the risk estimation at different spatial scales (local to regional). Prioritization and ranking of chemical and non-chemical stressors according to hazard potential, and sources-pathways-targets distribution, were attained by regionalizing the environmental risk. Methodological innovation was introduced by using methods (e.g. weight of evidence) derived from multicriteria decision analysis (MCDA) to integrate different classes of data (chemical, biological, toxicological, hydromorphological data) to assess environmental quality of natural resources (e.g. natural waters, especially coastal waters). MCDA derived methods (i.e. fuzzy analysis) were also used to develop the environmental risk assessment of engineered nanoparticles by addressing uncertainty resulting from the tremendous knowledge gap between known exposure-effects data and increasing number of nanomaterials. Special attention was addressed to investigating the nutrients cycling and the eutrophication (i.e. primary and secondary productions) in the lagoon of Venice, and the effects of algal biomass growth and decay on the cycling of nitrogen and phosphorous compounds, and on the environmental quality resulting from chemical pollutants.

The overall developed methodologies and procedures used for environmental risk assessment were linked to the decision making triggered by regulations on natural waters and contaminated soils (e.g. water framework directive) and management strategies (e.g. rehabilitation of degraded land). Four risk-based Decision Support Systems (DSS) weredeveloped for assessing and managing human and ecological risks resulting from contaminated sites, river basin pollution, and climate change impacts.
On the side of international cooperation, since the year 2004, Antonio Marcomini and its group developed a collaboration with the Chinese Academy of Environmental Sciences (CRAES). CRAES belongs to the Chinese Ministry of the Environmental Protection (MEP) and is committed by the Chinese government to do environmental research, to support the Chinese government in formulating and implementing environmental legislation and regulations, and to support peripheral governments (the counties) and environmental protection agencies in the environmental assessment and management.

Teaching activities:

Courses for undergraduated and graduated students in Chemistry: Pollution Chemistry, Environmental Impacts of Industrial Productions, Lab. of Environmental Chemistry.

Courses for undergraduated and graduated students in Environmental Sciences: Procedures of Environmental Impact Assessment, Assessment and Management of Environmental Impacts and Risks.

Courses for Ph.D. students in Science and Management of Climate Change: Climate Change and Environmental Contamination.

Research activities:

Coordinator, WP leader and Principal Investigator of EU-international and national projects, leader/coordinator of research groups.

Main research projects over the last 6 years:

NanoFASE: Nanomaterial FAte and Speciation in the Environment, (2015-2019, contract number 646002) funded by the European Horizon2020. Website:

NanoRESTART: NANOmaterials for the REStoration of works of ART, (2015-2019, contract number 646063) funded by the European Horizon2020.  Website:

NanoERA: Nanomaterials Ecological Risk Assessment: A study of the long-term effects and risks of nanoscale Iron Oxide used in plastic composites in the aquatic environment, (2015-2017, contract number 660960) funded by the European Horizon2020 MSCA. Website:

NEXUS: Network-based Expert-Stakeholder Framework for Sustainable Remediation, (2014-2015 extended to 08/02/2016 contract number 627593), funded by the European FP7 MSCA. Website:

SUN Sustainable Nanotechnology, (2013 – 2017, contract number 604305) funded by the European 7th FP and coordinated by Ca’ Foscari University. Website:

4FUN, Demonstration and exploitation of most promising prototypes and tool derived from European resarch actitivities, (2012-2015, contract number 308440) funded by the European 7th FP. Website:

ECONANOSORB, Ecological application of nanosorbents on the base of natural and synthetic ionites and carbons, (2012-2016, contract number 295260) funded by the European 7th FP. Website:

ITS-NANO Intelligent Testing Strategies for nanomaterials impact and exposure – towards regulation and clustering of materials (2012-2013, contract number 290589). Website:

NANOFORART: NANO-materials FOR the conservation and preservation of movable and immovable ARTworks. (2011-2014, contract number 282816). Website:

TIMBRE: Tailored Improvement of Brownfield Regeneration in Europe (2011-2014, contract number 265364), funded by the European 7th FP. Website:

CLIMRUN: Climate Local Information in the Mediterranean region (2011-2014, contract number 265192) Responding to User Needs, funded by the European 7th FP. Website:

AMORE: Multi-Criteria Analysis for the Development of a Decision Support Tool for the Environmental Risks Prevention. (2009-2012) Funded by the French National Research Academy. Website:

KULTURISK: Knowledge-based approach to develop a cULTUre of Risk prevention (2011-2013, contract number 265280), funded by the European 7th FP. Website:

EPSEI: Evaluating Policies for Sustainable Energy Investments (2011-2015, contract number 269327). Funded by the European 7th FP PEOPLE, Marie Curie IRSES. Website:

GLOCOM: Global Partners in Contaminated Land Management (2011-2015, contract number 269233), funded by the European 7th FP PEOPLE, Marie Curie IRSES. Website:

NanoHouse – Life Cycle of nanoparticle-based house coating (2010-2013, contract number 247810) Funded by the European 7th FP. Website:

NAMETECH – Development of intensified water treatment concepts by integrating NAno- and MEmbrane TECHnologies (2009-2012, contract number 226791). Website:

E-URAL: European Union and RussiA Link for S&T co-operation in the area of the environment (2009-2011, contract number 226517), funded by the European 7th FP. Website:

PEGASO: People for Ecosystem Based Governance in Assessing Sustainable Development of Ocean and Coast (2010-2014, contract number 244170), funded by the European 7th FP. Website:

CMCC: Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change, funded by Italian Government and including the development of a GIS based Decision Support System supporting coastal zone impact assessment and management at regional scale. Website:

TRUST: Tool for regional scale assessment of groundwater storage improvement in adaptation to climate change (2009-2011), funded by Life plus Program. Website:

SALT: Gestione sostenibile del bacino del fiume Esino per prevenire l’intrusione salina nell’acquifero costiero in considerazione dei cambiamenti climatici (2009-2011), funded by Life plus Program. Website:

NANOTEST project: Alternative testing strategies for the assessment of the toxicological profile of nanoparticles used in medical diagnostics (2008-2012, contract number 201335) funded by the the European 7th FP. Website:

ENPRA: Risk assessment of engineered nanoparticles (2009-2012, contract number 228789) Funded by the European 7th FP. Website:

CANTICO: Climate and local ANthropogenic drivers and impacts for the TunisIan COastal area, funded by the the European 6th FP, ERA-NET scheme. Website:

SYRIADE: Spatial decision support sYstem for Regional rIskAssessment of DEgraded land, funded by the European Commission Joint Research Centre.

2-FUN: Full-chain and Uncertainty Approaches for Assessing Health Risks in Future Environmental Scenarios, funded by the European 6th FP. Website:

PARTICLE RISK: Chemical characterization and human risk assessment of particles arising from New and Emergent NanoTechnologies, funded by EU (Contract No. NEST-2005-012912). Website:

DESYRE: Decision Support System for Requalification of Contaminated Sites, funded by Italian Ministry of University & Scientific Research, and including technologies comparison and socio-economic analysis. Website:

ERA-MANIA: application of Ecological Risk Assessment to develop remedial scenarios and monitoring plan for contaminated megasite in Italy, funded by Italian Ministry of Environment. Web:

MODELKEY: Decision Support System for Assessing and Forecasting the Impact of Environmental Key Pollutants on Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems and Biodiversity, funded by the European 6th FP and involving 25 partners in the European countries. Website: