An itinerant BrainForum
Dedicated to Rita Levi-Montalcini

October 2021 - may 2022

8 Cities/ 8 Topics/ 50 Women Scientists

In collaboration with






A project by

International Relations

In collaboration with

The Concept

Emotions have long been interpreted as storms capable of overwhelming human souls, especially women’s, and emotionality has been contrasted with the more reliable and masculine rationality. Instead, today we are discovering that it is precisely that turmoil that often constitutes the spark that triggers deep cognitive processes. And we are discovering the fundamental role of emotions, and therefore of  women’s emotional expertise in inclusion, empathy, preservation, sustainability, for solving the challenges of the Third Millennium, from migration to global heating to exploitation of resources and the difficult ethical decisions arising form the new technologies.

The EMOTIONS itinerant BrainForum has invited brilliant scientists from the most prestigious international universities and institutions to analyse the emotions considering all their aspects.

Starting with the history of emotions, we shall discuss how they are born and develop in the brain, their role in artistic manifestations, how they have influenced the development of the most recent studies in virtual reality, robotics and embodiment, the role of gender in the manifestation of emotions, and the pathologies of emotions from excess to absence, and to deception.

EMOTIONS is dedicated to Rita Levi-Montalcini, and aims to promote women in science, following the path outlined by the italian nobel Prize Laureate.

EMOTIONS was conceived by Viviana Kasam, President of BraincircleItalia, in partnership with Clara Caverzasio, co-president of BraincircleLugano, Hermona Soreq, of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Daniela Perani of the Università Vita-Salute San Raffaele, Milan. It is promoted by BrainCircleItalia, European Brain Research Institute – Rita Levi-Montalcini, ELSC, The Center for Brain Sciences of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, The Sagol Network and Women’s BrainProject on the tenth anniversary of the creation of the BraincircleItalia Association, which was founded with the support of Rita Levi-Montalcini, who was Honorary President, and of Pietro Calissano.

The project involves a series of BrainForums between October 2021 and May 2022, which will take place in various cities: Jerusalem, Genoa, Rome, Lugano, Milan, Geneva, London, Lisbon. Each BrainForum will host from two to seven speakers and will be organised in collaboration with prestigious local universities and research institutes. 

The BrainForums will be broadcast in live streaming on YouTube and subsequently available on this site.

Understanding emotions


October 24, 2021

Foto: Koadla,

Brain maps of emotions


October 31, 2021

Maurizio Beatrici, Wikimedia Commons

Beauty and the brain


November 19, 2021

Foto: Jebulon, Wikimedia Commons

Does gender affect emotions?


December 3, 2021

Foto: Daniele Zela, Wikimedia Commons

Emotions in the artificial worlds


January 25, 2022

Foto: Mauro Gambini,

Emotions, cognition and behavior


February 11, 2022

Foto: Elbesy, Wikimedia Commons

Love and its emotional implications


May 15, 2022

Foto: Ilya Grigorik, Wikimedia Commons

Evolving emotions: from flies to humans and beyond


May 21, 2022

Foto: Thanasis Geo,