Top 10 best universities in Italy

best universities in Italy

Chances always are that you go abroad to get through the academic program of any of the best universities in Italy. Europe has plenty of exchange and funding programs (e. g., Erasmus) that support the mobilization of EU students, and is always willing to open its doors to the population from overseas (after all, there’s no better business than research). It stands to reason that one of the most sought-after destinations for a European or international student is Italy. 

Particularly, the most preferred careers in Italy tend to be Engineering, Medicine, and Fashion; some will come for a Master of Business Administration (MBA), as Italy is home to an important number of leading companies in any industry, you just name it: from DeLonghi’s coffee machines and home appliances to Dolce&Gabbana’s pret-a-porter. This is no brainer as the development of the medical sciences runs hand in hand with humanities (since the Renaissance) and, you may see, engineering has become very important in the Italian academic landscape and Italian engineers have achieved many of a feat. 

The following are the top universities in Italy according to the field of studies per the Agenzia nazionale di valutazione del Sistema universitario e della ricerca (ANVUR). This table summarizes the best universities in Italy on the basis of the students who would undertake the Erasmus program, so we’d be talking about universities in Italy for International students.



State university. The largest technical university in the country, with over 40,000 enrolled students. Founded in 1863, it may be not be as impressively old as other Italian institutions but it is certainly the oldest university in Milan.

In 2022, it ranked 13th in the QS World University Rankings for the “Engineering & Technology” subject. Giulio Natta, chemist who won a Nobel Prize, as well as architects Renzo Piano, Aldo Rossi and Patricia Urquiola, are notable alumni.

Ferruccio Resta has been its rector since 2017 (his term is scheduled to end in 2022).

Honorable mentions: Polytechnic University of Turin, University of Bologna


State University. Founded in 1998, which makes it a very recent institution. However, Times Higher Education ranked it among the best 100 under 50 year-old universities, placing 21st in the world ranking and first in Italy.

It has many departments and you need to add the schools of Economic and Statistical Sciences and the School of Sciences.

One of the top universities in Italy, Milano-Bicocca is comprised by two campuses: Milano e Sesto on one hand, and Monza-Lissone-Vedano al Lambro on the other. Monza’s site is adjacent to San Gerardo Hospital.

best universities in Italy

To identify the activities being run at the university, its buildings are labeled with the letter U followed by a number. For example, at Milano e Sesto the identification is as follows:

  • U1 – Scienze dell’Ambiente e del Territorio
  • U2 – Fisica, Biblioteca Scientifica
  • U3 – Biotecnologie e Bioscienze
  • U4 – Scienze Geologiche e Geotecnologie
  • U5 – Scienza dei Materiali, Matematica e applicazioni, Sistemi informativi
  • U6 – Rettorato, Economia, Giurisprudenza, Psicologia, Scienze della Formazione, mensa, bar, Biblioteca
  • U7 – Economia, Scienze Statistiche, Sociologia, mensa, bar
  • U9 – Psicologia, Settore Didattico, Laboratori Scientifici Pesanti, Associazione cultura, sport e tempo libero, Centro di Produzione Multimediale, etc.

At Monza, a similar way to identify the facilities has been adopted.

Currently, the Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca’s rector is Giovanna Innantuoni (from 2019)

Honorable mentions: Università degli Studi di Genova, Università degli Studi di Palermo.


The private institute was founded in 1935 by Giulio Marangoni, who was a very renowned tailor back in that time. As many of us know, Milano (Milan) is one of the main hubs for the fashion industry, and this is where Istituto Marangoni is primarily placed: it also has branches in Florence, London, Paris, Shangai and Shenzhen, Mumbai, and Miami.

Its alumni include Domenico Dolce, Franco Moschino, Alessandra Facchinetti, Sandra Mansour, and some other big players in the fashion industry. 


Business school is enclosed in the Bocconi University structure. We are speaking of one of the best universities in Italy, the leading School of Management in the country, and among the top European universities. 

It was the first Italian university to be accredited by EQUIS (1998), and holds the ISO 9001:2001 certification.

The SDA Bocconi offers a 3-year-long DBA and 4 MBA programs:

  • Full-Time MBA
  • Global Executive MBA
  • Executive MBA
  • Executive MBA weekend

It also has an extensive number of master’s programs and it strives to promote research. 

Honorable mentions: Università di Pisa, MIB Trieste School of Management.

So, we hope this summary of your options for an academic life in Italy gives you the push you were needing to take the step. Remember that life in Italy is beautiful and you may always figure out how to support yourself. Break a leg!

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