CISM, International Centre for Mechanical Sciences, is a non-profit organization, founded in 1968 to favour the exchange and application of the most advanced knowledge in the mechanical sciences, in interdisciplinary fields like robotics, biomechanics, environmental engineering and in other fields (mathematics, information and system theory, operations research, computer science, artificial intelligence).
Located in the Palazzo del Torso in the center of Udine, the Centre’s facilities include two lecture halls, seating 80 and 50 persons respectively, several smaller lecture and meeting rooms, the Centre’s library, secretariat, administrative and technical offices. CISM is international in both scope and structure: the Scientific Council, rectors, lecturers are selected from among the acknowledged authorities in their respective fields the world over.
The principal activity of the Centre is the organization of courses, seminars, workshops, symposia, and conferences to present the state of the art of these sciences to researchers. It also provides advanced training for engineers operating in industry. The typical course or seminar is brief, but intense: a week of 35/40 lectures, more or less the equivalent of a university course of one semester. Participants pay a registration fee, but young researchers who cannot be supported by their own institutions may apply for scholarships. The CISM Guest House, adjacent to the Centre, provides accommodations for lecturers and a limited number of participants.
The Centre has produced over 600 texts, the collected lectures of CISM courses, together with the proceedings of symposia hosted by CISM, and selected monographs, published by Springer-Verlag in the joint CISM-Springer series. The journal Mechanics Research Communications was founded by CISM in collaboration with Pergamon Press, Oxford in 1973.
CISM is funded by the Friuli Venezia Giulia Region, the Province of Udine and the city of Udine, and local public and private institutions, together with other member institutions in Europe and abroad. CISM also benefited from financial support from National Research Council of Italy (CNR) and UNESCO.
Since the foundation of the University of Udine in 1978 a close relationship has formally developed between the two institutions, especially with regard to their cooperation in scientific and educational matters. In 2015 an agreement has been signed with the aim of promoting joint strategic activities toward a larger internationalization of the University.
In 2006 CISM-Lab has been established as a CISM’s spin-off with the aim of providing solutions to problems arising both in local administrations and in technologically advanced industries.