Giacomo Rizzolatti graduated in Medicine in Padua. Subsequently he worked at the Institute of Physiology of the University of Pisa and at the University of Pennsylvania. From 1969 he is at the University of Parma, where, in 1975 he became Professor of Human Physiology. At present he is Professor Emeritus at the University of Parma.
He has been President of the Italian Society of Neurosciences and of the European Brain Behavior Society. He directed the program European Training Program in Brain and Behaviour Research (European Science Foundation, Strasbourg). He is a Member of Accademia dei Lincei, Foreign Member of the Académie Francaise des Sciences, Foreign Member of American Academy of Arts and Sciences, member of the Accademia delle Scienze (Torino) and member of the National Academy of Sciences (USA). He is also a member of the Academia Europaea.
He is famous for his work on cognitive functions of the motor system and for the discovery of the 'mirror mechanism'. He received the Honorary Degrees from University Claude Bernard (Lyon), University St Petersbug, the Katolieke University of Leuven, from University of Sassari, Universidad Nacional de San Martin Buenos Aires and from Universidad de la Republica of Montevideo.
Emeritus Professor, Department of Medicine and Surgery, University of Parma
Cognitive neuroscience, Motor system, Mirror mechanism