1990 M.D. in Biological Sciences (University of Parma, Italy) (mark 110/110 cum laude).
1992 Habilitation for the Profession of Biologist (mark 150/150).
1994 PhD in “Animal Biology (Ethology)” (Universities of Firenze, Parma, Pisa).
1996-1998 Post-Doc in Fundamental Biological Sciences.
Since 1999 Researcher in Zoology at the Faculty of Sciences (University of Parma). Teaching at the Faculty of Science of the University of Parma
BEHAVIOURAL ECOLOGY & SOCIOBIOLOGY
Since 2000 Member of the Doctorate School in “Biology of Behaviour” (University of Parma).
Since 1995 Tutor for more than 30 Diploma Theses and 4 PhD Theses.
Since 1990 member of the Italian Section IUSSI (International Union for the Study of Social Insects).
Since 2001 member of the Council of the Italian Section IUSSI (International Union for the Study of Social Insects).
2005-2010 President of the Italian Section IUSSI (International Union for the Study of Social Insects).
Since 1994 member of the Italian Society of Ethology (S.I.E.).
2008-2012 Council member of the Italian Society of Ethology (S.I.E.).
Since 2008 member of Italian Union of Zoology (U.Z.I.)
Since 1989 has presented his scientific contributions at more than 30 National and 20 International Congresses.
Author of more than 100 scientific papers on international and national journals.
The scientific activity of D.A. Grasso concerns mainly Behavioural Ecology and Sociobiology. In particular, the main topics of his research regard several aspects of ant biology (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) studied with a multidisciplinary approach. Behavioural, morpho-functional, chemical and bioacoustical investigations were conducted and were mainly focused on the reproductive behaviour, foraging, raiding activity, alarm and defence, territorial marking, orientation, reproductive behaviour and colony founding in both social parasites (such as slave-making ants) and free-living species. Other topics concern ecological aspects, such as intra- and inter-specific competition in different ant species (mainly Messor harvester ants), as well as the sociogenetics of incipient colonies. Recently started investigations are addressed to the study of the ant fauna as possible bioindicator for measuring environmental quality, especially in areas with a strong impact of human activities, such as the agro-ecosystems. Finally, further recent researches are devoted to investigate social structure and organization of harvester ants of the genus Messor. Moreover, investigation are also focused on the symbiotic relationships involving ants and other organisms such as phytophagous insects (e.g. aphids and mealybugs) and on how ants may affect the action of their natural enemies (such as coccinellid beetles) both in natural conditions and during biological control. Symbiotic relatioships with bacteria and plants are also investigated.