"The real, great Academies are where new concepts are invented;
where people try to understand things that no one has been able to understand before;
where problems are solved that no one had thought of"
(Professor A. Zichichi)
The Gruppo Accademico Ufologico Scandicci (“academic ufology group of Scandicci”), founded on June 21, 1994 with the original name of “Gruppo Amatori Ufologia Scandicci”, is an apolitical non-profit cultural association based in Scandicci (Florence, Italy) whose main purpose is to conduct research and divulgation on the phenomenology of the unidentified flying objects.
Born from the union of a few but enthusiastic Florentine young men and formed in accordance with the purest principles of association, over the years the group has expanded and reached undoubtedly important goals in a frontier discipline that is beginning to draw considerable public interest, even from those institutions that for decades have instead maintained an attitude of irremovable refusal.
In the field of divulgation, the work of the association in recent years has proved to be full of initiatives at both national and international level. In the course of our activity, we have held numerous cultural evenings and themed conferences at our headquarters or at other Tuscan cultural associations’. Since 1996, when were first invited to participate in the prestigious World UFO Symposium of San Marino, we have been guests of the most renowned Italian and international conferences in the fields of ufology and the search for life in the universe.
The GAUS, being fully aware of the thorniness of the topic since its foundation, has always preferred approaches and research methodologies that remain equidistant both from prejudicial skepticism – often resulting from a lack of knowledge on the subject-matter – and easy enthusiasm, sensationalism and, in a paraphrase of the great scientist Carl Sagan, from extraordinary claims without any extraordinary evidence. Our philosophy is based on a continuous debate, a continuous questioning of our scientific knowledge, historical facts and our own work as a group: an incessant evolution of our thinking and know-how that takes place mainly through the dialogue with eminent personalities of the academic world. For this reason and, at the same time, in order to make the aims and methodologies of the group clearer, in March 1996 the association changed its name to the current “Academic Ufology Group of Scandicci”.
It is not by chance that the event that distinguishes us more than any other and that has given us great notoriety across our country and Europe is the International UFO Congress of Florence, which celebrates its XXI edition this year. Thanks also to the patronage of the Region of Tuscany, for twenty years now we have been addressing the most enigmatic and captivating aspects of the subject, always receiving great appreciation from both the public and the media. We are proud to have had first level guests, both Italian and international, from the most varied cultural and professional backgrounds. Since year 2000, theoretical physicists, former military and government officials, anthropologists, psychiatrists, theologians, philosophers, but also ordinary citizens who have witnessed the extraordinary, honor us every year with their participation. Debate, discussion and sharing cutting-edge knowledge and info with the public are our essential contributions to a discipline that is still controversial, but is also bound to become in the future an officially recognized branch of academic science.
In the field of divulgation, the activities of the association do not stop at cultural events but also extend to the realization of films (mainly about our conferences), in-depth articles published by the main magazines in the field of ufology, essays and other editorial works. To date, the GAUS is the author of the volumes Phoenix's Light, an investigation of the staggering mass sighting case in Phoenix, Arizona, occurred in 1997, and Ma quale Geipan (literally “what GEIPAN?”, 2014, Youcanprint), an investigation into the most famous official research center on the UFO phenomenon in the world, edited by our President Pietro Marchetti.
Besides divulgation, the association has been constantly engaged in the monitoring of the phenomenon through on-site investigations and research resulting mainly from reports by private citizens. In recent years, our attention has been focused not only on the cases reported in Tuscany, but also on the most well-known cases occurring in Valmalenco, a valley located about 100 miles north of Milan and now considered the main UFO hotspot in our country. Valmalenco has recently become a noteworthy theater of unconventional and unexplained aerial phenomena which are being reported with a disconcerting frequency by a considerable number of residents.
To ensure the genuineness of our research work, we have also turned to external consultants and professionals to verify the authenticity of the digital images we receive almost every day from our witnesses. To be more specific, recently we have started subjecting our most interesting digital photographic images to official forensic investigation, in the face of large expenditures: regardless of the results – some of which are astonishing indeed – this modus operandi cannot but represent GAUS in its most intimate essence, that is, a group that acts in full respect of the principles of objectivity and seriousness, exclusively for the sake of knowledge and far from any economic gain.
The GAUS group actively collaborates with independent researchers and other national and international cultural associations.
Below is a summary of the latest version of the Statute defined for the association. To view or obtain a copy of the full version, please contact our group by e-mail:
Articles 1 and 2: They sanction the birth of an association called GAUS (Academic Ufology Group of Scandicci), whose purpose is to carry out scientific research and divulgation activities related to the UFO phenomenon. The group's approach to the study of this phenomenon is characterized by open-mindedness towards different interpretations and the predilection of those that prove to be based on concrete elements to overcome counterproductive fantasies. The association is apolitical and non-profit.
Articles 3 to 8: To join the association, the applicant must be over 16 and submit a written application to the Board of Directors. For underage applicants, a parent's signature is required to release the Association from any responsibility. It is possible to join GAUS exclusively as ORDINARY MEMBER with the commitment to actively engage in our research activities. Members are required to pay a fixed membership fee. Members can be expelled if they cause damage or offence to the association with words, deeds or any other means.
Articles 9 to 15: The members gather in ordinary assemblies (every three months) or extraordinary assemblies; annually, they approve the association budget and elect the Board.
Articles 16 to 20: The chairman is the official representative of the GAUS; at the moment of his/her candidacy, the candidate has to nominate his deputy chairman and secretary who will support him in case he is elected. The Assembly also elects an administrator and three directors who will join, together with the chairman, the Board of Directors.
Articles 20 to 24: The task of the chairmanship is to decide the topics to be addressed during the meetings. The Secretary draws up the minutes of all the meetings, while the administrator manages the funds of the association and draws up the budgets that will then be presented to the Assembly. The Board of Directors manage, direct, coordinate and supervise the activities of the group. This body can assign specific assignments to external consultants and professionals.
Articles 25 to 26: The dissolution of the GAUS must be decided unanimously by its members; the modification of the statute requires at least three-fourths of the members.