IRES -the Institute for Economic and Social Studies and Researches- is an autonomous non-profit association, established in Marsala, in February 1991, from the combination of different experiences and professional skills.

In the IRES statute, among the main purposes, there’re “the dissemination of culture and the promotion of knowledge, research and information in the field of economic and legal doctrines and issues of major importance for society”.

IRES is involved in the development of the territory with a new mission, that is “the constant search for quality in vocational training”. As a matter of fact, they believe and invest in the role of creative work and consider training and research as essential means for the creation of competences and abilities, and for the transmission of meanings related to the values of creating employment, above all for the younger generations.

The Association firmly believes that an effective and efficient vocational training system is a competitive advantage in the labour market. Indeed, it allows the modernization and qualification of the regional socio-economic growth process. For this reason, IRES  can be considered a strategic partner both for companies and firms which find in IRES a valuable medium to enhance its competitiveness in the markets, and for people who use vocational training to acquire the necessary qualification to strengthen their  position in the labour market. In this way, the Association promotes the development of the territory in which it operates, together with other economic partners.

Important financial backings, such as Structural Funds, allows the contributions to the elimination of economic and social imbalances among the regions of the  European Union, promoting the strengthening of an economic and social cohesion and reducing the gap of development of different regions.

In the choice of its activities, IRES has always kept in the foreground the real needs of the labour market-identified after careful analyses of the territory- availing itself of the collaboration and consulting of well-qualified professional subjects (scholars, researchers, University lecturers, executives of the Civil Service, freelancers and businessmen). To this end, we want to highlight that many initiatives have been carried out in partnership with important and skilful national and foreign partners, who constitute the net of external relations. This network of actors has contributed to projects conceived and conducted by  the Association abroad, in Brazil and Spain.

Thanks to its experience in the field of training and research and thanks  to the cooperation of its partners, IRES offers to schools and businesses its experience and professionalism in the planning, implementation, evaluation and monitoring of training courses, in coding professional profiles, in  searching regional/ EU funding, in managing the whole administrative and balance activities, concerning projects co-funded by the European Social Fund.



Vocational training is IRES main sector of intervention, in which the Association involves many areas and addresses its actions to different types of users: young people, women, workers, unemployed and  disadvantaged persons.

The following are the main sectors, objects of the training activities:

-          ICT (Information and Communication Technologies);

-          Cultural Heritage;

-          Equal Opportunities;

-          Tourism;

-          Socio- Welfare services;

-          Immigration and emigration;

-          PMI;

-          Agriculture;

-          Environment;

-          Training for trainers;.

Among IRES activities, there’s also the creation of paths for Continuous and Permanent Training for persons who want to improve their professional skills and formation through structural interventions, in various fields for the various needs,  especially concerning the areas of computer science and language skills.

It offers training aiming at professionalization to each kind of users, from the high training –carrying out Masters in collaboration with Universities- to the training for people with low rate of schooling, who are at risk of social exclusion and discrimination; from the training to upgrade skills of staff in accordance with companies and enterprises, to the retraining of professionals who work in areas in constant evolution and with high technological development, up to the training for trainers.

Moreover, IRES promotes Equal Opportunities and women participation in the labor market, with specific initiatives targeted at women, focused on their employment, that is usually difficult in Sicily.

Among the sectors IRES attends, the social area is one of the most important: through the fulfillment of the Citizenship Office project of the Social Health District D8 of Caltanissetta, pertaining to funds of the  Law 328 and through activities addressed to foreign national immigrants. They need a language- cultural training as an essential mean not only  for the acquisition of professional skills, but also for their integration in society.

Among the whole activities, there’s the research on some of the training topics and the publishing and spreading of  the results, considered as real guidance and deepening studying instruments in various field.

The Institute activity, about the economic development and growth in Sicily and in the Public Administration, is also performed during seminars, debates, meetings and conventions, in collaboration with the European Union, the Sicilian Region, The State, the Local Institutions and other private institutions.



According to its aims, IRES has increased its activity in recent years, extending the range of intervention on the territory and becoming a benchmark for the region. So, at the present moment the Association  has many seats homogeneously displaced in the region: Alcamo, Catania, Caltanissetta, Marsala, Messina, Monreale, Palermo, Salemi, Termini Imerese and Trapani.

In confirmation of the expertise and knowledge acquired in vocational training and education -with D.D.G. n.315 of 14/03/2007 by the Region Works Department- IRES is duly accredited to the Sicilian Region as operative Headquarters, authorized to submit projects for training and/or careers guidance.

As regard to the emigration/immigration sector, IRES is duly accredited to the Presidency of the Council of Ministers, Department of Social Affairs, registered in the 1st section of the Register of Associations and Institutions which carry out Activities in favor of immigrants.

The Association has been also authorized to submit projects for Civilian Duties since 2008.

In order to improve and regulate the management of its activities, IRES has adopted a quality system, achieving the Quality Certification N. cert- 16309-205-aq-cia-sincert, issued in 17/08/2005 by DET NORSKE VERITAS QUALITY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM CERTIFICATE.

IRES avails itself  of a well-qualified staff, specialized in different fields: planning, valuation, management, administration, secretary, technical assistance, personnel management and selection, didactics, education and training. They are joined by teachers and consultants who have a recurring periodical relationship with IRES, based on the various requirements of the under way projects.   The Association also benefits from specialized collaboration and consultancy by University lecturers and Public Administrative officials.


In conceiving its strategies and improvement process, IRES gives priority to the quality culture and to the ”customer satisfaction”, both to whom the services are addressed and to the purchasers. This attitude is converted into the Quality Policy, which uses a Quality System and aims to the following objects:

      - improving quality in the training processes;

      -  planning and providing innovative training activities;

      - always updating the educational facilities and methodology;

      - improving the structure flexibility in connection with the requests from outside;

      - strengthening the relationship with the school system and the world of work;

- using well-documented and updated procedures, able to guarantee the quality requirements of its services.

Tasks concerning the managing System for Quality:

-          establishing  and formalizing a managing System for Quality;

-          ensuring  a continuous check of the functioning and efficiency of the Quality System;

-          creating its own  Managing System for Quality in conformity with the law UNI EN ISO 9001:2000, getting the Certification by an Organism accredited by  SINCERT;

achieving accreditation to the Public Administration to propose and carry out guidance and training interventions financed with public assets.