Carla Cacciari obtained her Degree in Physics at the University of Bologna. Her main scientific interests include stellar astrophysics, Population II objects (e.g. globular clusters, Cepheid/RR Lyrae variables), and structure and stellar populations of the Milky Way and Local Group galaxies. She spent some time at the MSSSO (Australia) and at the RGO (UK) studying the RR Lyrae variables and the phenomenon of mass loss from red giant stars in a few globular clusters. For several years she worked as an ESA fellow at the IUE project in VILSPA (Madrid), and as an ESA Resident Astronomer at the Hubble STScI in Baltimore. In those positions, she worked in the groups providing support and assistance to the observers, as well as continuing her own scientific research activity. She is presently involved with the Gaia project in the group responsible for providing the absolute calibration of the Gaia spectro-photometric system.