After receiving her Law degree in 1981 at the University of Bologna, she began her academic career as a Lecturer in the same University. She continued at the newly-established Faculty of Law of the University of Trento, where she was an Assistant Professor and, since 2000, a Full Professor of Administrative Law.
At the University of Trento she has taught for more than 30 years different subjects in the field of public law, including administrative law, administrative justice, comparative administrative law, public law, EU law and global administrative law, town planning law, gender studies. She served as Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Law and as Director of the joint post-graduate School of Law of the Universities of Trento and Verona.
She spent study periods abroad, in particular at the Freie Universität Berlin and the Ludwig- Maximilians Universität München.
In February 2013 she was elected Rector of the University of Trento. She served as Rector until October 2014, when she was appointed as Constitutional judge. During her time as Rector she was elected to the Board of the Conference of the Italian University Rectors (CRUI). For her commitment to further strengthen the relations among the Universities of the alpine Euregio she was appointed Honorary Academic Senator of the Free University of Bolzano (2014) and Ehrensenatorin of the Leopold Franzens University of Innsbruck (2015).
She served as President of IISA (Italian Institute of Administrative Sciences) Italian Section of the Institut International des Sciences Administratives (2011-2015) and as member of the Board of the Associazione italiana dei professori di diritto amministrativo (AIPDA) and of the Associazione Italiana di Diritto Urbanistico (AIDU). At present she is member of these and other associations, among which SIPE (Societas Iuris Publici Europaei), EGPL (European Group of Public Law) and ELI (European Law Institute).
She is a member of the Kuratorium of the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law in Heidelberg and of the Board of the Italian Chapter of ICON•S (The International Society of Public Law).
She sits in the scientific and editorial board of a number of academic law journals; she was one of the founders of the first Italian law journal in English, IJPL - Italian Journal of Public Law. Her essay Valutazione amministrativa e discrezionalità tecnica, Padova, Cedam, 1995 was selected among the books of the year, Libri dell’anno nella scienza giuridica, Istituto Luigi Sturzo. Among her most recent publications: Spaltungen in der EU-Gerichtsbarkeit und wie sie überwunden werden können, in J. A. Kämmerer, M. Kotzur e J. Ziller (ed.), Integration und Desintegration in Europa / Integration and Desintegration in Europe / Intégration et Désintégration en Europe, Nomos - Stämpfli Verlag, Baden Baden - Bern, 2019, p. 109 ss; Sviluppi della giurisprudenza costituzionale italiana, in L. De Lucia e F. Wollenschläger (ed.), Sfide e innovazioni nel diritto pubblico / Herausforderungen und Innovationen im Öffentlichen Recht, Giappichelli-Nomos, Torino-Baden Baden, 2019, p. 147 ss.