Born in Venice (Italy) in 1944. Degree in Architecture at the Istituto Universitario di Architettura of Venice in 1969 with honours, under the supervision of prof. Giancarlo De Carlo.
Full Professor of Urban Planning and Deputy Director of the Department of Architecture of the Università degli Studi of Ferrara, where he teaches since the institution in 1992 until his retirement in 2014. He was formerly assistant and associate professor at the Istituto Universitario di Architettura of Venice since 1973. He’s currently “guest lecturer” in “Urban Conservation” at the Raymond Lemaire International Conservation Centre of the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium) and adjunct professor in “Urban planning” at the Faculty of Economics of the University of Bologna. He visited several universities abroad (Dublin, Southbank Polytechnic of London, Leuven, Paris-Belleville, Aix-en-Provence, Clermond Ferrand, Bordeaux, New Dehli, University of California - Berkeley, Stockholm and Goteborg, Malta, Rabat, Bir Zeit, Tirana, Sarajevo, Mostar, Istanbul, Tblisi). As an expert-consultant of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs he was appointed to the Scientific Committee of the Post-Graduate schools of Planning in Algiers and Tunis.
He also practices, in Italy and abroad, as a consultant to local governments, public administrations and international organisations (UNESCO, World Bank, UNDP, Italian, German and French cooperation agencies), in the fields and urban planning, design and conservation.
As a teacher, scholar and consultant, his interests are focussed on the urban rehabilitation and regeneration, with regard to the issues of cultural heritage and landscape conservation, the design of the open public spaces, and the reorganisation of the mobility and infrastructural systems. The following studies, projects and plans are relevant to this regard:
- Researches on historic landscape and settlement pattern of the lagoon of Venice carried out for the Municipality and the District of Venice and the European Community (1973 – 1981);
- Studies for the establishment of the district plans of Alta Valsugana and Primiero in the Trento Province (1974 – 1980), and the local plans of Comacchio (Ferrara, 1995-97), Crevalcore (Bologna 1993 - 1998) and Iglesias (Cagliari 1995 - 1998), with special regards to the conservation of historic cities and settlements;
- Development plans and execution projects for housing and multi-functional urban development schemes in sensitive areas in Siena (1975-1978) and Venezia-Mazzorbo (1979 – 1980), both in collaboration with Giancarlo De Carlo; Ravenna (1998 – 2005); Mantova (1999); Sarajevo (Bosnia, 1999-2000); Rimini (2005 – 2006); Ferrara (since 2010, ongoing);
- Urban design projects carried out in the framework of the Transportation Plans and infrastructure programmes for the cities of Vicenza (1984), Venice (1987), and the medium-size cities of Emilia-Romagna (Ravenna, Rimini, Imola, Reggio Emilia, 2004).
- Planning studies and urban design projects for the implementation of large scale landscape conservation and rehabilitation programmes, concerning the River Panaro (Province of Modena 1999-2000), the integration of a waterway in the urban area of Ferrara (municipality of Ferrara 2005 – 2008), the Archaeological Park of the Daming Palace in Xian (China 2008, international competition 2nd award), the Urban Design Guidelines for the Buffer Zones of Al Ain’s WH cultural sites (Abu Dhabi TCA since 2015);
- Urban projects and intervention programmes for the conservation, upgrading and regeneration of several historic cities, in the framework of international cooperation programmes: the Casbah of Algiers (civil servant 1970-72), the medina of Salé and Fés (Morocco, Italian cooperation, 1986 - 1988), the historic settlement pattern of Malta (EU, 1990), the central areas of Baalbeck and Tyre (Lebanon, World Bank, 2002-2007), Madaba (Jordan, World Bank 2002-2003), Meknes (Morocco, World Bank 2003), Chongqing (China, World Bank 2004), Al Ain (UAE, 2004 – 2005, UNESCO), Manama and Muharraq (Bahrein, UNDP 2005 – 2006), Djibouti city center (World Bank, 2005-2007), Old City of Zabid WH in Danger (Yemen, German cooperation and Yemeni Government 2008-2010); Ajloun and Jerash (Jordan, World Bank 2009-2010), heritage precincts of Shaoxing (China, World Bank 2009); urban and architectural heritage of Casablanca (Morocco, AUC 2015).
- Researches on the “shared heritage” of the 19th and 20th centuries in the Mediterranean countries, in the framework of the EU programmes Euromed II (2002-2006) and Euromed IV (2009-2012);
- Studies for the establishment of conservation and rehabilitation plans for several World Heritage cities, on behalf of UNESCO – World Heritage Centre: heritage inventory and safeguarding measures for Sana’a (Yemen, 2003 – 2006), Action Plan for the Old City of Jerusalem (2006-2007), State of Conservation of the Old City of Damascus (2008), Urban Regeneration Project for Historic Cairo (2010-2014) as expert and scientific coordinator. He participated also in the preparation of the ToR for the planning documents Mtskheta (Georgia).
He has been member of several international scientific committees, in particular of the French Agence Nationale de la Recherche (ANR) for the evaluation of research programs, and UNESCO-WHC for the preparation and the implementation of the “recommendation” on Historic Urban Landscapes approved in October 2011. He’s currently member of the Steering Committee of the UNESCO program for the safeguarding of the “Heritage of the architectural and urban modernity in the Arab World” (since 2013). In 2016 he has been appointed to the Think Tank of the Agha Khan Trust for Culture (2016).
Amongst his publications, the following books deal with urban conservation and regeneration issues: “Planning and management of Urban and Landscape Heritage” (with L. Verdelli), Bologna 2012, “The inventory of the historic city of Sana’a. A tool for urban conservation”, Paris 2008 “Laboratoire GIS, Euromed Heritage II Patrimoines Partagés”, Tours-Ferrara 2006; “Historic city and sustainable development in today’s Maghreb”, Rabat, 2004; “Railway stations renewal and urban regeneration issues”, Bologna 2004; “Safety in public spaces: a major issue in urban regeneration” Firenze 2003; "From emergency to reconstruction. An urban project in Bosnia Erzegovina, Torino 2000; “The Medina of Salé. Studies and proposals for urban regeneration”, Milano 1993; “The Medina of Fés. Studies on the rehabilitation of the Boukhrareb area”, Milano 1992; several sections of the “Guida d’Italia. Venezia” of the Touring Club Italiano, Milano (1985-2007). He also published several essays and articles on urban planning and design and heritage conservation in several books and magazines (“Urbanistica”, “Rassegna”, “Casabella”, “Spazio e Società”, “Parametro”, “Paesaggio Urbano”, “Nexus”, TRIA, Contesti and others).