SIXXI

XX CENTURY STRUCTURAL ENGINEERING: THE ITALIAN CONTRIBUTION

ERC Advanced Grant 2011
PI: SERGIO PORETTI

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The SIXXI Research has been funded by an ERC (European Research Council) Advanced Grant 2011 (Project ID: 295550; EU contribution: EUR 987.270).

The general goal of the research is to give a major contribution to the international history of the role of engineering in architecture.
The research project focuses on the works and protagonists of twentieth century structural engineering in Italy.
Beyond the confines of its national focus, the proposal aims to bring out the fundamental role played by Italian structural engineering in the history of modern architecture, to date largely ignored.
The contributions of major figures such as Pier Luigi Nervi, Riccardo Morandi, but also Silvano Zorzi, Sergio Musmeci, Giulio Krall, Gino Covre and others have been overlooked up to now.
The relationship between architecture and engineering have focused largely on developments in other countries: France, Switzerland, England and US.
The research project aims to fill the missing and significant Italian contribution in the international panorama.
The project has various objectives:
- Substantially improve knowledge on this issue by focusing research on individual engineers and their works;
- Introduce/strengthen the History of Civil Engineering in University Engineering and Architecture Departments (to date in Italy this subject has been completely overlooked) as a fundamental area concerning the history of construction;
- Train young researchers in this sector and organize a knowledge network available to experts and administrations;
- Promote the exploitation and protection of these works by the authorities.
This ambitious project aims to identify the major contribution of Italian Engineering to the European and international twentieth century architecture; and to contextualize the outstanding Italian engineering success, particularly during the economic boom, in the international panorama. It passionately delves into the research area that Eugenio Battisti defined as “a new frontier of historiography”.
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