Chiara Circo (1983) is an architect (2009), Ph.D. (2017), and since 2019 lecturer (European funding program PON-AIM) at the Department of Civil Engineering and Architecture (University of Catania).
The fields of her research work mainly consist of: (i) Knowledge of historical masonry architecture, investigated through analysis of construction techniques, processes of deterioration and disintegration, transformations; (ii) the study of the processes of evolution and transformation of historical masonry architectures, investigated through analysis, interpretation, and comparison of documentary sources and direct survey; (iii) and the analysis of the history of restoration interventions, investigated through the use of archival sources.
The research areas have been approached at different scales (both building and urban scale) and concerning the seismic risk (prevention and post-seismic activities).
In the fields of prevention and post-seismic activities, she collaborated on several national research projects aimed at studying the historical masonry structures in seismic emergency contexts (i.e.: the collaboration in the design of Reconstruction Plans post-earthquake 2009; the research focused on the analysis of damage to define restoration criteria of two public historical buildings in Crevalcore after the 2012 earthquake). She was also involved in studies focused on the elaboration of seismic mitigation tools (i.e.: the project on preventive vulnerability analysis of the historic center of Faenza in 2011 and the five historical centers of the Romagna Faentina Union in 2017).
Her current work is focused on the small historic centers in the sicilian inner areas which are involved in the partial abandonment of the urban fabric, due to the progressive underpopulation and wrong planning policies. The scope of the research is identifying the main issues that this condition implies for the preservation and safety of urban fabric and defining ‘codes of practice’ or ‘guidelines’ for interventions to mitigate the vulnerability of the urban fabric.
The research period in Cottbus will provide an opportunity to learn about existing and ongoing research on small towns and compare it with Sicilian experiences.