Academic Year 2023/2024 - Teacher: SANTI DANIELE LA ROSA

Expected Learning Outcomes

The course is offered to 3rd year students and aims at delivering a project proposal to respond to some specific needs of transformation on an urban scale.
The teaching offer is based on the knowledge acquired by students during the previous course of Urban and Regional Planning and relative Studios.
The didactic activities guide students along a process of low-scale analysis of the landscape, and provide them with the essential elements for understanding the methods of construction of a project based on the integration of the plurality of components that characterize urban contexts. The course will make use of different Remote Sensing and GIS tools, that students will study during the parallel course "Sistemi Informativi per la Pianificazione Territoriale"
Particular importance will be given to innovative approaches to urban and landscape planning and design, such as the use of the concept of Ecosystem Services s to support planning and design solutions.

Course Structure

The course foresees a series of introductory lectures on the course' topics and individual work by the students, under the supervision of the Teacher. In the classroom, students proceed with the development of the project on an area that will be assigned to them at the beginning of the course, with the aim of minimizing the work to be done outside the STUDIO hours. The STUDIO DOES NOT FORESEE intermediate deadlines within its lifetime: 

The Studio will be organized so that students will be able to complete the work within the class hours

Information for students with disabilities

"As a guarantee of equal opportunities and in compliance with current laws, interested students can ask for a personal interview in order to plan any compensatory and/or dispensatory measures, based on their specific needs and on teaching objectives of the discipline. 
It is also possible to ask the departmental contacts of CInAP (Center for Active and Participatory Integration - Services for Disabilities and/or DSAs), in the persons of professor Anna De Angelis"

Required Prerequisites

Skills on Geographical Information Systems are recommended

Attendance of Lessons

Students must formally register for the course through the dedicated STUDIUM page. Attendance is not compulsory but highly adviced in order to complete the exercise work in class and under the teacher's support and supervision.

Detailed Course Content

The "Servizi Ecosistemici per la Progettazione Territoriale ed Urbana" course is part of the integrated course in "Sistemi Informativi per l'Ambiente e Territorio" together with the course "Sistemi Informativi per la Pianificazione Territorial", held in parallel in the same semester. The two courses aim to provide students with theoretical-practical tools for the design of urban-territorial transformation scenarios aimed at maximizing the Ecosystem Services provided within a certain study area.

The study area covered by Course will include a portion of a municipal area or with an entire municipality.
Through the analysis of the planning tools, the understanding of spatial processes of both urban and territorial value, as well as the socio-economic and cultural characteristics of the contexts analyzed, students will elaborate a proposal of a project mainly aimed at improving the overall level of sustainability of the study area.
The theoretical insights of the Studio will cover the following topics:

  • Ecosystem services and their relevance for spatial planning and design
  • Methodological approaches for the evaluation of ecosystem services
  • The integration between ecosystem services and urban and territorial planning
  • The relationship between city and countryside and the planning of new forms of urban and peri-urban agriculture for metropolitan contexts
  • Urban regeneration programmes
  • Nature-based solutions and sustainable drainage systems for mitigation and adaptation to climate change

The project elaboration phase will be preceded by a series of territorial analyzes involving the use of remote sensing techniques, which will be presented in the module "Geomatica per la pianificazione Territoriale,", which will be carried out in parallel in the same semester.

The project proposals will also be accompanied by general economic studies that quantify the economic resources necessary for their implementation.
The main, but not the only, papers to be produced within the course include:

  • Land use
  • Land Cover
  • Ecosystem services assessment
  • Infrastructural assets
  • Evaluations and metaproject
  • Project design

Textbook Information

References used in the Studio  will include a collection of scientific articles and book chapters that will be made available on the dedicated Studium page.

Examples include:

Gómez-Baggethun, E.; Barton, D.N. Classifying and valuing ecosystem services for urban planning. Ecol. Econ. 2013, 86, 235–245.

·       K. Grunewald, O. Bastian, J. Louda , A. Arcidiacono, P. Brzoska , M. Bue , N.I. Cetin, C. Dworczykh, L. Dubovac, A. Fitch , L. Jones, D. La Rosa, A. Mascarenhas, S. Ronchi, M.A. Sschlaepfe, D. Sikorskan, A. Tezer (2021). Lessons learned from implementing the ecosystem services concept in urban planning. Ecosystem Services,

La Rosa S.D. (2015). Il ruolo delle Aree Non Urbanizzate per la fornitura di Servizi Ecosistemici in contesti  periurbani. In Munafò M., Marchetti M., eds “Recuperiamo terreno. Analisi e prospettive per la gestione sostenibile della risorsa suolo”, Franco Angeli Milano. ISBN: 978889172291


Nordin, A. C., H. I. Hanson, and J. Alkan Olsson. (2017). Integration of the ecosystem services concept in planning documents from six municipalities in southwestern Sweden. Ecology and Society 22(3):26.

Sirakaya A, Cliquet A, Harris J (2018) Ecosystem services in cities: towards the international legal protection of ecosystem services in urban environments. Ecosyst Serv 29:205–212. https :// r.2017.01.001


Spyra M., La Rosa D., Zasada I., Sylla M., Shkaruba A. (2020). Governance of ecosystem services trade-offs in peri-urban landscapes. Land Use Policy, 104617,


Woodruff SC, BenDor TK (2016) Ecosystem services in urban planning: comparative paradigm and guidelines for high quality plans. Landscape and Urban Planning 152:90–100

Course Planning

 SubjectsText References
1Introduzione ai Servizi Ecosistemicipresentazione lezione, selezione di articoli scientifici
2Analisi e mappatura dei servizi ecosistemicipresentazione lezione, selezione di articoli scientifici
3Valutazione economica degli scenaripresentazione lezione, selezione di articoli scientifici
4Analisi dell'uso del suolopresentazione lezione, selezione di articoli scientifici
5Analisi della copertura del suolopresentazione lezione, selezione di articoli scientifici
6Definizione di scenari alternativi di Progetto territorialepresentazione lezione, selezione di articoli scientifici
7Le nuove forme di agricoltura urbana e peri-urbanapresentazione lezione, selezione di articoli scientifici
8I sistemi di drenaggio sostenibile per la mitigazione ed adattamento ai cambiamenti climatici in contesti urbanipresentazione lezione, selezione di articoli scientifici

Learning Assessment

Learning Assessment Procedures

The exam consists of an oral discussio of the project, to verify the general understanding of the topics covered.

Students who have attended 70% (50% for working students) of the hours of lectures and laboratory and who have completed the analytical and design documents necessary to fully define the assigned topic will be admitted to the final examination.

Grades will be attributed according to the following scheme:

Knowledge and understanding of the topic: Significant shortcoming and inaccuracies
Analysis and synthesis skills: Irrelevant. Frequent generalizations. Inability to synthesize
Use of references: Completely inappropriate
Knowledge and understanding of the topic: At threshold level. Obvious imperfections
Analysis and synthesis skills: Barely sufficient ability
Use of references: Barely appropriate
Knowledge and understanding of the topic: Routine knowledge 
Analysis and synthesis skills: Is able to analyze and synthesize correctly. Argues logically and coherently
Use of references: Uses standard references
Knowledge and understanding of the topic: Good knowledge
Analysis and synthesis skills: Has good analysis and synthesis skills. Topics are expressed consistently
Use of references: Uses standard references
Knowledge and understanding of the topic: Knowledge more than good
Analytical and synthesis skills: Has considerable analytical and synthesis skills
Use of references: Has deepened the topics
Knowledge and understanding of the topic: Excellent knowledge
Analytical and synthesis skills: Has considerable ability to analyze and synthesize.
Use of references: Important insights.

Examples of frequently asked questions and / or exercises

Methodological and theoretical approaches for the definition of design scenarios

Definition of Ecosystem Services

Methods for the quantification and evaluation of ecosystem services

Ecosystem Services and Urban Planning

Ecosystem services and Strategic Environmental Assessment