For a Smart and Green Urban Design: Nature-based Design for Future Habitats - the AURA Research Project


The paper reports the purposes and the progress of the AURA research project concerning the so-called Nature Based Solutions (NBS) and cross-disciplinary perspectives for future cities. Specifically, Design plays the role of coordinating experimental processes, through the ability to visualize complex processes and generate environmental-conscious solutions. The AURA research project is carried out in partnership with two private high-tech Companies, the Botanic Research Unit of the Department of Science and Technology of the University of Sannio and the Industrial Design Research Unit of the Department of Architecture of the University of Naples “Federico II”. The project is financed by the Italian Ministry of Economic Development and it focuses on testing solutions aimed at experimenting with technologies and advanced production methods (parametric modelling, 3d printing, digital sensors, open access, widespread and on-demand manufacturing) for the development of artefacts and systems capable of bringing together aspects of sustainability, hybridization characters with natural elements and control and mitigation of environmental risks. The research experiments new possible model in which different digital technologies cooperate with botanical elements capable of purifying the air. In particular, the research develops and prototypes urban furniture systems integrated with vegetal components and digital sensors to define operating models that can be defined as “smart&green”; i.e. capable of putting sustainable and responsive urban reactivation functions into a system which, considering the city as a complex habitat from both a biological, cultural and social point of view, is capable of proposing a new fertile relationships between human settlement and the environment.


Ivo Caruso
Researcher, Architecture, "Federico II" University of Naples, Italy

Alfonso Morone
Associate Professor, Dipartimento di Architettura, Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II, NA, Italy

Susanna Parlato
PhD Candidate, PDTA - Dipartimento di Pianificazione Design e Tecnologia dell'Architettura, Sapienza University of Rome, Napoli, Italy

Iole Sarno
PhD student, Architecture, Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II, Napoli, Italy

Guilherme Nicolau Adad
Student, Research Fellow, Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II, Agrigento, Italy


Presentation Type

Paper Presentation in a Themed Session


Architectonic, Spatial, and Environmental Design


Hybrid design, Urban design, Nature-based solutions, Data visualization tools

Digital Media