TC301 Historic Sites

Preservation of Historic Sites

Organization of Symposia and workshops with the aim to exchange and compare experiences and to collect case histories. Two international symposia were already organized in Naples in 1996 and 2013. A special volume titled "Geotechnics and Heritage" was also published in 2013, containing invited lectures related to exemplary case records. The first J. Kerisel Special Lecture was successfull delivered by prof. Giovanni Calabresi during the 2013 ICSMGEin Paris . The second Kerisel Lecture was successfully delivered by prof. Carlo Viggiani in occasion of the 2017 Seoul ICSMGE. In 2015, two special issues of the Rivista Italiana di Geotecnica (Italian Geotechnical Journal) have been promoted with the aim of collecting additional case histories. A workshop was planned during the ECSMGE in Edinburgh and during the ICSMGE in Seoul.

Preservation of monuments and historic sites is one of the most challenging problems facing modern civilization. It involves in inextricable patterns various cultural, humanistic, social, technical and economic aspects. The complexity of the topic is such that a shared framework of reference is still lacking among art historians, architects, structural and geotechnical engineers. This is proved by the fact that, although there are exemplary cases of an integral saving of any structural components with its static and architectural function, as a material witness of the knowledge, the culture and the construction techniques of the original historical period, there are still examples of uncritical confidence in modern technology which leads to the replacement of previous structures with new ones, which only preserve an iconic appearance of the original monument.

For these reasons publishing short books on specialized topics, like well documented case studies of restoration works at one specific site or of a monument, or detailed overviews of construction techniques, intended as a material witness of knowledge of the historical period in which the monuments were built, or specific conservation/preservation works, may be of great value.

The audience for such books should be professionals and academics in the wider fields of civil engineering, architecture and cultural resources management, and particularly those involved in art history, history of architecture, geotechnical engineering, structural engineering, archaeology, restoration and cultural heritage management, and even the wider public.

Forthcoming titles in the series

1. General principles of preservation with emphasis on geotechnical aspects, by Giovanni Calabresi and Salvatore D’Agostino

2. The stabilization of the leaning tower of Pisa, by John Burland, Michele Jamiolkowski and Carlo Viggiani

3. The Pienza Cathedral, by Giovanni Calabresi

4. The restoration of Ghirlandina Tower in Modena and the assessment of soil-structure interaction by means of dynamic identification techniques, by Rossella Cadignani, Renato Lancellotta and Donato Sabia

5. The cathedrals of Pisa, Siena and Florence. The medieval building works, by Luca Giorgi and Pietro Matracchi

6. The Metropolitan Cathedral of Mexico City, by Efrain Ovando Shelley

7. Protecting the Sagrada Familia and Casa Milà from tunnelling construction, by Eduardo Alonso

8. Are the requirements of modern civilization compatible with the preservation of historic sites? The construction of the underground line in Naples, by Giulia Viggiani

The book series page has now been activated on the Publisher website, because the first book on the Ghirlandina tower is now in production. This is the link to the series page:

Contact / Further details

Series Editor: Prof. Renato Lancellotta (
Publisher: Alistair Bright (

By considering that each monuments is a "unicum" and taking into account the concept of "integrity" it is rather difficult to apply approaches based on guidelines to the preservation of monuments. Therefore the effort is devoted to

  • framing of the special requirements and constraints to be considered in any rehabilitation intervention on Monuments in order to preserve their of cultural and historical integrity;
  • geotechnical methodologies suitable for the interventions on Monuments and Historic sites.

The Second Kerisel Special Lecture was successfully devivered by prof. Carlo Viggiani at the 2017 Seoul ICSMGE.

A three-day International Symposium on Geotechnical Aspects of Heritage Structures (ISGHS 2019) will be organised by National Centre for Safety of Heritage Structure of IIT Madras (NCSHS-IITM) & IGS-Chennai Chapter in collaboration with IGS-Trichy Chapter and Anna University under the aegis of Technical Committee (TC301) of International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (ISSMGE). 

The venue is decided as IIT  Madras,  Chennai  which is strategically located in southern part of India with numerous heritage structures (including UNESCO World Heritage site of Mahabalipuram)  within its vicinity. 

Dates are fixed as 16 - 18  September 2019.  The 1st bulletin of the symposium has been already circulated.


No special links have been yet established, by considering the peculiarity of this topic.

# Type Full Name Country
1 Chair Renato Lancellotta Italy
2 Secretary Alessandro Flora Italy
3 Nominated by TC Chair Giovanni Calabresi Italy
4 Nominated by TC Chair Efraìn Ovando Shelley Mexico
5 Nominated by TC Chair Carlo Viggiani Italy
6 Nominated by TC Chair John Burland United Kingdom
7 Nominated Member Jamie Standing United Kingdom
8 Nominated Member Michele Jamiolkowski Italy
9 Nominated Member Mamoru Mimura Japan
10 Nominated Member Guido Gottardi Italy
11 Corresponding Member John Lambert Netherlands
12 Corresponding Member Charles Augarde United Kingdom
13 Nominated Member Will Howlett United Kingdom
14 Nominated Member Ivo Herle Germany
15 Corresponding Member Daniele Spizzichino Italy
16 Corresponding Member Heon-Joon PARK South Korea
17 Corresponding Member Dong-Soo Kim South Korea
18 Nominated Member I.V. Anirudhan India
19 Nominated Member K. Muthukkumaran India
20 Corresponding Member Stephan Jefferis United Kingdom
21 Corresponding Member Anargyros Alexandris Greece
22 Nominated Member Harry Saroglou Greece
23 Nominated Member Dimitrios Eglezos Greece
24 Nominated Member Chikaosa Tanimoto Japan
25 Nominated Member Kari Avellan Finland
26 Nominated Member Merita Guri Albania
27 Nominated Member Jean-David VERNHES France
28 Nominated Member Patrick Yong Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
29 Nominated Member Antonio Jaramillo Spain
30 Nominated Member V. Ulitsky Russia
31 Nominated Member M.B. LISYUK Russia
32 Nominated Member Masoud Makarchian Iran
33 Nominated Member Jean LAUNAY France
34 Corresponding Member Yoshinori Iwasaki Japan
35 Corresponding Member Orhan Inanir Turkey
36 Corresponding Member Christos Tsatsanifos Greece
37 Nominated Member Pilar Rodríguez Monteverde Spain

There is no news to show for this TC

Host Member Society: Italy

Short name: Historic Sites (TC301) - Terms of Reference 

GeoWorld GroupPreservation of Historic Sites (TC301)

Contact Technical Committee : Preservation of Historic Sites