Antonio G. Calafati


Talks & seminars 2010-2011

Rome, 15 December


On Italian marginal territory


Preliminary Programme


Milano, 23 novembre


Seeing (the city) like an economist


Workshop at Politecnico di Milano / Programme


Rome, 15 November


Cities and Metropolitan Regions in the European Project


Final Conference of the EU Project CATCH-MR / Programme


Paris, 30 October


Forecasting Cities' Development Trajectories: The Case of L'Aquila



Bari, 12 Octoberr

Cities in the Economic Future of Italy



Ancona, 10 October

"Territorial and Institutional Integration in the Marche Region"


L'Aquila, 27 settembre


L'Aquila 2030: A Strategy of Economic Development

Minister for Territorial Cohesion




Paris, 11 maggio

The Evolution of the European Urban System



Padua, April 12

"Cities' Boundaries and Structures: the Case of Padua"

University of Padua / Department of Economic Sciences



Milan, March 20

"Urban regeneration projects without cities: the Italian way"

Observatory Real Estate / Nomisma-Generali Real Estate


Any urban transformation project is associated to a given configuration private and social costs and benefits. These two economic dimensions can be explored and evaluated only with reference to a given territorial context. Any house, factory, public space or infrastructure is a 'point of intersection' of individuals' circadian cycle: it is a 'territorial node'. The individual and social rationality of the decision that has led to any urban transformation project can be judged only with reference to a given 'bounded' territory in terms of which the space of the effects of the project can be identified ex-ante by the decision makers. The main justification for urban planning is that it let emerge an 'normative setting' (formal and informal norms) ensuring that each urban transformation project has a sufficient degree of rationality from a private and a social evaluation perspective.

The spatial development trajectory that has characterised Italy in the past decades, which has led simultaneously to the current paradoxical over-and under-capitalisation of the territory, may be interpreted as the result of the 'unbounded territories' on which private and public agents have based their choices. Only the institutional acknowledgement of the 'functional urban areas' generated by territorial coalescence will allow to put under control the spatial development trajectory in Italy.

L'Aquila, March 17

"Cities in time: the past in the future in local economies"

On the Wings of L'Aquila: Abruzzo 2030 /OECD-University of Groningen Forum


Given an external shock, 'resistance' explains the scale of the disequilibrium determined by the shock – given the strength of the shock. Then 'resilience' explains the path the system will follow to recover from the disequilibrium. Higher the degree of resilience, faster the time of recovery – but a key question is the extent (magnitude) of the dis-equilibrium generated by the shock. With regards to cities, 'resilience' has a moral dimension (the desire to recover), a cognitive dimension (the ability to devise correct adjustment strategies) and an economic dimension (whether the city commands the required resources to accomplish the strategies). 'Resistance' 'and 'resilience' are features of the system's structure. Therefore, at any given time they are the result of the evolutionary trajectory that the system has previously followed: in this sense the future of a progressive system is rooted in its past. In the case of L'Aquila its physical dimension was 'fragile' but its economic system was quite 'resistant' with regards to the type of socio-economic shock that have characterised the Italian economy and society in the past two decades. It was certainly not a 'resilient' city, and the economic disruption generated by the earthquake has however been too large to be overcame through self-adjustment processes. The reconstruction of the physical dimension of L'Aquila has come as an opportunity also for a reconstruction of the city's socio-economic structure.