Barbara Piga

Staff – Coordinator, Assistant Professor

An Architect by education, Barbara E. A. Piga is Assistant Professor at the Politecnico di Milano (POLIMI), where she is also research scientist and Coordinator of the Laboratorio di Simulazione Urbana Fausto Curti – labsimurb (POLIMI – Department of Architecture and Urban Studies) since its foundation in 2007. At labsimurb, she coordinates and leads projects related to experiential simulation and sensory urban design. She leads the participation in research calls and the management of funds. She is responsible for national and international networking and numerous national and international seminars and conferences. She is founding partner of the REAACH – Representation Advances and Challenges Association since its foundation in 2022She is part of the board of the interdepartmental research laboratory i.Drive – Interaction Between Driver, Road Infrastructure, Vehicle, And Environment since 2019, where she is responsible for mobility experiential simulation and the urban/landscape environment design guidelines (assessment and design perspective). She is member of the IEEE “Technical Committee on Immersive Learning Environments” (TC-ILE) of the “IEEE Education Society” (EdSoc).

She is the POLIMI Coordinator of two European Projects H2020 EIT Digital (Digital Cities) AR4CUP: Augmented Reality for Collaborative Urban Planning (2019 and 2020), where she is responsible for a novel co-design methodology through Augmented and Virtual Reality. Within these projects, she developed an innovative methodology for pre-assessing the experience of people in space through simulation: Experiential Environmental Impact Assessment – exp-EIA© (Copyright BOIP N. 123453 – 06.05.2020 and Copyright BOIP N. 130516 – 25.02.2021). She is on the Advisory Board of ARtwin H2020 European Project (2021-2022). She was part of the H2020 Lighthouse project Sharing Cities (2016-17) for the co-design methodology and activities for innovative urban services. At the national level she was part of the Città Studi Cambia (2017) and Città Studi Campus Sostenibile (2011-2016) and the Garibaldi-Repubblica (2007-2010) research projects. She was invited as Foreign Researcher at CRENAU – UMR 1563 AAU, Nantes – France (2014). She is instructor in POLIMI courses and design studios on the topic of simulation and representation for urban design (Architectural and Urban Simulation) since 2011. 

She is member of the GUDesign – Genealogy of Urban Design International Network (since 2021) and Associated Member of   (since 2017). She is member of the Editorial Committee of the International Journal of Sensory Environment, Architecture and Urban Space (since 2013). She is member of the Steering Committee of the European Architectural Envisioning Association (EAEA) (since 2009), an international association focused on endoscopy and environmental simulation. She is part of the International Ambiances Network (since 2011) and its Steering Committee (since 2015), an international research association working on urban ambiances with an interdisciplinary perspective. She is part of the Scientific Committee of the American and European Design Communication Association (DCA) (since 2014), an international society of academics and professionals of the graphic\design fields. She was member of the Steering Committee of the five years’ inter-university POLIMI-UNIMI project Città Studi Campus Sostenibile since its launch (2011 – 2016).

Her research interest is focused on the role of representation as an aid for anticipating the human\environment relationship (namely, environmental urban design and simulation) for urban design; she investigates the link between simulation and multi-sensory urban design in order to anticipate people reactions to future environments, and thus for supporting the urban design development from conception to evaluation and presentation. She investigates and proposes innovative forms of simulation, such as multi-sensory immersive environments, related to Mixed Reality, i.e. Augmented Reality (also Augmented Maquette), and Virtual Reality (Augmented Virtuality). She fosters a human-centered, multi-scalar, and interdisciplinary approach. She holds a Ph.D. in Urban Planning from POLIMI (2010).

Find more about Barbara E. A. Piga

Research Gate
Google Scholar

Engaged in these projects at labsimurb
MUSA Urban Regeneration, Cities of the Future
Luminous Planning Table (LPT)
AR4CUP 2020
AR4CUP 2019

Sharing Cities
Envisioning the City of the Future: Making the Invisible Visible” International competition (coordinator)

Città Studi Cambia
Translating Ambiance
Città Studi Campus Sostenibile
Linear Landscapes
Garibaldi – Repubblica

in the press and media coverage

List of public events related to the exp-EIA© (experiential – Environmental Impact Assessment) method by Piga, Boffi, Rainisio et al. 
exp-EIA© & City Sense (AR4CUP) Events

Marco Boffi & Barbara E. A. Piga (interview) \ Wired Next Fest 2021
video of the interview

Barbara E. A. Piga & Marco Boffi \ Milano Digital Week 2021
“Experiencing the City of Today and Tomorrow”

Barbara E. A. Piga (interview) \ RAI 3
Memex Doc – CambiaMenti – pt.6: Città

Barbara E. A. Piga  (interview) \
Simulazione Architettonica e Urbana: quali sono gli obiettivi e cosa si studia al Politecnico di Milano?

Fausto Curti, Andrea Arcidiacono, Barbara E.A. Piga \ Corriere della Sera
Torri e parchi, la sfida della città verticale