Digital Tools and Urban Form

Spatial units for the urban operating systems





#Architecture #DigitalTechnologies&DataScience




Cities are rapidly changing and producing new kinds and an unprecedented quantity of information that can be stored and analyzed. Technology is conditioning the way we visualize, represent and design: the methods we build our knowledge on.

The pervasive computational capabilities of the city generate two polarized reactions: great optimism on the one hand, in case big data are seen as the ultimate solution to major urban challenges; skepticism on the other hand, because the city emerges as inherently polymorphic, ever-changing, multi-scalar and hard to define.

This thesis is focused on the relationship between urban form and digital tools involved in analyzing and transforming the city. Studied objects are so-called digital urban twins, that is 3D city models featuring connections between different data layers and seamless data communication between real and virtual objects.

The main research question is whether urban morphology can provide insights into the limits and scope of currently adopted digital representations of the city.


  • Palma V. (2020, non pubblicato), “Riprogrammare la città digitale”, in Poli (ed.), [titolo da definire]. Anteferma.

  • Palma, V. (2020). “AI: Architectural Intelligence. Deep learning and heritage enviroments”. In M. Lo Turco M., Giovannini E.C., Mafrici N. (eds.), Digital & Documentation: Digital Strategies for Cultural Heritage (Vol. 2), pp. 109–119. Pavia University Press. ISBN 978-88-6952-123-2.

  • Andrianaivo L.N., D’Autilia R., Palma V. (2019). “Architecture recognition by means of convolutional neural networks”. ISPRS – International Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences, XLII-2-W15, pp. 77–84.

  • Scamuzzi I., Moretti S., Spallone R., Lo Turco M., Palma V. (2019). “Augmented Don Quixote: Performance teatrali e nuovi media digitali / Augmented Don Quixote: Theatrical performances and new digital media”. In Belardi P. (ed.), Proceedings of the 41th International Conference of Teachers of the disciplines of the Representation.

  • REFLECTIONS. The Art of Drawing. The Drawing of Art, 1, pp. 1367–1374. Gangemi. ISBN 978-88-492-3762-7.

    Palma V. (2019a). “Algoritmo”. Philosophy Kitchen – Rivista di filosofia contemporanea, Extra #3, pp. 221–223.

    Palma V. (2019b). “Architecture potentielle. Algoritmi, replicazioni e città”. Officina 24 (gen-mar), pp. 62–63. ISSN 2532-1218.

  • Palma V. (2019c). “Tra spazio reale e realtà virtuale”. In L. Siviero (ed.), Progetto e Data Mining, pp. 88–99. LetteraVentidue. ISBN 978-88-6242-390-8.

    Palma V. (2019d). “Towards deep learning for architecture: A monument recognition mobile app”. ISPRS – International Archives of Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences, XLII-2/W9, pp. 551–556.

  • Palma V., Spallone R., Vitali M. (2019a). “Digital Interactive Baroque Atria in Turin: A Project Aimed to Sharing and Enhancing Cultural Heritage”. In Luigini A. (ed.), Proceedings of the 1st International and Interdisciplinary Conference on Digital Environments for Education, Arts and Heritage. EARTH 2018. Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing, vol 919, pp. 314–325. Springer.

  • Palma V., Spallone R., Vitali M. (2019b). “Augmented Turin baroque atria: AR experiences for enhancing cultural heritage”. ISPRS – International Archives of Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences, XLII-2/W9, pp. 557–564.

  • Cecchini C., Cundari M.R., Palma V., Panarotto F. (2019). “Data, Models and Visualization: Connected Tools to Enhance the Fruition of the Architectural Heritage in the City of Padova”. In C. L. Marcos (Ed.), Graphic Imprints, pp. 633–646. Springer International Publishing.

  • Accorsi F., Palma V., Tosco T.A.E., Cutrì S., Robiglio M. (2019). “AdRem – Adaptive Remediation Toolkit”. In proceedings of SiCon 2019. Workshop su: Siti Contaminati. Esperienze negli interventi di risanamento, Brescia, 12-14 Febbraio 2019, pp. 739–750. ISBN 88-7850-022-4.

  • Palma V., Lo Turco M., Spallone R., Vitali M. (2018). “Augmented Iconography. AR applications to the fortified Turin in the Theatrum Sabaudiae”. In proceedings of Defensive Architecture of the Mediterranean, IX, pp. 1053–1060. ISBN 978-88-85745-10-0.