Habitat and Energy
Issues related to Habitat and Energy are largely rapresented in the UN's 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, particularly in gaol 7 Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy; gaol 9 Build resilient infrastructure, promote sustainable industrialization and foster innovation; goal 11 Make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable; goal 13 Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.
Furthermore social housing in the field of international cooperation, and shelter in the humanitarian sector are the most salient topics of the Swiss international cooperation policy.

In collaboration with other academic institutions and non-governmental institutions, SUPSI participates in projects concerning both energy and habitat issues.


The University of applied sciences from Southern Switzerland is active since 2008 in theme related to housing and shelter. From 2008 to 2012 The World Habitat Research Centre (WHRC) was involved in interdisciplinary research on environmental, socio-economic, technical and cultural dimensions of the built environment in developing countries, under the supervision of Dr. Jennifer Duyne Barenstein - Senior researcher (at present Senior researcher ETH Zurich). Post-disaster reconstruction was one of the key competences of the WHRC that was pursued through research, consultancies, policy advocacy and education in partnerships with academic institutions, NGOs, public and private agencies and community organizations in low-, middle-, and high-income countries.

Pubblications and Award


Safer homes, stronger communities: a handbook for reconstructing after natural disasters

The Manual for Post-Disaster Reconstruction of the World Bank has been co-produced to assist policy makers and project managers engaged in large-scale post-disaster reconstruction programs make decisions about how to reconstruct housing and communities after natural disasters.


Advocacy of traditional earthquake-resistant construction

The advocacy of traditional earthquake-resistant construction received a Holcim Awards Acknowledgement prize. The project was praised for blending advanced engineering with traditional techniques and local materials to provide appropriate housing in an earthquake-prone and remote area of North-West Frontier Province, Pakistan.


Domenico Chianese
Senior Researcher