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Structural and Geotechnical Engineering

Offered by

Sapienza Università di Roma

Fields of Study

Engineering Studies

Working Languages

Italian, English


Structural and Geotechnical Engineering

Research Areas


The Ph.D. program in Structural Engineering is aimed at training a selected number of highly skilled professionals in structural engineering, with the academic and engineering credentials to assume leadership roles in industry and academia. The program concerns: I) the formulation and application of reliable models and methods for theoretical, numerical and experimental analysis of structural systems; II) the description of the resistant mechanism of structures to ensure their overall stability, the robust fulfilment of the design requirements and the accurate simulation of the relationship between external excitations and system response to optimize the structural behaviour and pursue innovative design strategies.

Structural engineering primarily studies civil and architectural systems but structures encountered in other areas - such as mechanical, aerospace and marine (naval, offshore) - are also of interest. For those structures, modelling, simulation and design are carried out to maximize their capability to withstand forces in different environmental conditions including earthquakes, tornadoes, fire, traffic-induced excitation, etc. Owing to the highly interdisciplinary nature of Structural Engineering, new research ideas are continuously fostered by the cross-pollination with the other companion areas of engineering.

It is certainly quite hard to draw a training programme in Structural Engineering able to guarantee a satisfactory coverage of such a wide range of topics, and the present Ph.D. program - which is basically devoted to fostering and properly driving individual research skills within a customized scientific path - makes no attempt in this respect. Yet, it aims at providing the student with a scientific environment as much open as possible, by encompassing both the fundamentals of modern engineering mechanics (materials, solids, and structures), and the advanced aspects of structural analysis and design (simulation techniques, and phenomenological/technical issues).

GEOTECHNICAL ENGINEERING deals with the interaction of the engineering structures with the subsoil, and is based on the mechanics of soils and rocks. In many respects, these materials can be regarded as continua and be studied using the fundamental tools of the mechanics of solids. However, several factors make the behaviour of soils and rocks different from that of the common building materials: for instance, the interaction between the soil particles and the pore fluids, the crack pattern in a rock mass, or the particulate structure of soils that sometimes may require a micro-mechanic approach. A growing interest is being devoted to the study of the dynamic interaction between the structures and the subsoil, to study the seismic response of a construction through an integrated and consistent approach.

The Ph.D. program in GEOTECHNICAL ENGINEERING provides young engineers with the highest education in this discipline, promoting a rigorous and autonomous research activity, which is accompanied by a number of broader learning activities. It is required that the research activity meets high standards and reaches an international significance. The research activities develop gradually along the three years of the doctorate programme, while the additional educational activities are mostly concentrated in the first part of the course.

PhD Full

Starting date:Nov 01, 2017
Duration:36 months

PhD Sandwich

Starting date: from Nov 01, 2017
Duration: from 3 to 12 months


Starting date: from Nov 01, 2017
Duration: from 3 to 12 months

Master research

Starting date: from Nov 01, 2017
Duration: from 3 to 6 months


Academic contact

Martina Vizzani

Institutional contact

Martina Vizzani