Journal “Progettazione Sismica”

Prevention before the occurrence of a seismic event is without any doubt the most effectiveness choice against earthquakes in highly seismic countries like Italy.

Progettazione Sismica (Seismic Design in English), a four-monthly journal published by Eucentre (ex IUSS-Press), has just the ambition of increasing the culture of the seismic risk prevention through a continuous dissemination of information and awareness campaigns.

The word “design” is empathized in the title of the journal because only the practical description of real designed and constructed structures makes practitioners, academic world and authorities actually linked together. The target of Progettazione Sismica, in fact, are designers, practitioners, researchers, academic staff, authorities, students.

The project concerning the journal started in 2008 through an intense work aimed to define the organization, the content of the articles, the editorial board, the marketing strategies and, most of all, to identify esteemed and qualified authors, as well as to patiently and meticulously evaluate and review the first articles. It was therefore possible to print the first issue at the beginning of 2009. At the end of 2013, 5 years after the publication of the first issue, 16 issues containing 227 articles were printed and divulged involving 630 authors among academic staff, researchers and practitioners (372 unique authors). The paper journal had a press run of 1500 through 5000 copies depending on the typology of content, while the on-line previews of the journal has a larger number of contacts. Generally each issue consists of more than 150 pages of practical content (which become greater than 250 in the case of special issues or monothematic ones).

 The support of authorities, academic staff, researchers and practitioners has continued to be appreciable in terms of both quality and quantity, so as to be actually possible to pursue the mission of the journal during the last years. The evolution toward an increasingly number of practitioners and companies involved in the project was one of the objective of the strategy initially planned: it was achieved also by widening the typology of the articles. Anyway authors are not the only ones that worthily sustained the journal: also the subscribers and the readers, in fact, had a main role because “it is known that the readers, which are many and intelligent, support a journal and judge the usefulness, influence the content and the quality of the articles becoming the real authors.” (PS n.1-2009, Editorial).

 Currently the contents of the journal consist of editorials, practical extended articles, brief technical articles and special sections. The editorials dealt with relevant and controversial topics like the relationship between needs and resources, between earthquakes and insurances, between the high vulnerability of the existing buildings of the Italian heritage and the need to strength them to attain the required safety levels prescribed by the code provisions. In addition, the general need for prevention through strengthening interventions before the occurrence of a seismic event, the meaning of uniform hazard spectra, the consequences of a Mw = 7 earthquake in Italy, the definition of classes of seismic risk for buildings, the definition of a single index to evaluate the thermic and seismic performances of buildings have been analyzed and discussed.

The extended articles are focused on various practical aspects concerning the design issues and the construction of r.c. and r.c. precast structures, steel structures, timber structures and masonry structures, including bridges and infrastructures. The seismic strengthening of existing buildings, including innovative solutions, is also one of the main topics. Moreover, evaluations and considerations about hazard, microzonation and seismic input, vulnerability and seismic risk, innovative technologies, isolation systems, dissipative devices, modeling and numerical analysis, geotechnical issues, code provisions, in-situ tests and experimental laboratory tests are taken into account.

The brief technical articles, published since 2012, are focused on specific real cases (e.g. the construction of a relevant building or the strengthening intervention on existing structures) mainly described through drawings and photographic documentation. They can be written also using the free support of the editorial office, in order to permit to designers and practitioners to collaborate with the journal and to give visibility to their works, minimizing the time taken away from their activities. In addition to the contents described above, the Italian Civil Protection (DPC), The Laboratories University Network of Seismic Engineering (ReLUIS), the National Institute of Geophysic and Vulcanology (INGV) and the Global Earthquake Model Foundation (GEM) always gave important updated information about their activities in their own special sections published on the journal. Further sections with information on the activities of the Higher Council of Public Works, the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, the National Council of Graduate Engineers and the readers of the journal, are published less frequently.

Progettazione Sismica has collected and divulged a relevant amount of information on the seismic events of Abruzzo 2009 (260 pages, 21 articles, 144 authors), Tohoku 2011 (Japan), thanks to the large number of reports that came from the remarkable work of the reconnaissance teams and of the Japanese authorities and academic staff immediately after the seismic event, Emilia 2012 (230 pages, 16 articles, 71 authors).

The monothematic issue written in Italian and the special one written in English, focused on the earthquake of Abruzzo region, can be freely browse on the website of the journal, while the monothematic issue on the Emilia earthquake will be available since 2014.

Information about the issues of the journal and the world of the seismic engineering are divulged through media channels like the website, www.progettazionesismica.it, and some social networks (Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Viadeo). Moreover, agreement with media partners and Associations of Engineers, promotional campaign on the web, targeted communications by e-mail and attendance to exhibitions and conferences assured visibility and popularity to Progettazione Sismica during the last years.

Several documents can be browsed on the website in the section “Articles and previews”. Among them: the preview of each issue of the journal and the full-text of selected articles, brief technical articles and editorials. In particular, the Linkedin company page, consistently growing, at the end of 2013 reached almost 1000 followers and obtained 6000 through 7500 contacts for what concerns information about summaries and preview of each issue. The remaining, more recent, company pages on Twitter, Facebook and Google+ currently obtained less contacts, but they are consistently growing too.

Eucentre handle the distribution of Progettazione Sismica: go to the Bookstore.

 In order to further increase the visibility of the journal, various initiatives are currently evaluated. Among them: the definition of a new on-line web portal, the distribution of the electronic version of full issues and articles, the request for indexing, the definition of new monothematic issues on relevant topics.

 The last years the editorial staff, through different channels, has constantly invited authors and readers to sustain the editorial project, so this invitation is now repeated in order to “further increase the number of persons, companies and agencies that are determined in the task of building an always better Seismic Design” (PS n.1-2012, communication from the Editorial office).

Go to PROGETTAZIONE SISMICA website

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