On 24, 25, 26 October Fabrica presents “SPACE AND EARTH DNA WEEK”: international experts will discuss in round tables about high technologies and design strategies of space exploration and building techniques, along with themes such as the relationship between people, machines, Space and planet Earth for managing sustainable cities, intelligent clothing and exploring the universe to build a better inhabited earth.


Paolo Nespoli, Senior Astronaut, European Space Agency (ESA)
Dava Newman, professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
Guillermo Trotti, architect and designer
Vittorio Cafaggi, D Airlab (Dainese)
Steven Brittan, designer and President at Studio Arts College International (SACI), Florence
Julien Cantegreil, NewSpace entrepreneur and activist
Rob Van Kranenburg, founder of The Internet of Things Council

Free entrance, events in English

Via Postioma, 54/F
Catena di Villorba (Tv)
For more information:

Paolo Nespoli

Wednesday, 24 October

Paolo Nespoli, Senior Astronaut, European Space Agency (ESA)

Lecture: “In Space for Earth”

Paolo Nespoli will describe how he got from a small provincial town in Italy to work for the European Space Agency and fly three times in Space. He will tell us about the ground preparation needed for being able to execute a long duration mission on the International Space Station, what astronauts do during the mission, the standard day in Space, the return to Earth.

After spending 8 years with the Italian Army right out of high school, Paolo Nespoli obtained a Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering and a Master of Science in Aeronautics and Astronautics from Polytechnic University of N.Y. (currently NYU).
He then worked in Italy as a Design Engineer before being hired as a Astronaut Training Engineer by the European Space Agency (ESA) at the newly formed European Astronaut Centre in Cologne, Germany.
In 1998 he was selected as an Astronaut by the Italian Space Agency, integrated into ESA’s Astronaut Corps and sent to train at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.
He flew his first Space flight in 2007 on STS-120, a short duration Space Shuttle mission to the International Space Station (ISS).
In 2010-11 he flew on ISS long duration mission Expedition-26/27 and then again in 2017 on ISS Expedition-52/53. He logged a total of 313 days in Space.


Thursday, 25 October

Dava Newman, professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Lecture: “Exploring Space For Earth: Earth’s Vital Signs Revealed”

Recent space science missions to Pluto and Jupiter, the discovery of thousands of exoplanets, and orbital missions to monitor Spaceship Earth will be highlighted. Humanity will become interplanetary, and is on a journey to Mars. We are closer to reaching the Red Planet with human explorers than we have ever been in our history. Space agencies, academia and industry are working on the technologies that will enable human “boots on Mars” in the 2030s. We are testing advanced technologies from solar electric propulsion to cutting edge life support systems, advanced space suit design, to the first crops grown in space, the journey to Mars is already unfolding in tangible ways today for tomorrow. However, Mars is not ‘Plan B’. Spaceship Earth, our pale blue dot, is the most magnificent planet to inhabit. Earth is speaking to us – are we listening? The past two years have been the hottest recorded on Earth since we began measuring global climate for the past 140 years.

Hundreds of gigatons of ice have been lost in Greenland and Antarctica, and levels of trapped greenhouse gas have reached over 410 parts per million of carbon dioxide. Earth’s vital signs tell a story of a planet in trouble, threatening sea-level rise, ocean acidity and plastic pollution might have disastrous implications for the health of communities worldwide. Actions and solutions to help regenerate to Earth’s oceans, land and air are discussed. The collective actions already underway shine a light on a healthier future between humanity and our home planet.
Professor Newman offers an orbital view of planet Earth’s interconnected systems through supercomputer data visualizations and stories to demonstrate risks, actions and solutions.Professor Dava Newman, former Deputy Administrator of NASA, is the Apollo Program Professor of Astronautics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and a Harvard–MIT Health, Sciences, and Technology faculty member in Cambridge, MA. Her research expertise is in multidisciplinary aerospace biomedical engineering investigating human performance across the spectrum of gravity. She is a leader in advanced Space suit design, dynamics and control of astronaut motion, leadership development, innovation and Space policy. Newman was the principal investigator on 4 spaceflight missions. Best known for her second skin BioSuit™ planetary EVA system, her advanced spacesuits inventions are now being applied to “soft suits” to study and enhance locomotion on Earth.

Guillermo Trotti

Guillermo Trotti, architect and designer

Lecture: “EarthDNA – Accelerating Positive Change for Spaceship Earth”

EarthDNA seeks to accelerate the transformative actions needed to assure the sustainability of human civilization on our planetary home, Spaceship Earth. We will mine the vast databases on the state of our planet to create compelling narratives and visualizations. We will enable individuals to connect more directly with our planet and to understand Earth’s vital signs and global ecological emergency we are now facing. The United Nations has recognized repeatedly that we need to make transformative changes to cope with climate change, ocean degradation, biodiversity loss and other global threats.

The challenge sounds daunting, but over the last fifty years the world has put into place the architecture to drive the changes we need. EarthDNA uses Big Data and AI to accelerate the global sustainability revolution just starting. EarthDNA seeks to inform, encourage, and enhance accountability for the actions by leaders at every level of government, business, education, and society worldwide.

Guillermo Trotti, president of Trotti & Associates, is an internationally recognized architect and designer specializing in habitats for Space and other extreme environments. He works in the intersection of technology, design, and sustainability, researching and developing cutting-edge ways of using new materials and technologies then using those designs to make the extreme habitable. For more than 25 years he taught design in architecture, and industrial design, at the University of Houston and at the Rhode Island School of Design respectively. He was the first architect to work with NASA and is currently collaborating with MIT on the BioSuit project, an advanced counter-pressure spacesuit for Lunar and Mars surface exploration.Trotti & Associates is working with MIT scientists and engineers on the development of a mechanical counter-pressure spacesuit rather than the present gas pressurized suits used in microgravity. This innovative design provides enhanced astronaut mobility during extra vehicular activities on the surface of the Moon or Mars. The suit acts as a second skin and is patterned from 3D laser scans that incorporate skin strain field maps for maximum mobility and natural movements, while requiring minimum energy expenditure for exploration tasks. The BioSuit was exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Super Heroes show in New York.

Vittorio Cafaggi

Vittorio Cafaggi, D Airlab (Dainese)

Lecture: “Intelligent clothing: airbags to protect humans today and tomorrow”

The D Airlab mission is “To advocate and deliver safety to people exposed to traumatic injuries in everyday activities”. In order to accomplish the mission, D Airlab employs  wearable airbags developed after long studies on ergonomics and used today by many motorcycle and ski World Champions for their own safety. The same technology is today applied for the protection of workers in height, elderly and epileptic people against falls and for children safety in cars. These projects for everyday life are leading the way to the protection of what will be “everyday life” in the future: Space travels.

Born in 1962, Vittorio Cafaggi has a degree in economics and business administration and is the CEO of D Airlab, an innovative startup company founded by Lino Dainese to transfer 45 years of know-how in the field of human protection in dangerous sports to other human activities. Vittorio has been working with Lino Dainese for 28 years, having the chance to work on many innovative projects connected with the protection of the human body with airbags and dedicated to astronauts health and safety.


Steven Brittan

Steven Brittan, designer and President at Studio Arts College International (SACI), Florence

Lecture: “Urbanization and Resilience; New Smart City tools for measuring and managing sustainable cities”

Climate Change cannot be addressed adequately without considering the impact of Urbanization. By 2050, 70% of the earth’s population will be living in cities. Juxtapose this with the disjunction between developed economies, emerging economies and barely surviving economies, holistic strategies are needed to combat the rapid movement towards an inevitable “hothouse” tipping point. We do have however in our arsenal the ability to create a global techno-sphere where all our systems are becoming more connected, measurable and interdependent. This presentation looks at environmental and technological strategies implemented by the Smart City movement including collaborations between private, corporate and government agencies on the integration of new technologies combined with resilient strategies in cities. These collaborations often supersede conservative or reactionary government accords and promises broader and more effective solutions to combating the ever increasing onslaught of climate change…and our survival on planet earth.

Steven Brittan is a designer with 25 years of leadership in the arts, education and commercial design. His academic and professional career places him at the intersection of art, design and technology, and how these dynamic fields can find meaningful application in the world. From this viewpoint, Steven collaborates with world renowned designers, consults to academic and corporate boards, design jury panels and innovation start-ups on topics like urban planning, renewable technologies and sustainable cities. In his current role as President at Studio Arts College International (SACI) in Florence, Italy, Steven developed project-based experiences integrated with creative opportunities afforded by Italian design culture. He taught at institutions such as Columbia University, Rhode Island School of Design and Harvard, where he earned his Master’s in Architecture with Distinction in Design.


Julien Cantegreil, NewSpace entrepreneur and activist

Lecture: “Space/Earth: Building a narrative for one of our generation’s most pressing exploration”

Earth and Space are twins: they mirror each other. Exploring Space is re-exploring earth, no less. In an age of conflicts and creeping militarization, it is a call for a deeper commitment to science, knowledge and wonder. In a technology driven age, it is a call for more humanities and a global inclusive narrative. Exploring Space builds a better inhabited earth. It is now time for action since, for the first time in history, Outer Space is here: we live in Space, as exemplified by MASCOT landing on Ryugu asteroid on this very month of October 2018, and so we need to know how to live there in a proper way. To inhabit a place requires concepts, design, narrative. So we will explore very practically how the humanist heritage/ European design tradition can be useful.

Julien Cantegreil is president of AsterIdea, a newly created European Not for profit dedicated to build concepts and narrative for Space exploration. An amateur pilot and diver, Julien is an entrepreneur: Founder & CEO of Our Space Labs, a Paris based New Space company dedicated to the resilience of LEO infrastructures, as well as Head of European Operations of Strike Protocols, a NY based fintech (blockchain) company. Formerly, deputy General counsel of the luxury world leader KERING, researcher (Ecole normale supérieure, Collège de France) and speech writer of the French Minister of Finance. A graduate from the Ecole normale supérieure (economics), Agrégation (philosophy), Yale Law School (LLM). PhD in Law at Sorbonne. Numerous pro bono activity. Julien has participated at Fabrica’s High on Subversion Festival, last March 2018.


Friday, 26 October

Round table with Paolo Nespoli, Dava Newman, Guillermo Trotti, Vittorio Cafaggi, Steven Brittan, Julien Cantegreil and Rob Van Kranenburg.



Rob Van Kranenburg, founder of The Internet of Things Council

Lecture: “Identity in the digital age. Designing Resonance”

Goods, persons, houses, situations and industrial processes all radiate data and create “digital twins”, virtual representations of real services and products. These twins exist as sets of properties in an analytic layer that is in many hands at the moment but not really under the control of stakeholders. Whoever or whatever gains agency in and on that layer (which defines governance of the everyday) must grasp the practice and theory of assigning, withdrawing, validating and defining the very nature of entitlements; who/what/when/where exists, how and why? The situation is hybrid in the sense that the digital twins actually begin to actuate back in the ‘analogue’ objects. This is the moment of ontological change. It demands a new toolset on the notion of identity itself.

Rob van Kranenburg (1964) is the Founder of Internet of Things Council. He works as Ecosystem Manager for the EU projects Tagitsmart and Next Generation Internet.
He wrote The Internet of Things, a critique of ambient technology and the all-seeing network of RFID (Radio-Frequency Identification), Network Notebooks 02, Institute of Network Cultures. He is co-founder of Bricolabs. Together with Christian Nold he published Situated Technologies Pamphlets 8: The Internet of People for a Post-Oil World.
Rob is co-editor of Enabling Things to Talk (IoT-A, Springer Open) and is in the SmartCitiesWorld Advisory Board. He chairs AC04 – IoT Hyper-connected Society of the IERC, The European Research Cluster on the Internet of Things. He is a member of The IoT Asia 2017 International Advisory Panel (IAP). Involved in building the ecosystem for the Next Generation Internet. Rob is an Intelligentsia Influencer.