Studying and conserving forests and trees

Gianluca Piovesan is professor of Dendrology, Forest Ecology and Management, and of Landscape Ecological Forest Planning at the University of Tuscia, Department of Agriculture and Forest Sciences (DAFNE), Viterbo (Italy) where he directs the DendrologyLab and Landscape Ecological Forest Planning Lab.

I focus on: forest ecology and management, dendrology, ecological planning, dendroecology, tree longevity, nature conservation, old-growth forests, masting, restoration ecology, impacts of climate change at multiple spatial and temporal scales, historical ecology, paleoecology, natural capital, ecosystem services, sustainability.

Contacts - Email: Phone: +39 0761357387; Cell: +39 3804399787 Skype: gianluca.piovesan

Courses taught

Teacher of the following courses at University of Tuscia, Department Dafne - Top Italian Department for research excellence:

Forest Ecology and Management, Dendrology, Forest Monitoring, Ecological Planning of Forest Landscape, Dendroecology


Associate Editor of the following journals:


Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution


Last papers

Edward M. Schoolman, Scott Mensing, and Gianluca Piovesan. Land Use and the Human Impact on the Environment in Medieval Italy. The Journal of Interdisciplinary History Winter 2019, Vol. 49, No. 3, pp. 419–444

G. Piovesan, F. Biondi, M. Baliva, E. Presutti Saba, L. Calcagnile, G. Quarta, M. D’Elia, G. De Vivo, A. Schettino, A. DiFilippo. The oldest dated tree of Europe lives in the wild Pollino massif: Italus, a strip-bark Heldreich’s pine. Ecology, Volume99, Issue7 July 2018, Pages 1682-1684

G. Piovesan, F. Biondi, M. Baliva, L. Calcagnile, G. Quarta, A. Di Filippo (2018) Dating old hollow trees by applying a multistep tree-ring and radiocarbon procedure to trunk and exposed roots. MethodsX, 5, 495-502

Piovesan, G. & Lüttge, U. (2018) Tree growth dynamics during early ontogenetic stages in closed forests. Trees, Volume 32, Issue 3, pp 671–673

Mensing, Scott A., Schoolman, Edward M., Tunno, Irene, Noble, Paula J., Sagnotti, Leonardo, Florindo, Fabio, Piovesan, Gianluca (2018) Historical ecology reveals landscape transformation coincident with cultural development in central Italy since the Roman Period. Scientific Reports, 2138, 8, 1 NEVADA Today. The messy history of pristine landscapes

Piovesan Gianluca, Mercuri Anna Maria, Mensing A. Scott (2018) The potential of paleoecology for functional forest restoration planning: lessons from Late Holocene Italian pollen records. Plant Biosystems - An International Journal Dealing with all Aspects of Plant Biology, 152 (3), 508-514

A new method for assessing the age of old-growth forests. In this post, Associate Editor Nathalie Butt discusses a recent paper ‘Tree-ring based metrics for assessing the functional naturalness of forests‘ by Alfredo Di Filippo, Franco Biondi, Gianluca Piovesan and Emanuele Ziaco (2017) Tree ring‐based metrics for assessing old‐growth forest naturalness. Journal of Applied Ecology, 54(3): 737-749.

Recent Projects

DAFNE excellence project 2017 - WP1: Nature, Forests and Sustainable Management of Agro-Silvo-Pastoral systems. Italian Ministry of Education, Universities and Research (web site coming soon). VITERBO DECLARATION - On safeguarding functional beech forest ecosystems

Forest Conservation - Ancient and Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe - Unesco World Heritage site. Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise National Park ---- Forest beat -

Historical-ecological aspect of sustainability - Understanding Human Responses to Environmental Change Using a 2,500-Year Reconstruction of Paleoecologic and Socioeconomic History - NSF Award

Journal Covers

Last Congresses and Worshops

Foreste patrimonio dell'Umanità, Cinema Lumière, Bologna 13 dicembre ore 18.00

Premio non sprecare 2018, Luiss 29 novembre 2018 ore 9.00

HALF-EARTH DAY 2018 ----- Bologna 22 ottobre ore 15.00

Aula Magna / Dipartimento di Chimica Via Selmi 2

La salvaguardia della biodiversità è una delle grandi sfide che l’umanità si troverà a fronteggiare nei prossimi decenni. Da qui alla fine del secolo le perdite di biodiversità saranno enormi - si stima la scomparsa del 50% delle specie del Pianeta.

“Metà della Terra agli umani e metà della Terra al resto della vita”, è la proposta di Edward O. Wilson, che richiede un nuovo patto tra uomo e natura a tutela della persistenza della vita sul Pianeta.

Si discuterà della possibile applicazione del concetto di “Metà del Pianeta” in una tavola rotonda organizzata dall’Alma Mater Studiorum - Università di Bologna nell’ambito dell’ISA Topic 2018 “Game of Fears”.