Phygital world & Extended Reality: New frontiers in Cultural Heritage


Pierdicca Roberto Pierdicca

Roberto Pierdicca

Università Politecnica delle Marche, Italy

Sánchez Aparicio Luis Javier Sánchez Aparicio

Luis Javier Sánchez Aparicio

Technical School of Architectura - Higher Polytechnic School of Madrid, Spain

Pierdicca Carola Gatto

Carola Gatto

Università del Salento, Italy


The term "phygital" is a portmanteau of the words "physical" and "digital," and it refers to the blending of the physical and digital worlds. It describes the way that digital technology is increasingly integrated into physical spaces and experiences, and how physical objects and spaces are being transformed by digital technology. For example, a museum exhibit might combine traditional physical artifacts with interactive digital displays, providing new and tailored ways of fruition. Extended Reality (XR) is revolutionizing the way the public experience and interact with cultural environments, as well as the way researchers study and preserve tangible and intangible heritage. This special session aims to bring together XR experts to explore the “phygital” world and the possible new frontiers in virtual cultural heritage.

Topics will include but are not limited to:

  • XR for museums, cultural heritage, and archaeological areas preservation and enhancement.
  • Digital twins in monitoring and simulation for Cultural Heritage.
  • Virtual Restoration for cultural heritage sites and objects.
  • Metaverse experience for museum and heritage.
  • The study of Human behavior in cultural spaces.

The session will provide a platform for cross-disciplinary collaboration and knowledge exchange, fostering the advancement of XR in the field of virtual cultural heritage. We invite researchers, educators, industry professionals, and students to submit abstracts that relate to these topics and share their insights and experiences with the community.


  • Phygital
  • Photogrammetry
  • Sensible Spaces
  • Virtual Restoration
  • XR for Cultural Heritage and Arts
  • Digital Twin
  • Metaverse
  • Digitalization
  • Metaverse
  • Human Behaviour


Roberto Pierdicca is assistant professor and adjunct professor of Geomatics. His research interest is mainly focused on Geospatial Intelligence, Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, 3D Point Clouds. He is author of more than 100 papers in international conferences and journal, and participates to several international projects related to Cultural Heritage, Tourism Management, Education, Geosciences and Archaeology. In 2020 he was awarded by the European Geoscience Union with the Outstanding Early Career Researcher award and in 2022 he was named among the 2% of most cited researchers by Stanford and Elsevier.

Luis Javier Sánchez Aparicio is assistant proffesor at the Technical School of Architectura (Higher Polytechnic School of Madrid, Spain). His research topic are mainly focused on the development of geoinformatic approaches for the valorization, diagnosis and conservation of historical constructions. He is author of seventy research publications, mostly on this topic, participating in several national and european research projects focused on this topic. Currently is the principal investigator of the research project CAREEN (funded by the Community of Madrid) which attempts to use AI approach for the classification of point clouds in historical constructions.

Carola Gatto is a Ph.D. student in Science for Cultural Heritage at the University of Salento (Lecce). Her current research interests deal with digital curation in museology, eXtended Reality for cultural heritage, and the relation between museum fruition and wellbeing. She graduated magna cum laude with a master’s degree in European Heritage, Digital Media and the Information Society at the University of Salento in A.Y. 2017/2018.
After graduation, she spent one year as a research fellow at AVR Lab (Augmented and Virtual Reality Laboratory) of the Department of Engineering for Innovation of the University of Salento, during which she has been involved in some Italian and international projects in the field of Cultural Heritage.