In this Master course I introduce the fundamental principles relevant to present-day and past distribution of plants. The aim is giving students the necessary biological knowledge to understand environmental and climate change and its relation to plant distribution.
The over-arching question is how changes in the environemnt affect biological processes from the level of individuals up to ecosystems.
This is a theoretical-practical course at the Bachelor level and it deals with flora identification and conservation. The objective is to provide the students with the necessary tools for the identification of the main groups of vascular plant taxa and provide knowledge about their evolutionary relationships, with a particular focus on the Mediterranean flora.
The final part of the course focuses on plant conservation and includes a visit to the Museum herbarium at La Sapienza, practical excersises and several excursions.
Aeneadum genetrix, hominum divumque voluptas,
alma Venus, caeli subter labentia signa
quae mare navigerum, quae terras frugiferentis
concelebras, per te quoniam genus omne animantum
concipitur vitisque, exortum lumina solis:
te, dea, te fugiunt venti, te nubila caeli
adventumque tuum, tibi suavis daedala tellus
summittit flores, tibi redent aequora ponti
placantumque nitet diffuso lumine caelum.
The course provides students with conceptual and methodological tools for the application of biological analyses to cultural heritage. A special focus is given to the use of DNA-based techniques, including ancient DNA, to investigate the origin of ancient artefacts, and their history. The students learn how to identify and investigate the biological materials that make up archaeological artworks and are present in materials from other ancient settings. They also learn how to identify the biological agents that deteriorate artworks and the strategies for cultural heritage conservation.
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