Clean Water & Sanitation #5 – History Research on Local Water System and Uses


Daniela Bergamotti



The aim of this activity is to raise awareness of the impact of technological progress on everyday life and of health and hygiene improvements brought about by the advent of drinking and wastewater treatment processes. The project results are shown in panels, designed by the different groups of students in cooperation with the art history and history and water utility experts and can be the object of exhibitions open to other students, families and the general community.


  • 14
  • 15
  • 16
  • 17
  • 18
  • 19


  • Clean water and sanitation


  • Between 2-5 hours

The activity includes:

  • Presentations by Italian and art history teachers on:
    •  the history of local water management
    • sanitary conditions over time
  • A list of assignments to be performed by different groups of students, including:
    • An analysis of ancient maps of the old water system and collection of information on the path of the channels, water uses and historical location names,
    • An exploration of the local area, taking pictures of statues, historical artefacts and sections of the channel,
    • A comparison of ancient charts with maps of the modern distribution and sewage networks,
    • A visit to the State Archives to complete the study and collect documentation on local water history, and
    • On-site visit of historical places and remains.

Teachers’ resources

  • Presentation on local water history (example with focus on Reggio Emilia)
  • Presentation on the history of water-borne diseases