Project Title: SENTIERI – Epidemiological Study of Residents in National Priority Contaminated Sites

Duration of the project2006 – ongoing


Project Summary

SENTIERI is the permanent epidemiological monitoring system of communities living in the main industrially contaminated areas in Italy.
It was created, and it has been improved, to respond to requests from local authorities in order to understand whether, and to what extent, the health of their residents was at risk in areas contaminated by the industries. It provides evidence for identifying priorities in risk management for public health interventions, remediation activities, and communication with stakeholders.
The system is essentially based on a descriptive area-based approach. At present the description of health profiles is based on five health outcomes: mortality, cancer incidence, hospital discharges, congenital anomalies, and children, adolescents and young adults’ health. A key element of SENTIERI project is the a priori evaluation of the epidemiological evidence of a causal association between the considered cause of disease and the exposure. When an a priori evidence is identified, it is given a greater importance in the comment of the study findings.
Last publication:
Zona A, Pasetto R, Fazzo L, Iavarone I, Bruno C, Pirastu R, Comba P (Eds.). SENTIERI. Epidemiological study of residents in national priority contaminated sites. Fifth report. Epidemiol Prev 2019;43(2-3S1):1-208.


Title of WP or Activity on inequalities

Environmental Justice and socioeconomic inequalities in the Italian industrially contaminated sites


WP/Activity Summary

For the biennium 2019-2021, SENTIERI has been enriched with a new task focusing on the theme of Environmental Justice and inequalities.
The aims of the WP are the following:

  • develop a conceptual model to apply the Environmental Justice principles to SENTIERI;
  • explore the feasibility to develop new socioeconomic indicators to be applied in SENTIERI;
  • analyse data of the last SENTIERI Report in order to assess the existence and the magnitude of inequalities between and within industrially contaminated areas.

Forthcoming publication:
Pasetto R, Iavarone I. (In press). Environmental Justice in industrially contaminated sites: from the development of a national epidemiological monitoring system to the birth of an international network. In: Mah A, Davis T, editors. Toxic truths: environmental justice and citizen science in a post-truth age. Manchester: Manchester University Press 2020.


Responsible of the project: Amerigo Zona (

Responsible of the WP/Activity on inequalities: Roberto Pasetto (

Department/Center: Environment and Health