The paper presents the activity performed at the University of Brescia by students and researchers, belonging to different Mediterranean cultures and different disciplines, to prepare a documentary exhibition on irrigation techniques in water scarcity conditions, on the occasion of the International Year of Soils 2015. Traditional irrigation techniques were identified as a key aspect of soil conservation and agricultural practices, to build living and autopoietic ecosystems, also in adverse climatic conditions, and to adapt to climatic changes. Being a structural source of ecosystem survival, and being based on long-lasting observation of the climate and of the environment, they have deep roots in local cultures and they were identified as a common ground also for multicultural interaction. The core of the exhibition is structured in sections focused on techniques for collecting groundwater, atmospheric humidity and surface water, on water lifting techniques and on water distributive systems. The final section of the exhibition is devoted to the oases which are presented as an equilibrium ecosystem, established upon the alliance between man and nature and founded on the capability of collecting water.
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