During the recovery process following a massive earthquake in Italy, the construction of provisional housing and the restoration of historical centers were conducted by establishing relationships between diverse actors. In this study, we clarify the characteristics of the established processes of reconstruction governance (RG) at L’Aquila city. We identify the mutual relationships (MR) between the established processes of RG and implemented process of the reconstruction project (RP). First, a literature survey was conducted on the six phases of the reconstruction process, based on both government-led initiative and civic/professional-associations-university-led initiative. Second, the characteristics of RG protocols employed during the six phases were revealed by visualizing the RG protocol during each phase. Third, the characteristics of the implemented RP process were revealed by overlaying three types of RP in the historical center and its surrounding territory. Moreover, the MR between established RG processes and the implemented process of RP were explored, and the following four MRs were revealed:
1) The MR between established RG processes and the implementation process of cooperative restoration projects through foundation of a special office for restoration project maintenance was revealed. This MR led to extending the range of the RP from the fringe of the city walls to the historical center.
2) The MR between established RG processes and the implementation process of the cultural heritage maintenance project by recognition changes of civic association was revealed. This MR led to diversifying RG to establish agreements about the cooperative maintenance of the city wall to extend the range of the RP from the wall gate to the overall city walls and extend the type of RP to include cooperative maintenance and utilization.
3) The MR between established RG processes and the implemented process of public space improvement by project adoption and citizen participation was revealed. This MR led to developing RG as a collaborative system that included a civic association consortium, municipal government, the parish community, and a citizen territorial council.
4) The MR between established RG processes and the implemented process of walkway maintenance caused by village networking was revealed. This MR led to developing RG as a cooperative system that included a civic association and village autonomous association at different stages, to extend the range of the RP and to include the surrounding territory to the historical center.
Finally, our findings led to three important recommendations as follows:
1) The diversification and continuous strengthening of RG is required. Through construction of diverse RG in a recovery process, the type and range of RG is going to expand, and then that expansion will broaden the diversification of RG. To continue this MR, the RG is required to be diversified and to be strengthened continuously.
2) The early foundation of an intermediary support association is required, such as Urban Center L’Aquila, as an RG platform for coordinating the diverse actors involved in the recovery process after a huge natural disaster. By doing so, problems can be shared, and projects can be designed by diverse actors; moreover, a new governance system should be established according to specific RP objectives.
3) An expanded public offering project is required to encourage civic participation. By doing so, we can promote the RP in across historical centers and their surrounding territories.