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PhD in Human Rights, Global Politics and Sustainability: Legal and Philosophical Perspectives

PhD in Human Rights

The international Ph.D. programme in Human Rights, Global Politics and Sustainability: Legal and Philosophical perspectives gives you the opportunity to carry out research in a lively and supportive environment.

The goal of this three-year Ph.D. Programme, entirely delivered in English, is to provide an educational path which will enable participants not only to carry out sound academic research, but also to undertake professional careers within a wide range of international, national and regional entities, in both the private and the public sectors.

The ideal candidate is a curious and open-minded researcher, willing to explore the variety of disciplines and approaches the programme has to offer.

The Programme is characterized by a strongly interdisciplinary approach, which involves the following research areas:

  • Agricultural, food and agri-environmental Law (Faculty members involved: M. Alabrese, E. Cristiani)
  • Public International Law (Faculty members involved: A. De Guttry, E. Sommario, F. Capone, L. Gradoni)
  • European Studies (Faculty members involved: G. Martinico, S. Giusti)
  • Political Philosophy (Faculty members involved: B. Henry, A. Pirni, M. Solinas)

Candidates are expected to submit research projects which deal with at least two of the research areas above (the main research area and a complementary one). 

Applicants are strongly recommended to visit the research profiles of the faculty members in order to get an insight into the research currently being conducted. It is important that your topic is one that we will be able to supervise, both for you, when making your decision about whether to apply to this Programme, and for us, when making our decisions regarding admissions.

The Ph.D. is awarded after three years of full-time research on the basis of a dissertation which should present the results of an original piece of research. Examination for the Ph.D. involves an oral examination (viva) by a Board of Experts.

Structure of the Programme

The Ph.D. programme’s structure includes mandatory lectures and research activities, but it also envisages the possibility to attend summer schools and to spend research periods abroad (a minimum of six months abroad is compulsory).

In particular, first-year Ph.D. students are required to attend the compulsory classes specifically designed for the programme. They are also encouraged to attend lectures, especially at graduate level, within the general field of their research. Note that – given the interdisciplinary nature of the programme – each student will be required to attend mandatory discipline-specific classes. This means that each student, independently from his/her topic of investigation, will take subject-specific classes in each of the four research areas involved in the Ph.D (Agri-food and environmental Law; Public International Law; European Studies; Political Philosophy). 

Moreover, research methodology courses are offered which will provide students with the opportunity to acquire methodological expertise and to apply it to substantive research in their chosen topic. A few classes devoted to acquiring professional skills, such as public speaking, will complement their educational path. To get an idea of the classes delivered see the current year courses (which can be subject to changes for the next academic year).

Throughout their studies, participants will work under the supervision of a faculty member who will meet with them regularly to discuss their work and provide feedback and advice.