The NASP Graduate School: Mission


Doctorates are key to successful research

Investing in graduate studies and especially doctoral programmes is a key step to strengthening national research capacity. Doctorates are key components of any lively research environment, both in the natural and the social sciences. Graduate schools combining several doctoral programmes are ideal instruments to create centers of excellence as they allow Universities to concentrate resources and exploit economies of scale.


Specialized learning and broad perspectives

Many of the most challenging policy questions facing the real world today must be approached from the different perspectives of the main social sciences. Just a few examples:

• designing effective welfare policies requires an understanding of their economic effects, of their multiple impact on society and of the policy environment in which they are planned and implemented;

• successful integration in the world economy requires achieving economic competitiveness, as well as the negotiations of viable policies and the anticipation of likely social problems;

• properly functioning labor markets rely on a mixture of well-designed institutions and adequate economic incentives consistent with the main features of the social and economic environment.

Innovation in scientific theories and methods often stems from "contamination" between different disciplinary perspectives. At the same time, however, each discipline must require its new members to undergo specialized training. A sociologist, a political scientist and philosopher need to acquire the advanced tool kit of their particular trade: doctorates are meant to train highly specialized researchers. To make sure that these basic tools are acquired, the first year of each doctorate is based largely on advanced coursework.

The NASP Graduate School thus provides an ideal environment to acquire both specialized learning and broad perspectives.


An international program

The world is the working environment of research students. A graduate school needs to be nested in the international research arena. The NASP GS is pursuing this goal in several ways.

The School is open to students from all over the world.

All classes are taught in English by a mixed Italian and international faculty.

The School has several institutional links with foreign universities in the US and Europe, including Boston College, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona, the London School of Economics, the Université Catholique de Louvain, the Amsterdam University, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Harvard University and others. This network is being presently increased to include other prestigious institutions worldwide.

Doctoral students are encouraged to spend their second year or part of their research period in a foreign University.

Dialog with the real world

Training in research must not be devoid from a clear understanding of real world issues. To ensure this goal, the School favors research programmes which are relevant not only from the methodological point of view, but also because they address those challenging questions affecting our economic, political and social life. This real world emphasis is strengthened by creating constant opportunities of dialog between the faculty, the students and practitioners.

PhD Programmes


Other Training Activities

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