91233 - Diversity and Inequalities in Global Phenomena

Academic Year 2023/2024

  • Moduli: Elena Macchioni (Modulo Lez.) Elena Macchioni (Modulo Gr1) Elena Macchioni (Modulo Gr2) Elena Macchioni (Modulo D.Ass)
  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures (Modulo Lez.) Traditional lectures (Modulo Gr1) Traditional lectures (Modulo Gr2) Traditional lectures (Modulo D.Ass)
  • Campus: Bologna
  • Corso: First cycle degree programme (L) in Political, Social and International Sciences (cod. 8853)

Learning outcomes

The course aims to present and deepen the main theoretical and methodological approaches in the analysis of diversity and inequalities related to global phenomena. At the end of the course, the student will be able to identify and critically analyse the main research traditions in the study of global processes, with particular reference to the analysis of diversity and inequality, distinguish between different types of actors, arenas and instruments, and link theories and case studies in the analysis of global processes.

Course contents

The course unfolds through the explanation and understanding of three concepts: globalisation, equality and inequality.

The work will be carried out within the framework of sociological theory through its specific languages.

In the first section, the concepts of: globalisation, equality/inequality will be explored by referring to the contributions and theories that from classical authors to the contemporary sociological debate allow for the analysis and understanding of inequality.

The phenomenon of globalisation will then be introduced in an attempt to answer the following questions: What does globalisation mean? How can it be organised politically and socially?

Finally, the theme of social acceleration will be introduced as a form of radicalisation of the globalisation process that touches aspects of individual and social life. The lectures will revolve around the following questions: What is it all about? How can its complexity be grasped? What are the challenges it poses?

In the second part of the course, a seminar mode of work will be adopted, dividing the participants into two groups in order to explore the effects and processes associated with the development of inequality in contemporary times.

Through individual in-depth studies and group work carried out under the supervision of the lecturer, the following themes will be investigated:

- welfare and social risks;

- labour market dynamics and inequalities;

- generations and life course;

- gender and inequalities;

- migration, differences and inequalities;

- digital inequalities.


The reference bibliography for attending students:

First part of the course (frontal)

- Giancola, O. and Salmieri, L. (eds.), Sociology of inequalities. Theories, methods, frameworks, Rome, Carocci editore, 2020 [Chapters 1; 2].

- Beck, U., What is globalisation. Risks and perspectives of planetary society, Rome, Carocci publisher, 2018.

. Rosa, H., Acceleration and Alienation. For a critical theory of time in late modernity, Einaudi Publishers: Turin, 2015.

Second part of the course (seminar part):

- Giancola, O. and Salmieri, L. (eds.), Sociology of inequalities. Theories, methods, fields, Carocci editore: Rome, 2020 [Chapters 6; 7; 8; 9; 10; 11].

At the beginning of the course - after the two groups for the seminar lectures have been set up and each participant has been assigned a topic for in-depth study - further materials and papers essential for the preparation of the seminars will be made available on Virtual.

The reference bibliography for NON-attending students:

- Giancola, O. and Salmieri, L. (eds.), Sociology of Inequalities. Teorie, metodi, ambiti, Carocci editore: Roma, 2020 [the whole text].

- Beck, U., What is globalisation. Risks and perspectives of planetary society, Carocci publisher: Rome, , 2018.

. Rosa, H., Acceleration and alienation. For a critical theory of time in late modernity, Turin, Einaudi Publishers, 2015.

A text of your choice from the following:

- Bech, U., Disuguaglianza senza confini, Laterza: Roma-Bari, 2011.

- Bordieu, P., Il dominio maschile, il Mulino: Bologna, 2014.

- Crouh, C., Lost identities. Globalization and nationalism, Laterza: Rome-Bari, 2019-.

- Santambrogio, A., Social Ecology. Society after the pandemic, Mondadori University: Milan, 2020-.

- Sassen, S., Expulsions. Brutality and complexity in the global economy, Il Mulino: Bologna, 2018.

- Sen, A. K., Inequality. A critical review. il Mulino: Bologna, 2010.

The chosen reading will form the basis for the in-depth thematic study required, which is equivalent to the work that colleagues will carry out during the seminars.

Teaching methods

The course adopts a method of organization of the teaching that provides for the division into two different sections. One section consists of frontal lessons (32) and aims at introducing students to the acquisition of basic conceptual and theoretical tools. Another section, organized in seminar mode (14 hours), is aimed at the application of knowledge and their deepening.

First part of the course (32 hours): frontal Through traditional lectures (and with the use of slides when necessary) are presented and discussed the contents of the course considered essential to understand the concepts of globalization, diversity and inequality. The first part of the course is therefore aimed at the acquisition of knowledge (of facts/events, procedures, concepts, theories).

Second part of the course (14 hours): seminar. In the seminar part of the course it is the interaction between students and with the teacher to be used: hence the division into 2 groups.

The students are asked to carry out a structured activity in the classroom to compare and verify the knowledge acquired through the reading of the indicated texts: they are therefore required to come to class having already read the assigned material, and are asked to reflect and elaborate on what they have learned.

Each seminar group participates in only one weekly lesson. In this way, the student has an adequate time to read, deepen and study the material, indicated by the teacher, in preparation for the lesson.

Assessment methods

Verification procedures for attending students:
In order to be considered as attending, it is necessary to attend 80% of the lectures, the presentation and in-depth study of a paper as well as all the in-depth activities that the lecturer will propose during the course.
The final grade will be the result of a series of partial tests, the content and characteristics of which are set out below.
- Intermediate test (end of October) in written form. The test will consist of three open questions relating to the content of the part of the lectures. (The grade obtained will contribute 45%).
- Presentation of an in-depth thematic study agreed with the lecturer at the beginning of the course and submission of short papers relating to the documents covered in the in-depth study (abstracts, reviews, critical questions, etc.) (these activities will contribute 20% to the final grade).
- Short multiple-choice and open-ended tests taken at the beginning of each seminar lecture in relation to the contents of the previous week's seminar (these activities will contribute to 20% of the final grade).
- Classroom participation and discussion during all lectures (these activities will contribute to 15% of the final grade).
Assessment procedures for NON-attending students:
Non-attending students will have to take a written test related to the texts indicated in the bibliography for non-attending students.
The test will consist of 3 open questions referring to the institutional part of the course + 2 open questions referring to the chosen monograph. The duration of the test will be 120 minutes. [The grade obtained will contribute to 55% of the final grade].
The aim of the oral test is to verify the student's ability to apply the notions and knowledge learnt and to make the necessary logical-deductive connections.
Grading system valid for all students irrespective of the type of test taken:
- Insufficient: not even approximate or incorrect knowledge of the subject, insufficient expository ability and use of appropriate vocabulary.
- 18-21: elementary knowledge of the subject, and/or not always correct, partial expository skills, sufficient use of appropriate vocabulary.
- 22-25: satisfactory knowledge of the subject, fairly sound expository skills, fair use of appropriate vocabulary.
- 26-29: good or very good knowledge of the subject, good or very good expository skills, good use of appropriate vocabulary.
- 30: precise knowledge of the subject, excellent expository skills, very good use of appropriate vocabulary.
- 30 cum laude: precise knowledge of the subject, excellent exposition skills, very good use of appropriate vocabulary and relevant personal reworking of knowledge.

Teaching tools

Throughout the course, where deemed necessary, the lecturer will make use of slides and/or other digital contributions (videos; short films; posts on social networks; presentations, etc.) useful to exemplify and update the concepts presented in the classroom.

The virtual platform will be used for the organisational aspects of the course (lesson schedule, division into working groups, etc.) and for sharing materials.

Office hours

See the website of Elena Macchioni


Good health and well-being Gender equality Reduced inequalities Partnerships for the goals

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.