PhD in Global Histories, Cultures, and Politics

Academic Year 2018-2019
Subject area Humanistic Studies
Cycle 34°
Coordinator Prof. Paolo Capuzzo. Starting from 28/01/2019 Prof. Raffaele Laudani.
Language English, Italian
Duration 3 years
Positions 7 positions with scholarship
Application deadline May 14, 2018 at 01:00 PM (Expired)
Final ranking list Final ranking list available on Studenti Online
Enrollment period From Jul 27, 2018 to Aug 06, 2018
Doctoral programme start date Nov 01, 2018
Operating centre
Main Department
Department of History and Cultures - DiSCi
Associated Departments
Department of Political and Social Sciences - SPS
Mobility abroad
Yes (6 months)
Curricula and Research topics

The PhD program is characterized by a global and interdisciplinary approach to the analysis of historical and social processes. The “global” is not merely understood as a wider geographical scale, but rather as an epistemic device leading the study of the present and the past. “Globalization” is therefore not taken as something given but as a set of processes, whose variable combination is necessarily the effect of the action of specific political, social, and economic forces that attract investigation through the interaction of multiple disciplinary approaches. Historiography  -touching upon topics transversal to different ages such as political, economic, social, and religious history, history of ideas, institutions, settlements, gender history - meets area and oriental studies to grasp the polycentric of global spaces traversed by transnational flows of people, ideas, and commodities. Intellectual and conceptual history, pursued in a non-Eurocentric perspective and attentive to theoretical traditions that have remained marginal in political, social, and cultural studies, allows an analysis of the prospects and limits of Western grand narratives. Anthropology, through a peculiar ethnographic sensitivity, demonstrates how phenomena with a global scope inscribe onto the concreteness of social actors’ experience. Political philosophy, understood as critical theory and entering constant dialogues with such approaches as cultural, postcolonial, and gender studies, provides the conceptual and analytical framework that is needed for the production of a global political theory. Geography provides the language and the methods that allow grasping and representing the multiple spatial and territorial frame within which the investigated processes develop – with a specific focus on “trans-scalarity”.

Job opportunities and potential areas of employment
Public and private research institutions, national and international universities, museums and cultural institutions; national and international organizations working in the field of multiculturalism, migration, labour mobility, international cooperation; multimedia publishing industry.
The training program aimed to provide transversal skills which can be promoted in many job contexts: building, management and implementation of scientific research projects, dissemination of research results through various communication tools (publishing, mapping, exhibition etc.).
Admission Board

Surname Name Institution Role e-mail
Balzani Roberto Università   di Bologna member
Jourdan Luca Università   di Bologna member
Laudani Raffaele Università   di Bologna member
Porciani Ilaria Università   di Bologna member
Trentin Massimiliano Università   di Bologna member
Baritono Raffaella Università   di Bologna substitute
Cavazza Stefano  Università   di Bologna substitute
Domenici Davide  Università   di Bologna substitute
Magnani Elisa Università   di Bologna substitute
Pallaver Karin Università   di Bologna substitute
Learning outcomes
The main purpose of the PhD School in Global Histories, Cultures and Politics is to train scholars in the main scientific area, which are involved in the PhD project: history, anthropology, political theory and history of political thought, oriental and area studies, religion studies, and geography. A particular attention will be devoted to the interdisciplinary dimension of research as well as to the critical reflection on the multiple methodologies of human and social sciences. The most important outcome of the PhD school will be the development of original PhD thesis and the communication and dissemination of their research results in broader research environments. The acquirement of some basic abilities in the field of research will be guaranteed by means of a specific training in the following fields: ability to integrate in international research networks, to publish in high-ranked scientific journals, to develop research projects for post-doc job opportunities.
Activities to be carried out by Doctoral candidates
The main activity of PhD students will be the research for the fulfilment of the final PhD thesis. This will involve different activities according to the thesis subject and the methodologies which will be employed: research in libraries and archives for collecting sources, critical analyisis of the sources, reconstruction of the scientific state of the art; fieldwork with ethnographical methodologies; media analysis and mapping; theoretical reflection on political concepts; philological analysis. PhD students will be encouraged to take part to scientific conferences, to project and realise seminars in order to locate their own research in wider scientific environments. There will be an annual conference in which all PhD students will present their research work to external discussants.
Some research typologies could also require traineeship at scientific and cultural institution, at public institutions in the field of economic and social administration, or at Ngo.
Research training activities compliant with the Doctoral programme's learning outcomes
Teaching activities will be organized in three main strands:
- Individual tuition: each PhD student will be supervised by one tutor, who will work in collaboration with the other members of the PhD committee. Supervision is aimed at providing the adequate analytical tools to carry out the research and to write the final dissertation. It will be focused both on research methodologies and the use of interdisciplinary perspectives. As part of their training, PhD students will be required to present their research during workshops and seminars organized in cooperation with other universities and/or research institutions.
- Interdisciplinary training: the PhD program will organize seminars and workshops in which the PhD students will get in touch with different methodologies and fields of enquiry. This strand is aimed at developing analytical tools needed to study history, politics and cultures in a global perspective. Thanks to these activities, PhD students will be able to develop the skills needed to situate their research in a wider interdisciplinary analytical framework.
- Job-oriented training activities: this strand is aimed at providing PhD students with teaching skills, network-building capacities, and the know-how needed to write and manage successful research proposals. These activities will be organized in cooperation with other PhD programs. Training will be provided by the Research Area staff of the University of Bologna, as well as by officers from various funding institutions.
In order to promote their international training, enrolled PhD students will be required to spend at least six months abroad. As part of their training, they will be encouraged to participate to international conferences and summer schools organized by the PhD program, as well as by international and Italian research institutions.
Internationalization features
The Phd school can take advantage of international networks established by members of the doctoral board and of the two departments in order to develop international consortia for the achievement of double or joint degree.
At present, thanks to the allotment of a competitive international grant, the Gerda Henkel Foundation has funded a scholarship; the Global Academy of Humanities and Critical Theory is promoting a project for the construction of a transnational Phd school with the University of Virginia.
A collaboration with German research institutions for doctoral training and funding – such as the Deutsches Historisches Institut Rom and the Bielefeld University - has been established long ago. We will further cooperate with institutions which fund scholarships for graduated students in foreign countries. In particular, there are already existing contacts with CONFAP and the China Scholarship Council.
A partnership with the Roosevelt Institute for American Studies in Middleburgh, Netherlands, will allow PhD student mobility for seminars and training activities.
Two cotutele agreements are soon going to be established with the University Paris 7 and the Sorbonne University. The cotutele agreement already established by the Department of Foreign Languages with the University of Coimbra, "Patrimónios de Influência Portuguesa", with the Centro de Estudos Sociais della Universidade de Coimbra will be extended to the Phd in Global Histories, Cultures and Politics.
The preference for the Italian/English languages - although in a context in which multiple languages expertise will be encouraged – responds to the need to create a common linguistic basis in order to facilitate the development of broad international cooperation networks.
Expected research results and products
The final dissertation is the main expected result of the three-year research period. During this period, PhD candidates will be encouraged to disseminate the preliminary results of their research in PhD seminars, national and international conferences, summer schools, and joint activities with other PhD programs. They will be also encouraged to organize seminars related to their research themes.
PhD students will be encouraged to submit scientific papers to peer-reviewed journals and volumes, in order to take advantage peer-reviewers’ comments. In this way, they will be able to evaluate the scientific value of their research, as well as their ability to adequately disseminate its results.
As for the expected outcomes, the wide thematic coverage and the interdisciplinarity of the PhD program is expected to obtain research results in different fields. It will favour a reconsideration of disciplinary traditions and develop innovative conceptual and methodological approaches, fostering a multiscalar analysis of global processes based on comparative and transnational perspectives. With a special focus on the entanglement between conceptual and empirical dimensions of the research, methodological innovations are expected in the fields of humanities and socio-political sciences spatial frameworks; intercultural contact/conflict; development of trade routes; processes of consumption and labour organization; political, social, and religious movements.
Doctoral programme Academic Board
Surname Name University/Intitution Qualification
BALZANI ROBERTO Università di Bologna Professore Ordinario
BARITONO RAFFAELLA Università di Bologna Professore Associato
CAMMARANO FULVIO Università di Bologna Professore Ordinario
CAPUZZO PAOLO Università di Bologna Professore Ordinario
CAVAZZA STEFANO Università di Bologna Professore Associato
CECERE GIUSEPPE Università di Bologna Professore Associato
DOGLIANI PATRIZIA Università di Bologna Professore Ordinario
DOMENICI DAVIDE Università di Bologna Ricercatore
FIORI ANTONIO Università di Bologna Professore Associato
JOURDAN LUCA Università di Bologna Professore Associato
LAUDANI RAFFAELE Università di Bologna Professore Associato
MAGNANI ELISA Università di Bologna Professore Associato
MAZZONE UMBERTO Università di Bologna Professore Associato
MEZZADRA SANDRO Università di Bologna Professore Associato
PALLAVER KARIN Università di Bologna Professore Associato
PORCIANI ILARIA Università di Bologna Professore Ordinario
RICCIARDI MAURIZIO Università di Bologna Professore Associato
TRENTIN MASSIMILIANO Università di Bologna Ricercatore
VECCHI ROBERTO Università di Bologna Professore Ordinario