The Ph.D. programme is organized around five teaching topics: regional sciences, policy studies, urban geography and sociology, urban planning, research methodologies.
Each core comprises a wide range of activities reserved to Ph.D. students – courses, research and policy seminars, training and mentoring sessions – with the contribution of all members of the teaching committee, visiting scholars and experts.
The teaching core on regional science will provide the students with a basic understanding of core topics such as the location and agglomeration of activities and people, the functioning and consequences of interregional migration and the main theories of regional development. Policy options available to governments and their implications will also be discussed.
The teaching core on policy enables the students to develop analytical and critical skills relevant for understanding the challenges of public policy and its implementation.
The teaching core aims at familiarizing students with the wide range of disciplinary and trans-disciplinary theoretical approaches to the study of urban settings. Key debates on globalization and the city, social differentiation of urban and metropolitan spaces, contemporary cultural and gender perspectives on the city, the governance of local and regional economies, the public realm and the commons, socio-ecological approaches and urban resilience will be addressed through lectures and seminars.
The teaching core on urban planning explores regulatory, institutional, social and ethical aspects of spatial planning. Relevant topics and problems related to the spatial regulation of emerging phenomena in the city are also investigated, such as, for example, issues related to the shrinkage of some contemporary cities, the spread of informality or the question of corruption and organized crime infiltration in the governance of cities.
Qualitative and quantitative methodology
The teaching core in methodology aims at providing the students with introduction to both qualitative and quantitative methods applicable to the urban and regional research fields, including qualitative methods, the use of imagery, visual data, and visually-oriented materials in research, visualizing data, introduction to GIS using ArcGIS, introduction to Statistical Analysis using STATA, introduction to Network Analysis, Action research, building up and managing a reference library, academic writing.