Cultural and Social Anthropology

DACS is the doctoral program in cultural and social anthropology of the University of Milan-Bicocca. Students participate in an active research community of expert faculty, visiting professors and doctoral fellows whose interests include historical anthropology, politics, religion,
gender, health, art, migrations, and issues related to labor, environment and resources. The program is committed to long-term fieldwork, and welcomes proposal in all the fields of cultural and social anthropology with a preference for researches that cast light onto the transformations of Latin American, South-East Asian, Middle Eastern, African and Eastern Asian communities and societies. DACS pursues an active policy of collaboration with international research institutions, third-sector and no-profit organizations, which operate in European and extra-European contexts. The completion of the Ph.D. thesis in three years is a challenge that requires inspiration, discipline and organization. We streghthen our students’ autonomy and capacity of interdisciplinary analysis through constant and lively intellectual exchange with mentors, peers and researchers in all the fields of the humanities.


Director: Prof.ssa Alice Bellagamba
Deputy Director: Prof. Mauro Van Aken

Organizational secretary: Silvia Barberani, Claudia Mattalucci – [email protected] 

Objectives and research areas

DACS students receive the intellectual, material and documentary support they need to fully concentrate on their work and meet the challenge to produce a high quality academic contribution. The program encourages intellectual exchanges among students and between students and senior researchers in both formal and informal settings. We push students to develop their leadership qualities and cut the edges of contemporary anthropological debates. We offer them the opportunity to join our ongoing research projects and familiarize with the challenges of national and international research. We teach to follow research themes across disciplinary fields and question ethnography in light of current issues of broader concern: citizenship, economy, environment, gender, labor, migration, politics, health, education. The acquired competences are valuable in a variety of professional settings in addition to academic research.


The base of DACS living exchange of thoughts and ideas is a democratic and intellectually varied scientific environment made of senior and junior scholars, post-doctoral researchers and visiting fellows from abroad. In addition to anthropologists, faculty includes specialists of history, philosophy, geography, literary studies, and pedagogy. The anthropologists who participate in the program are specialists of different regions of the world (Europe, the Middle-East, Africa, Asia, South America, Oceania). They are interested in epistemology, politics, history, economy, gender, kinship, heritage, art, labor and dispossession. Four members of the committee are based abroad: Alessandro Monsutti (Institute of Advanced Studies of Geneva), Irene Maffi (UNIL-Losanna), Georg Klute (Bayreuth University), Thomas Fillitz (University of Vienna).

Teaching activities

DACS offers structured teaching to its students. A seminar is held twice monthly where alternatively, senior and junior scholars present their work or set the main terms of disciplinary and transdisciplinary debates (research ethics, methodologies, critical tools). There is also a specific training in academic skills (scientific styles of writing, project writing, structuring conferences, and participation in international symposiums). The students are regularly invited to present and discuss the steps of their research, and summer schools are scheduled to provide them with the opportunity to confront with external peers under senior researchers’ supervision. DACS students partecipate also in the courses and seminars organized by the Doctoral School of Milan-Bicocca on ethics, research management, career planning.


After consultation with the doctoral student and an evaluation of the research project, the coordinator of the doctoral program assigns him/her a supervisor. The supervisor helps the student to refine and expand the research project, and monitors the development of the research in the three years of the program. The community of supervisors exchanges ideas on the progress of each student in the conviction that supervision is collective intellectual project based on the sharing of competences, ideas and experiences. There is the possibility of changing supervisor once in the course of the program.

PhD Teaching Board
Barberani Silvia University of Milano-Bicocca  
Barenghi Mario Luigi University of Milano-Bicocca  
Bargna Leopoldo Ivan University of Milano-Bicocca  
Bellagamba Alice Università di Milano-Bicocca  
Brivio Alessandra University of Milano-Bicocca  
Castiglioni Marco University of Milano-Bicocca  
Della Misericordia Massimo Giuseppe University of Milano-Bicocca  
Letizia Chiara University of Milano-Bicocca  
Malighetti Roberto University of Milano-Bicocca  
Mattalucci Claudia University of Milano-Bicocca  
Rimoldi Luca University of Milano-Bicocca  
Schmidt Muller di Friedberg Marcella University of Milano-Bicocca  
Squarcina Enrico University of Milano-Bicocca  
Tassan Manuela University of Milano-Bicocca  
Van Aken Mauro Ivo University of Milano-Bicocca  
Vignato Silvia University of Milano-Bicocca  
Casciarri Barbara Université Paris 8, FR  
Ciavolella Riccardo IIAC/EHESS,FR  
D’Aloisio Fulvia Università della Campania  
Declich Francesca Università degli Studi di URBINO "Carlo BO"  
Favole Adriano Università degli Studi di Torino  
Grilli Simonetta Università degli Studi di Siena  
Maffi Irene Université de Lausanne, CH  
Matera Vincenzo Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna  
Monsutti Alessandro Graduate Institute, Genève, CH  
Osella Filippo University of Sussex, UK  
Ribeiro Corossacz Valeria Università di Modena e Reggio Emilia  
Riccio Bruno Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna  
Schneider Arndt University of Oslo, NO  
Siniscalchi Valeria EHESS,FR  
Viti Fabio University of Aix en Provence, FR  


by Scuola di dottorato, last updated on 12/04/2021