Legal Sciences

The Ph.D. in Legal Sciences of the University of Milan Bicocca is a three-year intensive program for graduated students in advanced legal studies. It aims to train young scholars and provide research methods to grasp the interactions between national, supra-national and global law.
A key feature of the Ph.D. Program is its strong interdisciplinary perspective, which enables candidates to acquire advanced legal skills, techniques and methodologies.
Ph.D. candidates are required to complete a thesis in the form of a book-length manuscript, to be submitted for evaluation at the end of the third year.  

A cooperation agreement signed with the University of Nice Cote d’Azur for the period 2017-2019 has set up an International Joint Doctorate Program, covering the areas of Public Law, European and International Law. Successful Candidates are awarded a Double PhD Degree.
An agreement in force for 2018 with the Italian Revenues Agency (Agenzia delle Entrate), on the subject of International Tax Law, aims to award to candidates selected from the personnel of the Revenues Agency a specific “Executive” PhD.



Director: Prof. Stefania Ninatti

Objectives and research areas

The Program is structured in five different curricula, covering different areas of law. Each curriculum provides a different course of study:

1. Public Law, Public Economic Law, Philosophy of laws

This curriculum provides doctoral students with a deepened understanding of constitutional law, administrative law, public economic law and philosophy of laws. Classes include topics specific to each module, as well as interdisciplinary questions such as: the protection, including the international protection, of the rights of individuals vis-à-vis science and technology; the organisation of the State and local and functional authorities (universities, independent authorities); the function of public powers in regulating markets; rights and duties of aliens and foreigners; internet law.
2. Roman Law, Private Law, Labour Law, Taxation Law and Civil Procedure
This curriculum provides doctoral students with the cultural and practical groundings of civil laws, and the possibility to develop a deeper understanding of roman laws, private laws, labour law, taxation law and civil procedure. Classes, which must be attended along with the ones common to all doctoral students, reflect the approach of each one of the disciplines included in the curriculum.
3. Criminal Law and Criminal Procedure, Criminology, Criminal Economic Law, History of Criminal Law and Criminal Procedure
This curriculum includes criminal law modules, criminal procedure modules, criminology and historical approaches to criminal law and criminal procedure. This allows doctoral students to gain a wide cultural and practical understanding of criminal law, criminal procedures, criminology and history of criminal and procedural law. Classes, which must be attended along with the ones common to all doctoral students, reflect the approach of each one of the disciplines included in the curriculum.
4. Public, European and International Law
This curriculum is devoted to PhD research and training in the areas of International Law, European Union Law and Constitutional Law. The curriculum aims in particular at exploring the interconnections existing among these areas of legal studies, by promoting a cross-sectoral and multidisciplinary approach. In order to enhance its international projection, all research and teaching activities are carried out in English. 
5. Law and Pluralism
This curriculum, which is part of the “Department of Excellence” Programme, explores the legal possibilities arising out of situations of conflict generated by the cultural, ethnic, and religious pluralism of contemporary societies. The curriculum provides doctoral student with an interdisciplinary legal approach to issues arising out of pluralism. Particular attention is devoted to the following areas of study: Pluralism and democracy, by addressing the relationship between modern democracy, secularism, freedom of conscience, expression and religion; Public security, fight against terrorism and international cooperation, by exploring the tension between constitutional freedoms and issues of public order and security, in a national and international dimension; Pluralism and criminal justice, by tackling the phenomenon of culturally oriented crimes, the relevance that criminal jurisprudence devotes to cultural contexts and the role that culture plays in the execution of the punishment; Labour and ventures in a plural society, by  exploring issues of equal treatment and the balancing between organizational approaches and forms of labour that reflect cultural, ethnic and religious pluralism; Minors and the Family; by examining questions related to family law in a plural society, and by devoting particular attention to the protection of minors and individuals underage; Laws and plural societies through a historical and comparative perspective, by studying the issues mentioned in the previous modules from a historical lens (with a particular focus on ancient, medieval, modern and contemporary experiences) and/or a comparative perspective (drawing on public and private law). In order to foster internationalization, the activities of this curriculum will be carried out in English and Italian.  


The PhD, in each curriculum, gains the methodology to engage with the new legal challenges and disputes in the national and international horizon.

In that way the PhD takes part in the evolution of law and in the academic arena, because of the contact and relation with Professors at different Universities and law fields.

Teaching activities

Courses pursue two aims:  

  1. To equip the candidate with a general and cross-cutting legal background.
  2. To improve the candidate’s specific knowledge of his/her area research. 

Courses are organized between common modules, covering general aspects of law and methodology and devoted to first-year candidates, and thematic modules, which target legal issues addressed by each curriculum. 

PhD Teaching Board
News and events
by Scuola di dottorato, last updated on 29/10/2020