A consortium consisting of 42 academic and doctoral schools from 29 countries


with the Italian partner and convener (CeSPI)

and three PhD Programs offering a wide variety of research themes, related to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), on:

  • Economics & Statistics (Salerno)
  • International Relations, Political and Social Sciences (Rome)
  • Engineering, Energetics and Sustainability (CIRPS Consortium, Florence, Pisa, Turin and Rome)

to host their candidates.


A challenging international initiative with PHD candidates granted with mobility and research scholarships to carry out part of their research (6-9 months) in Italy with individual mentoring.



A very simple idea.

A network to link several academic graduate and PhD programs that already exist in (for now) 29 African, Asian and Latina American countries.

Just a South-South connection through which important research fields, relevant to the SDGs agenda, are in-depth studied in an international dialogue, exchanging ideas and results. Without creating anything new, a practical way to develop a community young researchers, that is a process of mutual learning by straightening links among them.



A enormous potential for partnership.

A network connecting relevant partners from Asia, Africa and Latin America. The spirit of a joint doctoral school; a concrete support to qualified researchers highly beneficial to them, but also an extraordinary potential to strengthen international links and to create bridges that can be valuable in implementing new joint research-actions projects related to specific SDGs.


March 2018 ...

Congratulations to our first PhD students for the academic year 2017/2018: Ali Reza from Iran, Ana Paula from Brazil, Daisy from Kenya and Malick (missing from the photo) from Senegal!




November 2018 ...

Bienvenue from Ivory Coast, Karine from Brazil, Marthe from Senegal, Tien from Viet Nam and Vatana from Cambodia with other PhD colleagues at the meeting venue, PhD in Political Science, Roma Tre University coordinated by Prof. Leopoldo Nuti and with Prof. Maria Rosaria Stabili, the academic contact point for our international students at Rome Tre.





An informal seminar at CeSPI on "When have policies been effective to improve food security in the South? Lessons learnt on the key ingredients for impact analysis" with Fernanda Guerrieri, former FAO Assistant Director General.






A doctoral seminar at CeSPI on "A pluralist approach to impact evaluation" with Prof. Nicoletta Stame, a leading expert in this field.





February 2019 ...


Course on "Methods for causal inference and program evaluation using Stata"

PhD students participate in the intensive course offered by CeSPI on Econometric modelling for causal inference and program evaluation held by dr. Giovanni Cerulli, IRCrES-CNR.


Course dates and location

February 13, February 27, March 11, March 18

Time: 10.00 – 13.00

CeSPI (Rome)


Course Agenda:

A lecture class at CeSPI on "Methods for causal inference and program evaluation using Stata" held by Dr. Giovanni Cerulli, a statistician who developed several Stata routines for estimating binary treatment models.

Nine PhD students from different countries (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Cambodia, Ivory Coast, Morocco, Mozambique, Senegal and Viet Nam) and some Italian PhD students participated in this post-graduate course.




June 2019 ...

A doctoral seminar at CeSPI on "Conducting mixed methods impact evaluations. Methodologies,processes and practices" with Luisa Belli, an evaluation expert, Project Evaluation Coordinator at FAO, with a background in tropical and subtropical agriculture and rural sociology. She has more than 15 years of experience in the management, monitoring and evaluation of development projects.







The final PhD student seminar at CeSPI aimed at gathering the young researchers for mutual discussions, presentations of their research projects and feedbacks.

Many congratulations to all the visiting PhD students for the academic year 2018/2019 on your success!







January 2020 ...


Despite the spreading of the Covid-19 virus and the correlated uncertainties all over the world, including Italy, the start of the new semester was not at risk. At the beginning of 2020 the enrollment procedures were completed and all training activities are continued. Here, the welcomed Luis Fernando Bermeo Alvarez (PhD in Law, Colombia), Pablo Nicolas Palumbo (PhD, Political Sicences, Argentina), Safia Fekkalouhail (PhD in Economics, Morocco), and Gbehe Bienvenu Yves-Getheme (PhD in Economics, Cote d'Ivoire).




April and May 2020 ...


All lectures and seminars have been adapted to online distance learning. Here a lecture class on "Methods for causal inference and program evaluation using Stata" held by Dr. Giovanni Cerulli.





June and July 2020 ...


Barbara Befani

is an Evaluation Methodologist with a MSc in Social Statistics and a (European) PhD in Socio-Economic and Statistical Studies. Since discussing her PhD thesis in Evaluation Methodology, she has gained 15 years of experience in designing / conducting evaluation research at the European (EU) and UN levels. In particular, innovative, rigorous, and appropriate methods to assess impact, like Bayesian Updating / Process Tracing and QCA. She has also worked on appropriate choice of evaluation methods and evaluation quality.



The focus of the Four-day PhD Student Course is on "QCA and Process Tracing".