10 November 2023

In Sala Tricolore, the celebration for doctors and doctoral students studying Reggio Emilia from early childhood education experience

Now in its fifth year, the "Reggio Childhood Studies" Phd celebrated its first 4 graduates, welcomed the new 13 researchers and introduced itself to the city

An international and interdisciplinary course with faculty from around the world

They come from all over Italy and all over the world, France, China, Russia, Iran, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, the United States, New Zealand, Kenya, Brazil with various backgrounds behind them, philosophers, psychologists, musicians, pedagogists, architects, teachers, and the city of Reggio Emilia, starting with the early childhood education experience, becomes their place of residence and reference context from which to start their research for three years. They are the 48 PhD and PhD students in "Reggio Childhood Studies - from Early Childhood to Lifelong Learning," a young and innovative industrial doctorate program established just five years ago by the Department of Education and Human Sciences of the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia and the Reggio Children Foundation-Loris Malaguzzi Center as the industrial partner, content and container of the young scholars it hosts.

On the occasion of the celebration of the graduation of the first four PhDs in "Reggio Childhood Studies" and the beginning of the new cycle, with 13 new PhD students, a special day was organized today, November 10, 2023, in Sala del Tricolore with the Municipality of Reggio Emilia, which was also a meeting between the PhD and the city in its most highly symbolic place, where the Italian flag was born.

The celebration of PhD stuents

The ceremony was opened by Raffaella Curioni, Councillor for Education, Knowledge, University City. Professors Annamaria Contini, Director of the Department of Education and Human Sciences, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, then spoke, illustrating the new PhD curriculum in Visual literacy, whose grants will be funded by the Department's Project entitled "High social cost illiteracies: research tools for their reduction."

Carla Bagnoli, PhD Coordinator in Reggio Childhood Studies, and Carla Rinaldi, President of the Reggio Children Foundation, then spoke. Special mention went to the four new doctors Enrico Barbetti, Daniela Caserta, Barbara Donnici, and Laura Landi, accompanied as usual by friends and family.

The heart of the meeting was the lectio magistralis "Human Capital and Meritocracy" by Professor Marco Pagano, Department of Economics and Statistics, University Federico II of Naples.

The interventions of the institutions

"On the occasion of the first four doctoral students of Reggio Childhood Studies, to whom our congratulations go along with a welcome to all the doctoral students, it was only right to give public relevance by the municipal administration to this doctoral program that carries the city's name in its title," said Raffaella Curioni, Councillor for Education, Knowledge, University City. "The Academy's attention, especially international attention, to the educational experience of Reggio Emilia has always been high from the very beginning, as evidenced by the many relationships and friendships built over time. This project started five years ago with Desu Unimore that had the foresight to build a research path in Reggio Emilia that would last over time, building new meanings, and to identify an industrial partner as a traveling companion in an educational entity rooted in the educational knowledge of the city, Reggio Children Foundation."

"It has been an honor to follow these students on their journey," says Professor Carla Bagnoli, Coordinator of the Doctoral Program in Reggio Childhood Studies. "And to attend the doctoral award ceremony in such a symbolic place as the Tricolor Hall is like saying out loud: history hands over the baton to these young scholars. Our hope is that, through them, the culture of respect and scientific research will become the engines of history."

"Reggio Children Foundation is an industrial partner of this course," said Carla Rinaldi, president of Reggio Children Foundation "whose uniqueness we want to emphasize in this very place that represents the civil commitment of the citizens of Reggio Emilia to defend democracy, freedom and rights, starting with those of girls and boys. In fact, the real object of study of the doctoral students is the city itself, its history rich in values and innovations, its educational experience that the researchers are called to live and know, making it their own through different disciplines and in the relationship with a national and international faculty of the highest level."

Scolaships for 90% of PhD students

Almost all doctoral students, about 90 percent, are eligible for scholarships, thanks to the University, DESU and the generosity of partners who have deep ties to the city. Among them, representatives of Comer Industries, new partners as well as The LEGO Foundation brought their greetings. Then of course University of Modena and Reggio, Miur, Farmacie Comunali Riunite, Iren,Reggio Children Foundation, Emilia-Romagna Region. Over the years the scholarships have also been supported by Unindustria Reggio Emilia and Fondazione Manodori. Also speaking in the Tricolor Hall were Roberta Benedusi, Global Brand & Integration Director of Comer Industries, Cristian Fabbi, president of Reggio Children srl, and Davide Zanichelli, director of the Palazzo Magnani Foundation.

A parterre of professors, from Unimore to Mit and Harvard

Among the features of the "Reggio Childhood Studies" doctoral program are interdisciplinarity, interculturality and internationalization, which also means the opportunity to connect with top Italian and international universities, thanks to the group of Unimore faculty from different departments and professionals and academics from universities abroad, including education experts from the Scientific Committee of the Reggio Children Foundation. Scrolling through the work being done by doctoral students, speakers from the Universities of Milano Bicocca and Polimi, Urbino, Bologna, Padua, the Brera Academy, and, abroad, MIT in Boston, Harvard, Amsterdam, Toronto and others stand out.

From visual art to taste, from sustainability to the fight against the Mafia

Intentionally open to different fields of knowledge the PhD in Reggio Childhood Studies, which can be accessed with any Master's degree or equivalent degree acquired abroad, sees doctoral students at work on topics close to the educational and relational sphere, but with very different objects of study: ranging from the socio-semiotic study in visual art education, to the design of learning and family meeting spaces, to playful education, to the relationship between childhood, public space and mobility in cities, to taste as a seat of memories and stories, to education for sustainability, to different types of approaches for museum education, to intervention strategies for responding to the special educational needs of children from Mafia families, to research on how children experience different learning processes.

Job placement in different disciplines

Upon completion of the three years of full immersion, the Phd in Reggio Childhood Studies will allow scholars to enter the field of pedagogical and cultural planning, the organization of educational services dedicated to childhood, and in different disciplines at the national and international level, strengthened by having experienced at first hand the humus and reality of one of the world's most famous educational experiences for children.


For course information, the PhD website is: http://www.phdreggiochildhoodstudies.unimore.it/         

Press contacts:                   

Unimore ufficiostampa@unimore.it

Reggio Children's Foundation press office press@frchildren.org


To read the full press release:

Last modified: 07 December 2023

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