Environmental sciences

Doctoral programme (PhD)
A.Y. 2019/2020
Study area
Science and Technology
Doctoral programme (PhD)
Dipartimento di Scienze e Politiche Ambientali - Via Celoria, 2 - Milano
The doctoral programme provides preparation and training in research in the various fields typical of Environmental Sciences, promoting interdisciplinary interaction of students with Italian and foreign research groups and with institutions that study and manage the environment, land and human health. The primary objectives of the programme include providing adequate knowledge of the multiple methodological, instrumental, analytical, statistical and model-based approaches to study of the environment; the skill to perform interdisciplinary integration and synthesis of know-how resulting from the study of the various components of environmental systems and their complex interactions; qualification and scientific productivity as preparatory elements for a career in research institutes or other professional frameworks.
The doctoral programme is highly interdisciplinary, centred on ensuring high standards of learning in the integrated study of complex environmental systems regarding: biodiversity expressed at all levels of organization of biodiversity, from the genetic to the molecular levels, to the organization of organisms, populations and communities; relations at all organizational levels between biological factors, and between the latter and the abiotic environment; diachronic and other interactions between humans and the environment in terms of effects of human activities and disturbance on natural environments and of the quality of living and working environments on toxicological risk and health hazards.
The programme particularly focuses on general themes, namely: analysis of natural and disturbed environments; study of environmental pollution and its ecotoxicological consequences, in vivo and in vitro (damage to the DNA and to proteins, cell damage, reproductive anomalies, developmental changes, teratogenesis and other biomarkers in animal and human models), and genetic, epigenetic and molecular mechanisms that control the cell cycle and metabolism, or that form the molecular basis for resistance to parasites (in plant models); study of plant and animal models of genetic and environmental adaptation and determinism of phenotypic variability in morphological, physiological and behavioural characters; expression of phenotypic plasticity and evolution of populations, in response to variable environmental conditions due to natural and human effects, consequences of climate change, fragmentation and alteration of habitats and direct human interference; study of symbiotic relations with particular reference to pathogenic mechanisms in antagonist symbiotic systems, evolutionary and phylogenetic aspects of symbiotic relations and application of symbionts for biocontrol; analysis of consequences of climatic factors, alterations in the structure of past and present natural habitats and transformations in zootechnical, agricultural and forestry practices on demography and population distribution, community composition and conservation of endangered species, and development of remediation methods for degraded environments and biocontrol of antieconomic species; study of land surface modelling processes and evolution with regard to the structural and lithological component, climate control, human component and present and past biotic communities; conservation of cultural and paleontological heritage and landscape; variations in geomorphological systems and subsequent changes in environmental hazard and risk scenarios; study of soil, surface deposits and landscape as evidence of interactions between humans and the environment; environmental indicators of climate change and palaeobiology of fossil populations; research on teaching methods used in secondary schools for subjects related to the programme.
Tutte le classi di laurea magistrale
Dipartimento di Scienze e Politiche Ambientali - Via Celoria, 2 - Milano
Title Professor(s)
Behavioural and evolutionary ecology
Ecological genomics and microbiomics
Biology of marine invertebrates
Animal biodiversity and conservation of terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems
DNA metabarcoding and community analysis in peri-glacial environments
Complexity and Biosystems
Ecotoxicology of emerging contaminants
Environmental contaminants and human risk assessment
In vitro genotoxicological evaluation of environmental pollutants: a new integrate testing strategy
Behavioural ecotoxicology
Environmental health
Biomarkers of oxidative damage and redox proteomics
Molecular evolution, symbiosis, and phylogenetics
Neuro evo-devo
Insect physiology and biotechnology
New in vitro models for the study of developmental neurotoxicity in accordance to the 3Rs principle
Plant responses to environmental stresses: a molecular approach
Plants environment relationships: from cell to ecosystems
Sustainable development and management of agroecosystems
Sustainable development and management of mountain areas
Promoting healthy and sustainable diets: consumer behaviour analysis
Nutrient recycling and agro-residues management
Precision livestock farming and omics applied to sustainable livestock production
Climate and its variability and change in Italy, the Alpine Region and the Mediterranean area
Geomorphological landscape changes in natural and urban contexts: hazard and risk analysis, geosites and geoheritage assessment, valorization and monitoring; environmental and climatic reconstructions
Development and application of innovative techniques (e.g.: remote sensing and modelling approaches) to evaluate the environmental effects of climate change and human activities
Anthropology and biomedicine of the body and skeleton in relation to the environment
The impacts of climate change: Firm, sectoral and trade level damage effects
Acid mine drainage and release of metals and other pollutants from active and abandoned mine lands
Environmental contaminants and in vitro species-specific models for toxicological evaluation
Forests, carbon cycle, climate change and extreme events
Environmentally sustainable materials and processes

Courses list

Courses or activities Professor(s) ECTS Total hours Language
Statistical analysis of ecological and environmental data 5 25 English
Courses or activities Professor(s) ECTS Total hours Language
Multivariate analysis of ecological, environmental and molecular data 4 20 English
Short course about Scientific Writing
2 10 English
Courses or activities Professor(s) ECTS Total hours Language
3Rs: Alternative mehods and Replacement 2 10 English
Courses or activities Professor(s) ECTS Total hours Language
Climate change ecology
2 10 English
Environmental archives and reconstruction
2 12 English
Courses or activities Professor(s) ECTS Total hours Language
Genomics for ecological and evolutionary studies: from DNA sequencing to data analysis
2 12 English


Places available: 8

Call for applications

Please refer to the call for admission test dates and contents, and how to register.

Application for admission: from 24/05/2019 to 24/06/2019

Application for matriculation: from 23/09/2019 to 06/11/2019

Read the Call

Attachments and documents

Attachment 1

Qualifications assessment