Below you will find details of AUR's graduate course offering, by subject area, for fall 2022. Please note, this information may be subject to change. For enrolled students, please find the most up-to-date information on the MyAUR syllabus pages.


Fundraising is a complex and potentially very time-consuming task so a carefully targeted approach will save time and produce better results for the hard-pressed academic, archaeologist, or heritage manager. This course will examine the matter of funding from the applicant’s point of view, looking at questions such as how to choose an appropriate funding source (government, private, corporation, NGO, or individual donor) and develop a relationship with them, how ethics impinge on that choice, and the reporting procedures and proof of sustainability which may be required if you are successful. At the end of the course, students will be challenged in a group project to produce a complete campaign plan for an actual non-profit organization.

This course provides a background research methodology for graduate students of Sustainable Cultural Heritage. The course will develop skills in online and library research, quantitative analysis, focusing on the appropriate use and interpretation of quantitative techniques, qualitative analysis, and analysis of social media data. The last part of the course will be devoted to developing a research proposal that will be the basis of the thesis to be carried out over the summer and fall semesters


Cultural Heritage has become increasingly important as a symbol of identity at an individual, community, national and international level. Heritage identity can help to create cohesion and a spirit of community, or it can be a source of conflict. In post-conflict scenarios, cultural heritage projects can be a part of the stabilization process and reconstruction of the community. This course will explore current heritage issues critically analyzing sources of conflict and strategies for positive peacebuilding between and within heritage communities.

This course provides students with a foundational understanding of the ways in which economic analysis can be applied to cultural institutions and heritage resources. The course will enable archaeologists and practitioners in cultural- and heritage-related fields to apply economic reasoning to issues in their fields and to become well-informed and critical consumers of economic analysis.

This course examines the theory and practice of sustainable conservation. The course will focus on issues that form the current debate on conservation such as documentation and information management, values and interest groups, and stakeholder engagement as a form of site preservation. The course will also provide students with the necessary tools and examples for selecting sites for preservation, with a focus on preventive conservation. Reactive intervention is not sufficient to balance the long-term preservation of resources with the contemporary needs of users, and holistic approaches are currently being theorized, problematized, and explored worldwide. Preventive conservation and maintenance are two approaches that greatly facilitate the responsibilities of the manager, reducing the need for costly, labor-intensive conservation and restoration projects. Students will also learn practical methods for the physical conservation of different categories of cultural resources and will master a technical vocabulary adequate to communicate with conservation specialists.

Focused on a particular topic identified by the student as an area of particular interest and/or pertinent to his/her future career in Cultural Heritage, the thesis enables a student to demonstrate the knowledge and skills acquired during coursework, as well as their ability to conduct a research project and produce high-quality academic paper. Work on the thesis consists of intensive consultations with the thesis advisor, research work, and thesis writing. Upon successful submission of the thesis, students are required to defend the thesis in form of an oral examination. Students are examined by a committee of three professors: the thesis advisor and two other reviewers with expertise in the field related to the thesis topic. If possible, the examination committee should have one external member.


Examines the rationales, instruments, and practices of food policy. It provides an overview of the conceptual background, features, and aims of food policies and the regulatory frameworks in developed and developing countries. The first part of the course discusses the different approaches followed and the disciplinary contributions to policy and practice from agriculture, public health, trade, and environment perspectives. The influence of stakeholders and governance structures on policy formulation and implementation is also highlighted. The second part covers the evolution of food policies and regulations at the global, regional, and national levels and their implications. In addition to long-standing concerns about food security and nutrition, the course will also emphasize the food system’s growing challenges related to public health, food justice, and sustainable paths of global food production and consumption.

Provides research guidance for students to carefully plan and prepare their Master's thesis in Food Studies. This is a course largely based on classroom interactions and practice. Classes make creative use of lectures, discussions, and peer reviews to help students through the various steps of the planning and writing process. Students will be asked to report on their progress and discuss with other students and their instructor methodological issues and difficulties that they may face during the preliminary work on their social science thesis. The course covers the following: exploring the field and determining the subject and research question(s) of their thesis; achieving mastery of the necessary research methods; data analysis; developing the ability to think scientifically and proficiently in academic writing. The successful student will develop a solid and methodologically feasible research proposal as a basis for her/his Master's thesis.

Examines the role of food in influencing and shaping local development in rural areas. It examines the scope and characteristics of local food systems and the markets for typical products. It also reviews the range of other products and services delivered by rural areas for rural and urban communities. The course covers the main tenets, practices, and processes of rural development, with specific reference to developed countries, but also considering the global food markets and developing countries experiences. Rural development paths based on the multiple functions of farms will be analyzed in relation to local food systems as well as to the new roles that rural areas and actors can play to address emerging social needs and demands. The course will possibly include one or more field visits.

This course examines food writing in relation to food production, its economic, environmental, and social sustainability, and the social and cultural dimensions of food consumption. It will cover food writing in its various professional forms, across different media, and for different audiences: writing non-fiction essays, analytical papers, personal narratives, blogs, policy briefs, press releases, and writing for newspapers, magazines, and websites. Examples of such writing will be drawn from a wide range of writers and organizations. Students will also take photographs and videos to accompany their work. Italy is our classroom and textbook so students should be prepared to visit locales and institutions where food plays a role.

Enabling students to identify the meaning and significance of food in different societies by exploring the way that culture, gender, socioeconomic status, and religion influence food choices and preferences. Eating habits and patterns -namely how we eat, what with eat, and with whom we eat- are key elements in determining and communicating social identities. In Social and Cultural Dimensions of Food and Eating, we will determine how people use food to define themselves as individuals, groups, or whole societies. We will discuss food taboos and beliefs, the historical dynamism of food habits, contemporary food trends, indigenous sovereignty rights over natural resources, and contemporary critical issues such as food access, malnutrition, and food vulnerability as a climate change consequence. Identifying and defining the differences between eating and nutrition, the course will provide a holistic perspective on the study of food, tackling its influence on body perceptions and health issues. Furthermore, the course will provide qualitative methodological tools for applied research and project work on food and eating in both industrialized and developing countries' social and cultural contexts.

A geographic Information System (GIS) is a computer-based tool that analyzes, stores, manipulates, and visualizes geographic information, usually on a map. With increased awareness of geospatial technologies and their role in society, food studies and agriculture continue to embrace GIS to adapt to changing circumstances. By better understanding how features within the landscape interact, decision-makers can optimize operational efficiency and improve social and economic returns. This course will analyze this system through case studies from different contexts allowing us to gain more experience and knowledge on the potential of GIS as a tool to manage programs that support farmers and the environment as well as decision-making for food processing and distribution. This course will cover a general introduction to GIS using a free and open-source QGIS software package. Students will also critically assess the contribution of GIS to the theoretical and methodological development of food studies and agriculture worldwide.


Conflict is a fact of daily life: it can be destructive as well as constructive, but it needs to be dealt with productively. Resolution is a collaborative process by which differences are handled, and outcomes are jointly agreed upon by the interested parties. It is the transformation of the relationships and situations such that solutions are sustainable and self-correcting in the long term. This course will introduce the student to the common causes of conflicts and enable them to understand how and why they appear. Techniques and methods to approach, manage and resolve conflicts will be introduced, including the strategies of good listening and good communication skills. Various techniques will be examined and applied using selected case studies, including negotiation from a humanitarian perspective and negotiation with armed groups.

This course focuses on the international political and economic aspects of conflicts from WWII up to today. It explores the concepts of Empire and Hegemony in contemporary international affairs. The course also investigates various theories and strategies to avoid conflicts, such as hegemonic stability theory, balancing between major powers, cooperation within international institutions, trade integration, or socialization of norms and principles. The absence of a major war on a global scale does not indicate the presence of peace, since conflicts and competitions take place on a different level (through, for instance, trade wars, sanctions, boycotts, embargos, etc.). In addition to that, global actors in contemporary international political economy (ranging from states, religious and non-governmental organizations, to multinational corporations, arms dealers, transnational extremist organizations, etc.) often have competing objectives when waging the costs and benefits of war and peace. Only when the actors of conflicts and the political economy factors that drive them are addressed, can one understand the conditions of resolving the conflicts and promoting peace.

"Political Islam,” or the relationship between Islam and politics, became especially important in the post-9/11 world and with the rise of religious fundamentalism. This topic does not only concern scholars but also government officials, analysts, and experts. The main purpose of this course is to examine the political dimension of Islam in the context of an increasingly globalized world. Among the more specific issues that the course will address are the issues of 1) the potential of Islam, both as a set of beliefs and concrete, contemporary institutions and practices, for the affirmation of peace and peaceful co-existence of different cultures, ethnicities, and religions, 2) the relationship between Islamic teachings and practices and religious extremism and terrorism, 3) the contemporary Islam in the West.

Explores the complexities of governmental system and functioning in the contemporary global society. The course will explore different countries, focusing on the issue of democracy and government in regard to the country’s size, geo-political position, official ideology, and economic development. Students will have the opportunity to learn about the functions of political/state institutions and the factors that influence political processes in the global era, such as constitutions, legislation procedures, interest groups, political parties, elections, and NGOs, and will be provided with key conceptual and theoretical tools needed to analyze the relationship between democracy, conflict resolution, and peace between and within states.

Leads students to understand the functioning of international humanitarian interventions and aid supply in countries affected by a crisis (such as conflicts or natural disasters). It gives a firsthand understanding of what it is like to work under pressure in difficult circumstances. The course provides students with both theoretical and practical knowledge in order to equip them with all the tools necessary for successful work in the humanitarian sector. The course uses interactive tools and scenario-based teaching (such as simulation exercises).

To complete the MA degree in Peace Studies students are required to write an MA thesis. Students are expected to conduct their thesis preparations in intense consultations with their advisor. Preparations include specification of the thesis topic, development of the draft thesis, choosing appropriate methods, research and/or practical work, study trips (if necessary), work in archives, and other required activities. The MA thesis should contain an element of data analysis and make full use of experiences, knowledge, and research methodology that students have covered in the program. The thesis will expand students’ knowledge on a particular subject and will prepare them for future professional work.