Venice, Italy

Science Diplomacy: Improving Capacity of Science to Inform Policy

when 19 July 2021 - 30 July 2021
language English
duration 2 weeks
credits 4 EC
fee EUR 700

Science Diplomacy is a tool that recognizes science as a process for pursuing evidence and diplomacy as a process for dialogue and cooperation between different stakeholders. In our increasingly interconnected world, there is a growing need for science diplomacy as we are confronted by issues concerning agriculture or trade, automation or cryptocurrencies, peace & security, global health pandemics, and climate change, among many other complex challenges. Our decision-making power is strengthened or weakened by the relevance, timeliness, reliability, and communication of information in a fast-paced changing environment. While academia includes specialties in translational science, public policy, health policy and other policy-related fields, these programs do not address the needs of the vast matrix of other scientific disciplines to provide students with training and tools to effectively partner and communicate with non-scientists, whether they are policy-makers, community leaders or the general public. This is Science Diplomacy at its core—partnerships to “eliminate cultural, sectoral, and knowledge barriers.

As the COVID-19 pandemic is ongoing, VIU will continue to monitor the situation. Should the COVID-19 situation prevent international travel or the confirmation of the program on campus as scheduled, the activity will be moved online. Applicants and confirmed participants will be informed of any changes.

The decision on whether it will be possible to hold the activity in person at VIU or not shall be made by the end of January/mid-February, and in any case at least 3 months prior to the start date.

The fees will be revised consequently.

Course leader

William Pan, Duke University, USA (Scientific Coordinator)

Target group

Graduate students (Master’s and PhD) from various disciplines: Global / Public Health, Environmental Science, Economics & Political Science, Anthropology, Sociology & Demography, Biology, Engineering, Clinical Medicine.

Course aim

1- Introduction to the concepts of science diplomacy;

2- Raise awareness among young scientists of the role of science diplomacy has in building consensus and finding common interests among stakeholders (nations, communities, industries, NGOs, universities, etc.) to address local and global challenges related to economic development, environmental conservation, and human well-being;

3- Review case studies associated with local (or global) response and negotiations to complex problems such as air pollution (i.e. Padova), Sea Level Rise (e.g. Venice), gold mining and mercury pollution (e.g. Amazon), and emerging diseases (e.g. COVID-19).

Students will leave this workshop with the fundamental understanding of how to identify and communicate with stakeholders connected to their research.

Credits info

4 EC
Students will receive a certificate of attendance.

Fee info

EUR 700: Students from VIU member universities.
EUR 1400: Other applicants.

The fees will cover tuition, course materials, lunches in the San Servolo cafeteria (10 working days on campus), social events.
Student participants will be responsible for covering their own travel expenses to and from Venice and local transportation.

VIU Alumni are eligible for a reduced fee.


PhD candidates and post-docs from EU universities may be eligible for Erasmus+ mobility grant support.
Contact VIU Erasmus office: