Scholarship code CU4.18

Managing Scarce Resources: Ethical, Social and Educational Profiles

  • Reference person
  • Host University/Institute
    Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna - Pisa
  • Internship
  • Research Keywords
    Ethics of Climate Change
    Water (usage and consumption)
    Scarce Resources Management
  • Reference ERCs
    SH5_10 Ethics and its applications; social philosophy
    SH7_6 Environmental and climate change, societal impact and policy
    SH1_12 Environmental economics; resource and energy economics; agricultural economics
  • Reference SDGs
    GOAL 6: Clean Water and Sanitation
    GOAL 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities
    GOAL 16: Peace and Justice Strong Institutions


The research aims at addressing the ethical, social, and educational profiles of the so called “scarce resources”and their appropriate management. The fundamental focus will be devoted to the management of water. Accordingly, a specific attention will be dedicated to the public, agricultural and industrial usages of water, and the correlative priority settings. The comparative analysis, which could refer to the management of other fundamental scarce resources – such as (among others) land, forests, air,river basins and oceans, biodiversity – will be also welcomed. The expected research will benefit from the analysis of concrete case studies.

We encourage ambitious submissionsrelying on genuine transdisciplinarity and a plurality of approaches, including(just as preliminary exemplificatory list) ethical theories, political science,law sectors, environmental economics, and public and private management. Further relevant fields of research include the impact of climate change andthe ethics of sustainability on wide and urban areas, the transition toagri-food and industrial sustainability, finally, the possibility of innovatingcontexts of living togetherness in urban and non-urban areas. Theintergenerational justice approach will constitute the leading methodologicalfocus for addressing innovative ethical models for the redistribution of costs andburdens deriving from the climate change in specific areas of the World,Europe, and, more specifically, in Italy. Comparative policy analysis will bealso the key factors for addressing specific case studies, in cooperation with(all levels) institutional actors and international organizations operating onthe same crucial sectors.

In the most comprehensive sense,successful projects are expected to contribute to contemporary ethical andtheoretical-political debates related to sustainability, environmental ethics,theories of justice (including intergenerational) and global politicaltheories, through a critical discussion of issues such as allocation ofresponsibilities, potential redistribution of benefits/disadvantages,mitigation of discrimination and inequalities resulting from climate change andover- and mis-uses of scarce resources, at local, national and supranationallevel.

Suggested skills:

Openess towards interdisciplinary approaches, together with a solid competence in the social sciences area will be appreciated.

Research team and environment

The research will be mainly carriedout in the intellectually stimulating and highly engaging academic environmentof the National PhD School in “Sustainable Development and Climate Change”, andin the wider network of the scholars and institutions participating in the PhDCurriculum in ‘Theories, Institutions and Culture’, with specific reference tothe Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies (Pisa – Italy). At the Sant’AnnaSchool, the research will be developed within the Institute of Law, Politicsand Development (DIRPOLIS). The Institute conducts innovative research in thefields of law, political science, moral and political philosophy. Itsmultidisciplinary approach allows for a comprehensive representation of complexlegal, political, social and economic phenomena. Its manifold projects andactivities on environmental-related issues, carried out within a cooperationnetwork gathering a number of scholars from various European and non-Europeanuniversities, promote high level scientific research in the field of climatechange and sustainable development.

Due to the specificity of theproject, the research path will include a secondment at the “AcquaNovara.VCO”,a leading public enterprise in the water-services sector, based in Piedmont,Italy, that can serve as reference case-study, since it has been implementingfrom several years a wide and multifaceted strategy devoted to thestrengthening of the profile of sustainable consumption of water, also byconsolidating an interesting territorial stakeholders’ network.