Active PhD programmes (a.y. 2023/2024)

In the drop-down menus below you will find all the information on the PhD courses currently active for the a.y. 2022/2023:

PhD Coordinator: Prof. Gabriele CENTI


telephone: +39 392 1992182

Department of Mathematics, Computer Science, Physics and Earth Science

This PhD course is carried out in cooperation with Universities of Antwerp, Eindhoven University of Technology, participating in the project ERC Synergy SCOPE (Surface-Confined fast-modulated Plasma for process and Energy intensification in small molecules conversion; project No. 810182 funded by EU-H2020) which is coordinated by the University of Messina. Other foreign and Italian universities also participate in the Academic Board, also partners of the project SCOPE (UNIVERSITY OF ADELAIDE, Australia; UNIVERSITY OF WARWICK, United Kingdom) and the University of Calabria (Cosenza). The EUROPEAN RESEARCH INSTITUTE OF CATALYSIS (AISBL-ERIC) based in Brussels (Belgium) also participates.

This PhD course is also an Industrial PhD in collaboration with NEXTCHEM industry, a company recently established by the Maire/Tecnimont group, a multinational company among the main ones in the sector, based in Italy.

Language: PhD students are required to have certified knowledge of English at level B2 pursuant to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR), which must be possessed at the time of enrollment. Additional courses are provided at Unime language acting as a home (Centro Linguistico di Ateneo at UNIME) both to improve knowledge of English and possibly the local language. 

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PhD Coordinator: Prof. Michele GAETA


telephone: +39 090 221 3956

Department of Biomedical, Dental and Morphological and Functional Imaging Sciences

As part of the PhD in Bioengineering Applied to Medical Sciences, the topics of the program are addressed with reference to their application to health processes and respect for sustainability in production processes. The skills related to information technologies, robotics, sensors and materials will contribute to the development of PhD programmes focused on the design and testing of solutions that, starting from the possibility of having in real time a large amount of information from heterogeneous and distributed sources, have characteristics of dynamism, adaptability and self-organization that exceed the state of the art.

This PhD course is also an Industrial PhD in collaboration with SIFI and Medacta Companies, that carry out research and development activities.

Language: Some lessons and seminars will be held in English language.

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PhD Coordinator: Prof. Nunziacarla SPANO’

telephone: +39 090 676 5549 

Department of Chemical, Biological, Pharmaceutical and Environmental Sciences

This PhD Course offers its PhD students the opportunity to collaborate with companies that carry out research and development activities. The University of Messina and SIFI have developed in synergy R&D activities within the project HIPPOCRATES_PON, experimenting and validating technologically, innovative systems, based on micro and nano technologies, aimed at ophthalmological applications. The synergy has also led to the development of a patent on “MICROEMULSION PLATFORM FOR TOPICAL DELIVERY OF DRUGS”. In addition, the final objective of the new project, called WATERFALL, in synergy with the Doctoral Course, aims at the development of a complete system of disease management that allows the customization of the surgical treatment of cataract pathology.

This PhD course is aso an Industrial PhD in collaboration with Stazione Zoologica “Anton Dohrn” of Napoli and SIFI Company (R&D activities).

 Language: Some lectures and seminars will be held in English.

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PhD Coordinator: Prof. Fabrizio CESARONI


telephone: +39 090 676 6148

Department of Economics

This PhD course offers an internationally competitive training and research path. The aim is to create a stimulating environment for highly motivated students with adequate potential to undertake subsequent research activities both in academia and in national and international research institutes. The objectives are: to attract Italian and foreign students motivated and interested in carrying out advanced research activities, providing adequate theoretical and empirical skills to carry out research activities considered to be high profile from an international point of view. Develop the ability to conduct research individually and / or as members of international groups.

Language: Lectures and seminars will be held in English. The final thesis will also be written in English. During the admission exam the PhD students’ knowledge of the English language will be verified.

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PhD Coordinator: Prof. Vincenza CRUPI


telephone: +39 090 676 5004

Department of Mathematics, Computer Science, Physics and Earth Science

The PhD in Physics trains professional figures in various private sectors of industry, such as the sector of electronic components, optical and R&D. For years the PhD course actively collaborates with various companies by participating in national and international research projects, involving PhD students with the possibility of developing research themes for the thesis work of common interest. In particular, with the DTSMNS, a significant part of the project activities resulted in the publication of articles in international scientific journals. In recent years, a consolidated collaboration has been established with STMicroelectronics focused on issues concerning the
reliability of new devices for sustainable mobility. Finally, with SIFI, R&D activities have developed in the context of projects, experimenting and validating from a technological point of view, innovative systems, based on micro and Nano technologies, aimed at ophthalmological

This PhD course is also an Industrial Industrial PhD in collaboration with Distretto Tecnologico Sicilia Micro
e Nano Sistemi S.C.A.R.L., STMicroelectronics S.r.l. and SIFI company.

Language:  Training activities in English are provided, mainly aimed at facilitating the drafting of the final thesis in English and at encouraging the numerous international scientific collaborations typical of the PhD course. These linguistic skills will also favor the display of research results both in oral form (international congresses / schools) and in writing (drafting of any international research projects and research products).

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PhD Coordinator: Prof. Edoardo PROVERBIO


telephone: +39 090 676 5243

Department of Engineering

The PhD course in Industrial and Information Engineering completes the educational offer of the master’s degrees in the industrial and information area, providing doctoral students with the opportunity to acquire high-level skills and scientific qualification, through research training and higher education activities, in order to carry out highly qualified research activities at universities, public bodies or private entities, also for the purpose of accessing careers in public administrations and the integration of highly innovative professional paths.

The educational project transversally includes the strategic sectors of engineering and industrial chemistry as well as computer and electronic engineering through a multidisciplinary approach aimed at innovation and the development of new products and processes with particular emphasis on the challenges posed by the industry 4.0 paradigm.

The educational offer and the research topics are concentrated in the field of fundamental enabling technologies, combining theoretical-scientific aspects and those more specifically design with particular reference to:

a) Advanced materials and technologies for industrial, environmental and energy sectors; Development of advanced knowledge-intensive materials, devices and processes, with better performance in use and new potential; Design and development of converging technologies in the field of energy saving and environmental control

b) Advanced experimental methods applied to manufacturing systems and processes; Supporting technologies, such as characterization and non-destructive evaluation, to support the development of advanced and intelligent integrated materials, components and systems

c) Numerical modelling and development of numerical models for components, functional devices or structures; Predictive modelling applied to engineering sciences. Development of IT systems for the IoT (Internet of things). Edge processing and fog computing algorithms for the IoT.

The objective of the PhD will be to train high-level experts who are able to personally guide the development of innovation in advanced production sectors, in public and private research institutions and to aspire to top positions in the public administration as in industrial companies.

The professional figures that correspond to the training characteristics of the PhD are those of Production Manager, R&D Manager, Maintenance Manager, Specialist in the development of new materials, Specialist in control of structures. certificates.

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PhD Coordinator: Prof. Francesco Oliverio


telephone: +39 090 676 50898

Department of Mathematics, Computer Science, Physics and Earth Science

The educational project, which covers topics of Pure Mathematics, Applied Mathematics and Computational Sciences.

The PhD course is in agreement between the three Sicilian Universities of Catania, Messina and Palermo.

The primary objective of the PhD is the training of young researchers in the fields of Pure Mathematics, Applied Mathematics and Computational Sciences, and the creation of professionals who can find an outlet in the field of scientific research, university and non-university, as well as in industry.

The main career path of the PhD is in the research sector, both university and corporate.

In the university environment, new doctors will be able to participate in calls for research grants, both in Italy and abroad, to continue the research activity started with the doctorate.

The advanced training acquired during the PhD will allow new doctors to aspire to jobs at high-tech companies.

Finally, a possible career opening in the field of quality scientific communication should not be overlooked.

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PhD  Coordinator: Prof. Concetta DE STEFANO


telephone: +39 090 676 5749 

Department of Chemical, Biological, Pharmaceutical and Environmental Sciences

During the three-year period, the PhD Program in Chemical Sciences provides for the participation of PhD students in training and research activities, partly common to all PhD students, partly differentiated on the basis of the specific research project of each individual PhD student.
The training activities will be divided into specific lesson cycles for Phd students, mainly concentrated in the first and second year of the course, seminar cycles coordinated annually by the teaching staff on the basis of specific proposals and on the basis of incoming mobility programs for Italian researchers or teachers and foreigners. Furthermore, doctoral students will be encouraged to participate in doctoral schools related to their educational project.
The research activities foresee the proposal by the doctoral student of a specific theme, in line with the objectives of the doctoral course. The PhD student, under the guidance of the tutor assigned by the college, will attend the respective laboratories, where he will be able to use the latest generation equipment and tools, computer resources and specific software to optimally conduct his research. During the attendance in the laboratory, the doctoral student will have the opportunity to acquire skills to conduct research individually, constantly confronting himself with his tutor, and with the doctoral students, through specific periodic “meeting groups”.
PhD students will be constantly encouraged to spend periods at other Italian and foreign institutions / universities, also counting on the Erasmus mobility programs that the university promotes annually.
PhD students will be encouraged to participate in national and international conferences, during which they will be able to present the results of their research.
The results of the research will be the subject of scientific publications in qualified journals relevant to the sectors for which the specific research is conducted.

The aim of the course is to prepare competitive and high-level professionals capable of entering the research laboratories of academic institutes, industry and both public and private entities. The three-year course provides for the achievement of a high standard of training both on a theoretical and practical / experimental level. The training areas offered mainly concern the sectors of chemical processes and innovative materials, advanced chemical methodologies, the preparation of products of pharmaceutical and nutraceutical-food interest, nanotechnologies, energy conversion and information processing, ” isolation and structural characterization of active ingredients, of the analytical and toxicological control of synthetic and natural products, chemical structure, thermodynamics of equilibrium in solution, and the control and prevention of environmental damage. The research activity mainly focuses on the scientific disciplinary sectors: CHIM / 01, CHIM / 02, CHIM / 03, BIO / 10, CHIM / 06, CHIM / 08, CHIM / 09, CHIM / 10, CHIM / 12.

The PhD course in Chemical Sciences aims to train young people with high organizational skills and autonomous research, in the fields of various chemical and biochemical disciplines. Therefore, the PhD in Chemical Sciences offers a wide possibility of insertion into the world of work, both public and private, which can be summarized as follows:
– basic and applied research (chemical and biochemical research aimed at promoting and developing scientific and technological innovation, definition of new methods and application protocols, development and characterization of new products and formulations).
– industrial production activities (chemical analysis, quality control, research and development).
– teaching
– freelance profession and consultancy (consultancy in pure and applied chemistry, roles of high responsibility in the industrial sectors, in the synthesis and characterization of new materials, in the fields of health and pharmaceuticals, food, environment, energy , security, cultural heritage and public administration).

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 PhD Coordinator: Prof. Alessandra FALZONE


telephone: +39 090 676 5123

Department of Cognitive Science, Education and Cultural Studies

The PhD course offers broad-spectrum training starting from the cognitive turn. Cognitive sciences are in fact a field of study that does not refer to specific sectors but to research areas responding to complex and intrinsically multidisciplinary problems. The unitary object of study is the nature and functioning of the mind in any natural or artificial system, but it is investigated here by a multiplicity of approaches. Philosophy, psychology, neuroscience, linguistics, computer science and the analysis of georeferenced data, constitute the architraves of classical cognitivism. More recently it has extended to social and territorial sciences, and to those of evolution, producing new disciplines such as biogeography and cultural geography, biopolitics, bioethics, neuroeconomics, neuroaesthetics, cognitive ethology, neuropedagogy: all objects of the doctoral training proposed here. More than in a set of contents, cognitive sciences are recognized in an interdisciplinary method based on the integration between the rigor of natural and technological sciences and the breadth of the interpretative spectrum of human sciences, adopted as the fundamental training objective of the PhD course. The division into two curricula (philosophical-naturalistic and technological-social) coherent for the content and methodological horizon outlines a training framework entirely congruent with the ERC SH4 sector “The Human Mind and its complexity: cognition, psychology, linguistics, philosophy and education “.

Language: The course’s training path provides for the improvement of language skills, also encouraging periods of stay abroad (typically, six months on average for each PhD student) in research laboratories of interest. Pathways for the acquisition of language skills, for the visualization
and writing of research results. In detail:
-specific workshops (Italian and/or English with support of native
speakers) at levels of advancement; initiatives are also promoted in
connection with other research centers
-training in scientific English and its use in the main online
bibliographic databases (e.g. SBA, PubMed)
-stays abroad for research and linguistic improvement

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 PhD Coordinator: Prof. Daniela NOVARESE


telephone: +39 090 676 6016

Department of Political and Legal Sciences 

The PhD in Public Administration Sciences intends to provide a high-quality training offer, characterized by an interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary and transdisciplinary connotation and oriented both to the definition of research paths and to the qualification of public administration personnel.
It aims to make students acquire the methodological skills and content knowledge necessary for the training of highly specialized professional operators in the sectors of public administration, research in public and private institutions and in the field of professions, with the aim of training professionals with planning skills and able to pursue the advancement of knowledge in basic and applied research in the historical-political-institutional, legal, statistical-economic, economic-business areas.
It also provides for the acquisition of transversal skills to be transferred in the scientific and professional fields, with particular regard to all sectors of public and private administration.
The training activities will be developed in line with the objectives of the PNRR with particular regard to the needs of the digital transformation process of public administrations and the ecological transition.
The PNRR, as is known, provides for structural interventions aimed at supporting the digital transition and the modernization of public administration, communication infrastructures and the production system. In this perspective, it intends to ensure coverage of the whole territory with ultra-broadband networks, improve the competitiveness of industrial chains, facilitate the internationalization of companies, stimulate technology transfer to the productive world. At the same time, the same Plan aims to achieve the ecological transition of society and the economy in order to make the system sustainable and ensure its competitiveness. The importance, in this context, of efficient and adequate administrations to the changes in progress is evident which, not surprisingly, are the subject of transversal lines of development and implementation. The new systematic approach proposed by the PNNR requires, as an essential prerequisite for the success of the Plan, a competitive and adequate response from the Administrations, which necessarily involves the implementation and updating of traditional knowledge and the diversification of the same towards disciplines and knowledge that remain , to date, largely unrelated to the cultural background of public administrations.
In light of this framework, as part of the PhD activities, particular attention will be paid to the study of new technologies in the legal, economic and social sciences and to the in-depth study of issues related to the ecological transition.
The purpose of the PhD will be to develop research paths useful for defining and enhancing effective management, leadership and communication skills for public organizations, with specific reference to the selection, management and development of human resources, as well as to promote the digital transition of public administrations, through careful paths to the simplification of organizational models, as well as to the processes of selection and adoption of innovative technologies and digital solutions, in order to ensure greater effectiveness, efficiency and cost-effectiveness of public action.
A further objective of the course will be to support institutional planning also through the experimentation of more up-to-date governance models, also in relation to the resources provided by new information and communication technologies (ICT).
Therefore, it is foreseen the carrying out of activities useful to provide doctoral students with the knowledge and skills necessary for the research and identification of funding calls and the drafting of national, European and international projects, thanks to the support of specialized technical personnel.
The College will be made up of experts from academia, public administration roles and international organizations.
The activities will take place in an attractive and stimulating institutional environment, in which the organization of specialized laboratories, conferences and seminars will be held in which scholars and senior Italian and foreign officials will participate, which will allow the student to acquire autonomy and precious responsibilities for the professional path.
The Doctorate will make use of a quality assurance system different from the one set up for the I and II cycle of university training, aimed at improving the quality of the research environment and at defining transparent procedures for admission, supervision, release. degree and professional development of PhD students.

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 PhD Coordinator: Prof. Concetta PARRINELLO


telephone: +39 090 676 8681

Department of Law

This PhD course offers trainees highly specialized training in the scientific disciplinary fields of reference specific to each curriculum, through a critical analysis and careful examination of the doctrinal orientations and solutions adopted by internal and supranational jurisprudence.
The course proposes a training approach aimed at acquiring theoretical and methodological skills not only in relation to the individual areas, with a view to enhancing the specific features of the individual sectors (private, commercial, constitutional, criminal, internationalist and EU, administrative, historical -philosophical), but in a multidisciplinary and transversal perspective in order to train culturally ready research doctors, capable of successfully entering the professional world, even at national and supranational institutions.
Beyond content training, the transmission of a rigorous legal method will allow trainees to acquire the appropriate tools for the interpretation and application of multilevel rules. PhD training is enriched by linguistic specialization courses. Participation in a computer course that allows doctoral students to carry out research in the legal field is also envisaged through the use of databases.

Language: This Course offers a linguistic improvement with lessons concerning also the critical examination of judgments (in language) of the CJEU, the ECtHR and American Courts; the results of the research may be published in a collective volume. The didactic and seminar activities may be in English. Research stays abroad contribute to linguistic improvement. Language training includes 3 credits per year (18 hours per course year).

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 PhD Coordinator: Prof. Giuseppe BOTTARO


telephone: +39 090 676 6021

Department of Political and Legal Sciences

This PhD course was born from the awareness that only a multidisciplinary approach, typical of Political Sciences, can provide adequate tools and methodologies of knowledge, orientation and interpretation of the articulated nuances that characterize the complexity of the contemporary political world in its different and varied dimensions, in continuous and fast evolution. The educational objectives of the course are to provide doctoral students with an easily expendable training in research sectors and national and international institutions, to integrate a solid theoretical-conceptual preparation with the mastery of research methodologies, including the conscious use of the languages of European Union, to foster the ability to interpret the problems and transformations of contemporary society in an innovative way.

Language: The activity includes training courses that are organized around language skills. During the PhD course a significant part of lectures and seminars will be held in a foreign language. Oral communication and the presentation of research results (presentation of research projects), as well as the drafting of the main writing genres related to the research (report, essay, journal article, monograph) may take place in a foreign language.

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PhD Coordinator: Prof. Caterina MALTA


telephone: +39 090 676 6218

Department of ancient and modern civilizations

The aim of this PhD course is to train scholars with highly qualified specialist research tools in line with the most advanced international research, with a wide and synergistic offer capable of high-level employment effects. The curriculum of ancient and modern Philology provides, for classical languages and literature and ancient and modern Italian literature, skills necessary for a study of texts on the philological, historical-linguistic, critical-literary level, applicable to different professional fields: such as: research, teaching secondary schools, publishing, journalism. The curriculum of Anthropology and history from the Middle Ages to the contemporary age provides for a competitive training in teaching and research, on the topics: territory and its transformations based on anthropological and socio-cultural dynamics, historical roots of Europe, incidence of political and religious factors on modernity , interculturality and identity through narrative forms of certain social groups. The curriculum of Archeology and ancient history trains qualified professionals, active at managerial and research level in the regional and Mediterranean context, capable of managing knowledge, conservation, enhancement of BC. The Philosophy curriculum trains qualified researchers in the whole range of philosophical disciplines, in historical and theoretical perspectives, on the topics: philosophy of complexity, geophilosophy., Biopolitics, bioethics, philosophy and science.

Language: Language training will be favored by contact with scholars from foreign universities, with the possibility of seminars in a foreign language. The PhD course will leverage the research collaborations it has with foreign institutions and universities. For the writing of the thesis, a 1 month stay abroad at Institutions and Bibl is foreseen. more suitable, during which the student can take language courses.

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PhD Coordinator: Prof. Francesco FAZIO


telephone: +39 090 676 6516

Department of Veterinary

The PhD Program in Veterinary Sciences aims to train research doctors who, through different experimental activities of an interdisciplinary nature and with innovative investigative methodologies, can analyze and expand research topics in basic, pre-clinical, clinical and non-clinical (animal production and inspection of food of animal origin).

The PhD is divided into 3 Curricula, listed below:
• Morpho-physiology and applied biotechnologies;
• Veterinary Public Health and Food Safety;
• Veterinary clinical sciences.
The research areas within the Doctorate are therefore represented by Basic Sciences, Inspection Sciences and Public Health, Clinical Sciences, as well as Bio-pathological Sciences and Sciences and Technologies of Industrial Production. towards innovative research and the development of knowledge within the various scientific disciplinary sectors that compose them such as VET, AGR, BIO and CHIM.
The Curricula present different research and training activities, described below: Morpho-physiology and Applied Biotechnology Curriculum: aimed at the research sector in basic and applied veterinary sciences, experimentation on animal models and the application of functional principles aimed at animal production, reproduction, sporting activities and the therapeutic use of animals. Veterinary Public Health and Food Safety Curriculum: will train specialized figures in the field of infectious and parasitic diseases, spontaneous and non-spontaneous diseases and animal production, in the field of O.A.’s food inspection. and food safety in support of livestock companies. Veterinary Clinical Sciences Curriculum: will train specialized figures in the field of medical, surgical, obstetric and reproductive methodologies, and related national and EU legislative aspects applicable to professional activity.

PhD students will have to acquire mastery in terms of autonomy and problem solving skills in different application contexts.
The course provides basic training, followed by a progressive ability to plan, organize and complete a specific research program resulting in a doctoral thesis inherent to the training program.
The training program for PhD students includes:
a specialized and interdisciplinary training offer characterized by courses of lectures and seminars to be carried out within didactic-training courses specially prepared for each curriculum and in part, common to the three curricula;
additional training activity at national and international schools on issues relating to the topics of individual researches; research activity to be carried out within one of the Department’s research groups on specific issues distinct for the individual curricula;
internships in external research groups, in Italy or abroad;
all the results of the doctoral research will be published in qualified journals;
all doctoral students will have the opportunity to carry out teaching support activities and specific scientific dissemination and orientation activities.

Occupational and professional opportunities envisaged
PhDs will achieve professional qualification for freelance activity, in the National Health Service, in public and private industry, in local bodies, international organizations and cooperation and research agencies,

in sports, rehabilitation, productive and reproductive increase facilities.
The typology of studies, organized on the basis of EU directives (primary role in services offered to the community and the veterinary profession, relations with foreign universities, projects in the field of animal welfare, food safety and veterinary public health and development cooperation in third countries ) offers employment within the community.
The skills developed will guarantee employment and specialist and management consultancy in:
• zootechnical, agro-zootechnical companies, racecourses, riding stables and rehabilitation structures, wildlife hunting, aquaculture systems and accredited animal housing;
• control of the state of welfare and health of animals in farms, shelters and research stables;
• qualitative and quantitative improvement of animal production;
• evaluation of health interventions (medical, surgical, obstetric);
• application of biomedical laboratory techniques and specific biotechnological and functional techniques in the veterinary field;
• management and control of the quality and safety of livestock production;
• food safety and activities of planning, supervision, verification of the quality of O.A. and transformed.

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PhD Coordinator: Prof. Gaetano CARAMORI


telephone: +39 090 221 7375

Department of Biomedical, Dental and Morphological and Functional Sciences

The aim of this PhD course is to provide qualified training on the topics of current international research in the fields of Biotechnology and Medical-Surgical Sciences and in the interdisciplinary areas connected to them. The PhD course is with industrial characterization thanks to the agreements with 2 companies in the Health sector such as L.C. Laboratories Campisi srl and Istituto Oncologico del Mediterraneo (IOM) Spa, these agreements will allow PhD students to attend these facilities in order to carry out part of their research. L.C. Laboratori Campisi srl will finance a PhD scholarship with a specific research project to be carried out at their headquarters. Another position without scholarship will be reserved for a PhD student of IOM Spa, a company engaged in highly qualified activities for a specific research project to be carried out at the IOM company.

Language: The official language of this PhD course is English and both the communications to the PhD students and the didactic activities will be provided in English. The specific linguistic abilities of the PhD students will be evaluated during the initial selection and the annual report of their activities must be in the language English. Finally, their skills will be further implemented by promoting research periods in foreign institutions.

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