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Einaudi Dissertation Proposal Development Program

Develop your dissertation on global issues with a toolkit of resources. Over the course of the year, you’ll participate in seminars, workshops, and mentoring sessions and receive up to $5,000 for summer research.  

The Einaudi Dissertation Proposal Development Program supports 12 PhD students annually. Candidates’ research projects must focus on global issues, but the proposed research setting may be international or domestic.  


Please watch for news about the 2021 cycle. 


Up to $5,000 for summer research. 


PhD students are eligible. You must fall into one of these categories: 

  • Second- or third-year student 

  • First-year PhD student who has completed a master’s degree 
  • Fourth-year student who has not yet undertaken dissertation research 

Theme 2020: The Art and Politics of Migration

The theme dovetails with Cornell's Global Grand Challenge on Migrations: Researching, Teaching, and Building for a World on the Move. We invite you to think creatively and expansively about the diverse subjects related to migration and its far-reaching impacts as you develop your dissertation project.  

Flock of birds in the sunset

Contemporary politics are increasingly animated by struggles over who can live in which places and under what conditions. We are in a world on the move, where migration is not always voluntary. Threats to food supplies and ecosystem health, for example, have led to unprecedented movements of flora and fauna on our planet. Similarly, human migration may be forced by political crises. These movements exist within an interconnected web of geography, history, and political and social contexts. This program aims to interrogate the art and politics of human and non-human migrations across a range of spaces and historical moments.  

We are motivated by a series of questions: 

  • How are migration patterns informed by histories of colonialism, racial hierarchy, patriarchy, and material exploitation? 
  • What are the linkages between migration and ongoing urbanization? 
  • Urbanization, though dominant, has not displaced migration to rural areas. What factors and conditions create a counter-movement away from urban centers? 
  • How are rural communities transformed by migration? 
  • How do political crises influence patterns of migration for humans, plants, and animals? 
  • How does the idea of "home" play a role in migration, and what rights do living beings have to return to one? 
  • Fundamentally, how do migrants interpret their own socio-spatial trajectories? 
  • How is migration affected by climate change? 
  • What factors condition how migrating humans, fauna, or flora are received in a new region?