Convening 20 May 2019 Venice (Italy) Summer School Application
Sources of Democracy: Citizenship, Social Cohesion and Ethical Values

The Venice Summer School organized by Reset Dialogues on Civilizations in collaboration with the Mominoun Foundation, the Giorgio Cini Foundation and under the patronage of Ca’ Foscari University of Venice will focus on the liberal democratic systems that rose to preeminence in the postwar international order that are uniformly enveloped in crises of doubt and self-confidence. Under pressure from extremist and nationalist movements, political institutions reveal unseen weaknesses that provoke widespread fears of democratic decline. The products and purveyors of 19th and 20th century trends towards more liberalism and more democracy seem themselves to be insufficiently grounded in liberal values.

The lack of resilience and social cohesion to resist the illiberal trend finds resonance in the old paradox of philosopher Ernst-Wolfgang Böckenförde: “The liberal state lives on premises that it cannot itself guarantee […] without renouncing its liberalism.” The surprising rise of nationalism, populism, illiberal extremism and the profound crisis of Western democracy all confirm the need to examine these “premises”, i.e. the moral, cultural and educational resources that are taken for granted. The questions that face societies seeking to cultivate and reproduce them are timeless and recurrent: Has individualism endangered communitarian and religious allegiances as much as it has done for the relative importance of national boundaries? Has it undermined the social capital and civic fabric that ground societies? Or is the illiberal trend a temporary regression, a momentary lapse in the long and winding history of democratic development? What insight do we gain on current political illiberal trends from other regional contexts that have been more reluctant to sacrifice communitarian values (South America, Arab and Muslim world, Asia)?

Our Summer School will analyze these vital questions in Western and non-Western contexts, bringing a comparative approach to examine the attractive power of democracy on a global scale.

Lecture Topics:

  1. Citizenship and Sources of Democracy
  2. Social Capital and Democracy
  3. Nationalism and Liberalism
  4. Democracy and Religious Pluralism
  5. The Liberalism-Communitarianism Debate
  6. Confucianism and Democracy in China
  7. Communitarianism and Democracy in India
  8. The Arab Spring and the Future of Democracy in the Middle East

Workshop Topics:

  1. Religion and Social Cohesion
  2. Islamic Ethics and Democracy
  3. Nationalism and Democracy

All enrolled students are going to be assigned to one of the three workshops.

In the workshops, students discuss and elaborate on one specific issue of the overall topic and prepare a short preparation at the Reset DOC Seminars on Saturday, May 25.


Presentation during the Reset DOC Seminars and attendance (60%); final paper to be submitted three weeks after the end of the summer school (40%).

University Credits:

Students will work for a total of 150 hours (6 ECTS), according to the Bologna Process for Higher Education. Students will gain a certificate of participation after the successful completion of the Summer School.

Please, see the application details here below.

Summer School Faculty and Seminars Speakers:

Tahir Abbas • Fiona Adamson • Mohamed Al-Ani • Giuliano Amato • Albena Azmanova • Giulio Azzolini • Karen Barkey • Daniel A. Bell • Sheri Berman • Giancarlo Bosetti • Marina Calloni • José Casanova • Paolo Costa  • Patrick Deneen • Jon Elster • Alessandro Ferrara Pasquale FerraraPatrizio FondiPasquale Gagliardi • Seán Golden • Andrea Graziosi • Micheline Ishay  • Mohsen Kadivar  • Volker Kaul • Mounir KchaouDilek Kurban • Jonathan Laurence • Tiziana Lippiello • Alan Patten • David Rasmussen • Abdel Hussain Shaban • Mona Siddiqui • Marcella Simoni Yael Tamir • Francesca Tarocco • Pei Wang • Michel Wieviorka and others

SUMMER SCHOOL ‘19 | Ca’ Foscari University of Venice

20 – 25 May 2019


  1. Students, young scholars and recent graduates in the field of humanities and social sciences are welcome to participate to the ResetDOC International Summer School 2019 that will take place in Venice from the 20th to the 25th of May 2019.  
  2. Have a good working knowledge of English, knowledge of other languages is considered a plus but not indispensable.



It is possible to apply for participating in the ResetDOC SUMMER SCHOOL 2019 (20-25 May) WITH GRANTS or WITHOUT GRANTS.


In order to register to the ResetDOC Summer School with grants request, please click here, complete the form and send your application by March 27, 2019. Successful applicants will be contacted no later than March 30, 2019.

Application requirements:

  1. Curriculum Vitae.
  2. A Letter of Motivation, stating why you want to take part in the Summer School and why is this relevant to your studies and/or working field. 2,000 characters max.
  3. A personal ID (Passport or National Identity Document).
  4. Reference names are appreciated but not indispensable.

GRANTS for the Summer School:

Budget is limited. Small grants are addressed to students/scholars depending on their cv, motivation letter, travel distance from Venice, financial status.

The financial support includes also the local boat-transport tickets (transport from the Airport to the city and vice-versa is not included) as well as lunch meals during the whole period of the Summer School.

In order to receive the GRANT, attendance to all lessons and workshops of the Summer School, and attendance for the whole duration of the Seminar is mandatory.

The GRANT will be delivered in cash on Saturday the 25th of May.


In order to register to the ResetDOC Summer School without grants request, please click here, complete the form and send your application by March 27, 2019. Accepted applicants will be contacted before and no later than 30 March 2019.

Application requirements:

  1. Curriculum Vitae.
  2. A personal ID (Passport or National Identity Document).
  3. Reference names are appreciated but not indispensable.

Social Event: It is possible that an informal closing event for students and speakers will be organized on the 25th afternoon. The participation of all students would be highly appreciated.


The list of speakers may be subject to change. Participants will receive the final program of the Summer School.




You may find useful the official Venice transport map here:

Travel and Accommodation: participants are responsible for their own travel and accommodation expenses. Students must arrange their accommodation personally.

A room near Santa Lucia Train Station may be a suitable option since you can reach Ca’ Foscari University – Ca’ Dolfin in 15 minutes by walking. You can easily reach San Giorgio Island as well with vaporetto line n°2 in 45 minutes from Ferrovia Stop (in front of Santa Lucia train station).

Also a room near “Zattere” vaporetto stop may be a good option since you can reach Ca’ Foscari University (Aula Morelli, Palazzo Malcanton Marcorà, Dorsoduro 3484/D, Calle Contarini, 30123 Venezia) in 15 minutes by walking and San Giorgio Island with vaporetto line n°2 in 10 minutes.

Another option can be a room in Mestre, that is cheaper than a room on the main Island, from where you can reach Ca Foscari University in 30 minutes with the bus T2.

Here a list of suitable accommodations:

Hotel Andria (Mestre)

Legrenzi Rooms (Mestre)

B&B outlet sweet Venice (Mestre)

B&B romantica Venezia (Mestre)

Hotel San Geremia (near Ferrovia stop, Santa Lucia Train Station – vaporetto line n°2)

Hotel Adriatico (near Ferrovia stop, Santa Lucia Train Station – vaporetto line n°2)

Hotel Dolomiti (near Ferrovia stop, Santa Lucia Train Station – vaporetto line n°2)

Hotel Pensione Seguso (near Zattere Stop – vaporetto line n°2)

For any further information please write to Marco Lucidi:






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