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Presentation of the Jean Monnet Centre

Welcome to the Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence of the University of Padua

Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence: “Intercultural dialogue, Human Rights and Multi-level Governance” (2009-2012)


The Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence at the University of Padua was launched in September 2000 and is located at the Interdepartmental Centre on Human Rights and the Rights of Peoples of the University of Padua. It was reaffirmed in the summer of 2009 when the University was one of the few institutions to have the title and funding re-awarded. The Centre hosts the Jean Monnet Chair ad honour held by Professor Antonio Papisca, the Jean Monnet Chair on Globalisation and Inclusiveness in the European Union, held by Prof. Dr. Léonce Bekemans, the Jean Monnet Chair on European Union Political System, held by Prof. Marco Mascia and the Jean Monnet Module on Sport and Human Rights in European Union Law held by Prof. Jacopo Tognon

The professors of the Jean Monnet Chairs of the JM Centre of Excellence of Padua participate with papers in the conferences of ECSA-World, the European Commission as wells as in the Ateliers of the Committee of the Regions on the subject of multi-level governance.

The Centre is directed by Prof. Mascia; Prof. Bekemans is its academic coordinator.


Aware of the Commission’s broad political priorities of connecting Europe to the citizens, increasing the visibility of the European Union in the world and, in particular, pursuing applied reflections on intercultural dialogue, the University of Padua - in particular the Faculty of Political Science and the Interdepartmental Centre on Human Rights and the Rights of Peoples has further consolidated the European and international profile of its existing curriculum of teaching and research activities by setting up a Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence on Intercultural Dialogue, Human Rights and Multi-level Governance, focused on capacity building and curriculum development.
Recent developments and events in Europe and the world have intensified the hitherto debate on cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue. In the framework of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights the policy debate on dialogue of cultures and peoples has gained a new momentum and necessitates an extended and deepened analysis of the relation between intercultural dialogue and human rights within a European and global perspective.

Content and Structure

Its content and structure is based on the “acquis” gained from past experience and participation in various Jean Monnet activities as well as from its engagement in lifelong learning programmes in the territory of north east Italy and its existing network of cooperation. It benefits from the international networking of 3 existing Jean Monnet Chairs and a pluridisciplinary staff, able to relate to the multidisciplinary and multidimensional programme of the Centre of Excellence. Building on the action-oriented interuniversity JM research project: (2006/2007) on “The role of intercultural dialogue in the development of a new, plural and democratic citizenship” and the experience of the current Jean Monnet chair on “Globalisation, Intercultural dialogue and Inclusiveness in the EU” (2007-2012), the Centre further focuses its activities on strengthening cooperation and networking with the civil society, the regional authorities and other Jean Monnet Centres and Chairs active in the field of intercultural dialogue, human rights and multi-level governance.

Overview activities

The activities cover new teaching modules, a number of action-oriented events focussing on the creation of a thematic network with JM chairs and centres, a serious of lectures by invited experts on policy-related topics and a research programme especially devoted to foster curriculum development activities related to “intercultural dialogue and Multi-level governance”. The deliverables rang from teaching materials, yearly reports, special numbers in the “Pace Diritti Umani/Peace Human Rights” periodical and a final publication.
The activities’ major focus is on a strengthened visibility and openness to communicate, innovate and explore in interaction with a broad public, local and regional authorities, and the civil society outside the university in the perspective of capacity building and good practices.

Teaching Activities

  • Territorial dialogue: EGTC and territorial cooperation for intercultural dialogue and social cohesion (M. Mascia)
  • Intercultural and interreligious dialogue (L. Bekemans)
  • Immigration and trafficking : a human rights perspective (P. Degani)
  • Intercultural dialogue and multilevel governance: the case of city diplomacy (A. Papisca)
  • Sport for intercultural dialogue and inclusion (J. Tognon)

Thematic Network Activities: “Intercultural Dialogue and Multi-level Governance in Europe”

  • Multi-level Governance of intercultural dialogue, Padua 23-24 March 2010
  • Civil society participation in intercultural dialogue
  • Education to intercultural dialogue

Jean Monnet lectures

  • Luc Van den Brande, president Committee of the Regions of the EU, “Inclusive Regions and Inclusive Cities in Intercultural dialogue”, Padua 11/3/2008 
  • Luc Van den Brande, president Committee of the Regions of the EU, QA political European Union is built on values, inclusive governance and partnership with its regions and cities”, Padua 17/3/2009
  • Paul Breyne, Governor, West Flanders, Belgium: “The practice of territorial dialogue in Europe: the view of a practioner”, Padua 22/3/2010
  • Luc Van Den Brande, former president Committee of the Regions of the EU: “Local governance of intercultural dialogue: prospects for 2020”, Padua 23/3/2010


The impact envisaged is

  • to make students responsible European citizens equipped with a human rights’ perspective and the necessary tools, values and skills to face the complexities of rapidly changing societies,
  • to strengthen synergies between the JM Chairs, the existing courses and modules in perspective of the mainstreaming of teaching, training and research in European integration
  • To widen its scope to citizens in a lifelong learning perspective and stimulate network participation of forces external to the university such as civil society organisations, schools, local governments, trade unions, religious institutions.

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