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The Children and Social Justice Lake Como Spring School will offer an international and interdisciplinary training programme for Ph.D. students with the aim to support and enhance knowledge exchange opportunities and methodological discussion on the contribution of educational research to the debate on children and social justice.

Far from having been realized, in our risky and unstable world what can be called a just society should allow everyone – children and young people included – to actually do and be what they potentially could do and be. Certainly, the cultura), scientific, and social investment in childhood that characterized the last century (to the point of making it known as ‘the century of the child’) prepared the path to the important goal of the UNCRC. However, the increasing social inequality and the persisting phenomena of violence or marginalization, of which too many children are stili victims, show how the effective protection of childhood has evolved in uneven way, leading to a substantial failure and unfair treatments.

The gap between what is said within the international debate on the institutional leve) and the current conditions children and young people live remains too avide: the formai recognition of rights is not enough to guarantee their rea) enjoyment. The objectives of the Agenda 2030 for the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, instead, underlie the rea) possibilities of )ife of citizens, along with their formai rights.

Based on the above-mentioned phenomena, educational research is facing severa) dilemmas, both with regard to connected fields of study (i.e. theories on social justice and the role of education, educational systems and teachers training approaches, children participation, children protection systems…), and with regard to the methodological aspects (i.e. ethical dimensions, strategies for public engagement, children rights-based approach of research, children participation in educational research…).

The Lake Como Spring School will have a strong interdisciplinary background, opening to severa) disciplinary contributions on the topic (i.e. pedagogy, psychology, anthropology, philosophy….). The proposal aims at acting in opening a discussion on the tasks of education for social justice.

AIMS AND OBJECTIVES

  • To enhance knowledge and research competences on the main topic of the springschool;
  • to develop networking opportunities for both Phd students, researchers, and facultystaff of the universities involved;
  • to encourage partnership in joint research projects as well as co-authorship andjoint publications.

METHODS

The experience of the Lake Como Spring School will see participants divided into groups with the goal to write a research proposal responding to a cali provided at the beginning of the Lake Como Spring School. The Lake Como Spring School is organized in activities and lectures that aim to support the participants in the performance of the task through:

  • introduction of Lake Como Spring School themes;
  • learning about the main methodologies used to investigate the themes;
  • drafting the proposal;
  • submission of the proposal (which will receive final feedback by the Scientific Committee of the Lake Como Spring School).

The groups are a fundamental part of the Lake Como Spring School’s structure. They will be formed by the organizing committee (in order to be heterogeneous for disciplines, skills, and languages), and will be provided with reference material and a virtual meeting space accessibile before the beginning of the Lake Como Spring School.

THEMES

  1. The role of children within social justice theories: what role does childhood play inthe main theories of Social Justice, and what reflections are needed to rethink it?
  2. Children education and Social Justice: which possible connections are therebetween the education of minors and Social Justice? How does education promote thedevelopment of a more just society? Which kind of education to Social Justice?
  3. Focus on the educational contexts for children: which educational research?
  4. Sustainability, Education and Social Justice: what spaces for children?