Master of Advanced Studies in

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Certificate of Advanced Studies in Migration and Diversity

 CAS Migration and Diversity   CAS Migration and Diversity     


The Certificate of Advanced Studies in Migration and Diversity offers you the knowledge to understand and analyze changes in social structures and cultural processes due to migration.

Migration streams to Switzerland, Europe and worldwide are affecting all aspects of social life (public institutions, policy-making, businesses, media, health services, religion and ethics, gender and family). The resulting diversification offers enrichment and creates challenges. Considering the importance of migration and the growing issues they are facing in the management of all what comes to this phenomenon, a specific need of competences and tools to deal with these questions is emerging clearly.



You will get the practical and scientific knowledge on migration best-practices.

Understand the global and local process and strategies that foster integration of migrants;

Comprehend and analyze intercultural interactions in interpersonal, social, organizational, policies and media environments. 

Referring to many examples and in concrete cases, the focus of the teaching is primarily in the best practices.



Professionals working or desiring to work with migration and integration, whether it be in the public, non-governmental or private organizations in a local or global dimension.


Intercultural Communication Education


Our approach emphasizes active engagement and participation as well as application to specific cases. You will work in groups on real-life intercultural communication problems to exchange views and understand differences in perspectives, apply theoretical knowledge to practice, and develop creative solutions. We encourage you to work outside of the box and develop deep insight. 


Intercultural Communication Education


You will have modules covering the structural and cultural aspects of migration and integration including political participation, social mobility and market inequality, inclusion and belonging, governance of international migration, prejudice and stereotyping, refugee policies, processes, and social needs.


Modules 1&2 | 12 - 17 November, 2018
Lugano, Switzerland

Migration as a Challenge to Democracy

In five units, we introduce participants to relevant social theory, present cutting-edge research findings, and discuss the applications and implications in various hands-on exercises. The module begins with how humans perceive the world and how immigration plays an important role in understanding and classifying the everyday. We then explore the consequences of this with regard to political representation, exclusion, the media, and right-wing populism to underline how migration poses a challenge to democracy.

Policies and Processes of Integration in Society

This module addresses macro (i.e. society) meso (i.e. community) and micro (i.e. individual and family) processes of integration. In order to set the scenery of such processes, the module begins by studying diversity of migrant population and integration policies in Europe; this allows locating the Swiss experience in the broader European picture. Moreover, it outlines the main theoretical approaches to integration in the scientific literature in order to provide a common background for the study of integration processes. More generally, the module shows the dynamic of ethnic boundaries at play in integration processes. Finally, the module tackles the issue of the interplay between processes of integration and migrants’ transnational practices.



Modules 3&4 | 21 - 26 January, 2019
Beirut, Lebanon

Contemporary Governance of International Migration

The first Unit is devoted to the global framework and initiatives in the governance of migration as emerging at the end of the millennium in the aftermath of the Berne Initiative launched to develop an international policy framework on migration. In this context, the EU free movement of persons will be addressed an inspiring practice, recently challenged. The following unit focuses on the international framework of refugee and IDP protection and its institutions, with a focus on recent developments in Switzerland, the Middle East and Europe. The next section 3 looks at the recent shift in research from a policy oriented to a more migrant informed perspective of decision making in migration, which gives new insights into the migration processes. Implications of border controls, visa policies and cross border services are analysed in unit 4 as a particularly sensitive issue of smuggling and human trafficking, which are often on purpose confused in public debates. The underlying processes highlight the particular vulnerability of various categories of migrants devoid of legal, financial and human resources (indigent refugees or other migrants, women, unaccompanied minors, etc.). Therefore, unit 5 investigates the underlying factors and structures that create unequal power relations and dependency, how migration management regimes of control and enforcement are practiced and how they shape individual irregular migrants’ experiences in diverse ways. On the side of policy responses, the so-called durable solutions – local integration, return, resettlement – are addressed with particular interest being paid to the reactivation of resettlement regimes in Switzerland and EU countries (unit 6). We also look at the relocation of refugees in Greece and Italy to other EU countries. Finally, we focus on the sub-state level and show the implications migration has on the regional and local level (unit 7). In particular, we analyse the challenges faced by minority regions, where new diversity stemming from migration encounters historical linguistic, religious and cultural diversity.

Sustainability, Change, and Migration

The role of culture and context in shaping health meanings, values and practices, and the linkages of these practices to health and wellbeing in migration and refugee contexts.



Modules 5&6 | 25 - 30 March, 2019
Lugano, Switzerland

Multiculturalism and Diversity

The course aims to present and discuss the sociological and political philosophy issues related to multiculturalism. It starts from an apparently distant phenomenon, but which weighs heavily on these stakes, the rise of individualism and personal subjectivity in contemporary societies. It situates the issue in what is the major global change, globalization, and will invite the participants to "think global."

Psychology of Prejudice and Stereotyping

Psychology offers a nuanced understanding of the link between the individual, emotion, cognition, and culture. How are the "cultural" dimensions of human behavior taken into account in psychology? What is the place of culture in this discipline? What can be the contributions of psychology to the understanding of intercultural communication? The theoretical contributions will be brought through numerous examples and activities so that the participants can establish links with their practices and concerns and develop a "psychosocial and cultural" approach to intercultural communication.



Certificate of Advanced Studies - CAS (15 ECTS)

Early Bird Fee until June 10 - CHF 6'100

After June 10 - CHF 6'500

Deadline for application - September 10



USI Università della Svizzera italiana is one of 12 universities under the Swiss university system, coordinated by the Rectors’ Conference of the Swiss Universities (swissuniversitites). swissuniversities represents all 12 Swiss universities and maintains relationships with other accredited universities outside Switzerland. As a recognized university that is part of the public system, the degree-granting body of the MIC is USI Università della Svizzera italiana.

To ensure international recognition, in 2002 USI became the first Swiss university to adopt the Bologna Reform and the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS). The Bologna Declaration mandates that all taught courses and coursework are to be quantified in ECTS points. The ECTS guarantees that credits are wholly compatible and transferable within and across the broader European university system.

The certificate awarded is a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Migration and Diversity (15 ECTS) from Università della Svizzera italiana, Faculty of Communication Sciences.