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Programme in SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT (classe LM-81)

Type of ProgrammeMaster Degree
Academic year2016/2017
Type of degree awardedDottore magistrale
Active curricula
Length of the programme2 years
ECTS credits required for admission180
Activated years1st year, 2nd year
Entry requirements
Admission without debts from the following Bachelor's Degrees

Introductory overview

The Faculty of Law was established in 1924 and 2004 marked its 80th year of activity. The three departments of the Faculty are housed in the old “Ca’ Granda” (the big house), a remarkable monumental hospital complex commissioned by Francesco Sforza and his wife Bianca Maria Visconti in 1456 in order to celebrate the conquest of the dukedom of Milan. This historic building, a well-known example of 15th century architecture from Lombardy, is located in the very heart of the city center and has been assigned to the Law Faculty immediately after the Second World War.
Over the years, the Faculty has maintained its initial prestige thanks to the work of many great Masters who also helped to train a large part of the current teaching staff, which is composed of 73 full professors, 24 associate professors and approximately 100 assistant professors.
The Faculty has always devoted particular attention to international relations, with teaching staff and the most brilliant students constantly collabourating in research projects and exchange programs with prestigious foreign universities. Ours is the only Italian Faculty of Law to be a member of LERU, The League of European Research Universities (LERU), an association of twenty-one leading research-intensive universities, that share the values of high-quality teaching within an environment of internationally competitive research. Furthermore, over the years, the Faculty entered into thirty-seven agreements with other European Universities to foster students’ mobility (lifelong learning program/LLP-Erasmus). It has signed several international agreements with prestigious foreign universities all over the world to enhance academic collabouration, faculty and students exchanges and other mutually beneficial scientific and educational objectives, internationalization objectives staff exchange program as well as joint research programs such as (among others) with Notre Dame du Lac, Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Universidade Federal Fluminense (Niterķi, Brasil), Xiamen (China), East China University of Political Science and Law (Shanghai, China), Ewha Womans University (Seoul, Republic of Korea) School of Law, Cornell University. The Faculty also has a joint double degree program in Law with the Faculty of Law of the University of Toulouse.
The Faculty organizes, in partnerships with other foreign Universities, summer schools abroad (respectively in China and Portugal) on Climate Change and Environmental Protection and Intellectual Property Rights in China, and Transnational Dispute Resolution. It trains its law students’ teams to participate in the renowned Williem C. v. International Commercial Arbitration Moot that takes place in Vienna and in the ICC International Commercial Mediation Competition in Paris.
The Faculty offers a wide range of courses organized around three main cycles of study, in line with the European model outlined by the Bologna Process: a first cycle (three-year bachelor’s program) in Legal Science; a single-cycle degree (Corso di laurea magistrale a ciclo unico – single-cycle, five- year degree program) in Law; and a third cycle (Doctorate-PhD in National and International Legal Studies).
For the academic year 2013-14, the Faculty offers 21 academic courses taught entirely in English and designed for international students, on Comparative Labour Law; European Labour Law; Competition Law and Economics; Economics of Taxation; Financial Markets and Institutions; Food Law; Gender Justice; International Business Law and Dispute Settlement Mechanisms; International Corporate Governance; International Criminal Law; International Environmental Law and Sustainable Development; International Insolvency Law; International Investment Law and Dispute Settlement; International Refugee and Human Rights Law; Introduction to Italian Law; International Transport Law; Law and Ontology; Negotiation and Alternative Dispute Resolution; Sociology of Human Rights.

For the academic year 2015-16, the Faculty intends to offer a new second cycle of study consisting in a LL.M in Sustainable Development (a two year Graduate Program/laurea magistrale), taught entirely in English.

Educational and learning aims

The LL.M. in Sustainable Development at the University of Milan is the first European Graduate Programme aiming at improving the legal skills necessary to better grasp the three interconnected dimensions (economic, social and environmental) of sustainable development. It will allow students to obtain in-depth interdisciplinary academic training to specialise in key issues agreed upon by the International Community during the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNSD or “Rio post-2015 agenda”).

The LL.M. Programme offers an integrative curriculum to improve the synergies necessary to develop actions aimed at achieving a long-term improvement of the quality of life through the creation of sustainable legal strategies. The two year LL.M. Programme allows students to obtain advanced interdisciplinary training and knowledge of both local, international and transnational trends and strategies for sustainable development. The Programme’s unusually rich course offerings include advanced courses in different areas, such as:
• International Law, European Union Law, Environmental Law, Administrative Law, Constitutional Law, Public Health, (International) Criminal Law, Civil Procedure, Philosophy of Law, Civil Law, Comparative Law, Commercial Law, Competition Law, Labour Law, Transport Law, Tax Law.

As well as course offerings in relevant economic and sociological disciplines, such as:
• Sociology, Geo-political Geography, Economics, Economy Policy, Economic History.

Skills and competence

The LL.M. in Sustainable Development has two main objectives: to upgrade knowledge and skills in the field of the three dimensions of sustainable development and to provide a graduate education and training aimed at a broad and dynamic knowledge rather than a narrow-band specialization in specific issues. What the professional market demands is a law graduate with a comphrensive background.

The LL.M Programme will train new legal experts able to support the processes by which laws and regulations are initiated, prepared, produced, enacted, and effectively publicized. As to the public sector, in particular, the objective consists in training jurists able to elabourate, orientate and assess the Public Administration’s policies on the basis of the international best practices in the field of human and labour rights and environmental protection, in light of the economic, social and environmental dimensions and, in accordance with a cost-benefit rationale. As regards to the Private Sector, the program aims to train new corporate jurists and economic operators ethically oriented, able to overcome the narrow logic of profit maximization. This requires a change of values and of the economic system’s foundations, in favor of a new ethics of market.

A mix of talents is necessary to address the problems posed by the goals of sustainable development: this includes not only a deeper knowledge in a variety of disciplinary areas, but also the ability to make monitoring, establishing follow-up mechanisms and impact evaluations of various projects and/or legal and judicial reforms in order to assure that they will result in substantial attitudinal and behavioral changes in state officials, public administrators, civil society, private sector firms. The ultimate goal of the LL.M. Programme is to educate an innovative generation of legal professionists with the skills and abilities to enhance the rule of law, good governance and sustainable development law policies oriented to environmental and human rights protection.

In this regard, the LL.M. Programme aims at implementing the UNECE (United Nations Economic Commission for Europe) strategy for education for sustainable development adopted by the High-level meeting of Environment and Education Ministries, in Vilnius, 17-18 March 2005, as implemented by the European Council in 2006. In perspective, the Programme also aims to contribute to the European Higher Education System by offering to the students the possibility to continue their postgraduate education in a PHD Program specifically dedicated to Sustainable Development, able to compete at international level as a reference center for research and professional training in this field.


The LL.M. in Sustainable Development aims at training a new type of legal experts, with a comprehensive background in the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development. Our graduates will have the necessary skills to elaborate, support and assess sustainable legal and economic policies and strategies both in the Public and Private Sectors.
With regards to the Public Sector, the programme aims at training legal experts who are able to integrate social, economic and environmental concerns in the central and local Public Administration’s policies in key areas such as: telecommunication, new technologies, water, sanitation, health, electric power and gas, transportation, infrastructure, agriculture, green public procurement, public tender offer.
With regards to the Private Sector, the programme aims at training corporate legal experts and economic operators who are ethically oriented and able to play a key role in monitoring, tracking, aligning and integrating social and environmental impacts in the business sector, in order to help companies to meet their corporate responsibility and sustainability goals.
Specifically, the program aims at training the following professionals:
- Environmental and sustainability managers
- Experts in: managing Public Administration, control of Public Administration, managing and controlling private companies, human resources, work organization, financial activities, market analysis, company law, state company law, economic systems.