• About SNS

    The Scuola Normale Superiore is a public institute for higher education that in its two centuries of life has earned itself a special place, both in Italy and abroad, a place characterised by merit, talent and scientific rigour.  Two types of course are available: the undergraduate course and the PhD course.The teaching activity is distributed among three academic structures: the Faculty of Humanities, the Faculty of Mathematical and Natural Sciences, placed in Pisa, and the Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences, located in Palazzo Strozzi in Florence. 

  • Admission

    The evaluation for entrance to the first year of the undergraduate course does not include the high school leaving certificate, and the bachelor's degree is not taken into consideration in the entrance examination for the fourth year course. For each PhD course, candidates’ level of competence, talent, motivations and aptitudes to scientific research will be assessed on the basis of their qualifications and research project and an interview.

  • Academics

    The Scuola Normale Superiore offers two types of course: the undergraduate course, leading to first and second level university degrees, and the PhD course, the international equivalent of the Italian Dottorato di ricerca.The teaching and research activity is distributed among three academic structures: the Faculty of Humanities, the Faculty of Mathematical and Natural Sciences, and the Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences.The first two academic structures, housed at the Pisa site, organize courses for both the  undergraduate course and the PhD course. The Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences, situated in Palazzo Strozzi in Florence, deals only with the PhD course.

  • Research

    A highly qualifying feature of the Normale way is the strong link between teaching and research that is a characteristic of both the undergraduate and the graduate programmes of the Scuola. The research structures of the two Faculties welcome students with a relevant study interest, enabling them to collaborate in a mature way with the activities of the researchers.

  • International

    The Scuola Normale is an institute of a decidedly international nature. Examinations for admission to the undergraduate degree course and for the PhD course are open to all citizens worldwide. A certain number of places on the PhD course are reserved for students from other countries. During the pre laurea and  post lauream teaching courses, study and research programmes are made available at overseas universities and research centres with which the Scuola forms an intense network of collaboration.  The doctorate course in particular is taught in a veritable graduate school in line with the highest international standards. 

Postdoc Fellow
Tel. +39 055 2673 349

Palazzo Strozzi

Istituto di Scienze Umane e Sociali
Piazza degli Strozzi, 1
50123, FIRENZE

Lara Monticelli is a post-doctoral research fellow at Scuola Normale Superiore (SNS) – Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences in Florence (Italy).

Since arriving at SNS in February 2015, Dr. Monticelli has been working together with Prof. Giliberto Capano on a comparative project about reforms in the governance of secondary level education in Europe.

Prior to joining SNS, she completed a PhD in Economic Sociology (July, 2014). Her thesis explored the occupational trajectories of Italian graduates and delineated the extent to which atypical contracts acted as stepping-stones into the labour market, or as traps, using sequence analysis.

During her M.Sc. in Economics and Social Sciences (Bocconi University, Milan) she was employed as a research fellow on two EU funded projects - YOUNEX (Youth, Unemployment and Social Exclusion, http://www.younex.unige.ch) and LOCALISE (Local Worlds of Social Cohesion - http://www.localise-research.eu) – focusing in particular on the different modes of political participation deployed by precarious workers in Europe. She also spent time as a visiting researcher (2013) at the Centre for Organizational Research (SCORE) at the University of Stockholm.

As side projects she is involved in producing a documentary film about art collectives and political street art on the island of Java (Indonesia), and is co-organising a Mini Conference at the Annual Society for the Advancement of Socio-Economics (SASE) titled ‘Re-Embedding the Social: New Modes of Organization, Critical Consumption and Alternative Lifestyles’. It will be held at the University of California, Berkeley, in June 2016. 

As a freelance researcher and activist, Lara has collaborated on two research projects examining the history of leftist associations in Italy and their role in the production of shared cultural and political values among young people.

Please visit her personal web page on Academia.edu for more details.

Research Interests

Political sociology; Non-conventional and non-institutionalized political participation; Sociology of labour markets and work; Social policy; Comparative and mixed methods; Visual methods. 


  • Book 'I circoli giovanili ARCI nella provincia di Mantova: cultura, socialità, volontariato' (2012) with M. Bassoli and C. Pincella, Rome: Franco Angeli.
  • Paper 'Laureati, precari e politicamente attivi. L’impatto del lavoro e della scuola sulle forme della partecipazione' (2012) with M. Bassoli, in ‘La ricerca sociologica e i temi del lavoro. Giovani ricercatori a confronto’, Sociologia del Lavoro, Special Issue on Italian labour market, Rome: Franco Angeli.
  • Book chapter (forthcoming 2016):‘In a word that does not belong to me. Recounting unemployment experiences of contemporary Italian youth’ with S. Baglioni and M. Bassoli in ‘Jobless Youth. Marginalization, social relations and resilience’ edited by C. Lahusen and M. Giugni, London: Palgrave McMillan.

Under review or submitted

  • What about the welfare state? The political participation of precarious youth in the age of grievances’ (2015) with M. Bassoli.
  • ‘Job Precariousness and types of political citizens amongst European youth’ (2015), with M. Bassoli.
  • Precarious voices: precarious workers and political participation in the city of Turin’ (2015) with M. Bassoli.
  • Workers’ well-being as a multidimensional concept. A comparative analysis’ (2015), with S. Baglioni. In preparation for forthcoming special issue ‘Youth Unemployment, Precarity and Well-Being in Europe’ (2016) edited by M. Giugni and J. Lorenzini on International Journal of Wellbeing (IJW).
  • ‘Different worlds, same tensions? Conceptualizing the implementation of individualized activation policies’ (2015) with P. R. Graziano, D. Rice and V. Fuentes.
  • Climbers or prisoners of the labour market? A study on Italian graduates’ occupational trajectories using Sequence Analysis’ (2015) with R. Piccarreta.