The Social Sciences Winter School in South Asia (SSWS) is a network of international collaborative training projects across South Asia. It has been designed as a programme of intensive and multidisciplinary training workshops addressing theoretical and methodological issues in social sciences research. These events provide each and everyone with the opportunity of sharing experiences and research ideas. A transversal theme in the field of human and social sciences is chosen to serve as a guiding thread for the training.


This Winter School has four main objectives:

  • To create a highly efficient tool in research capacity-building;
  • Promote the transfer of skills and know-how between partners;
  • To strengthen the cooperation in research, through the creation of an academic network of researchers working on South Asia;
  • To consolidate a community of young scholars.

Tangible results and outcomes are provided:

  • Development of a website in English (with digital resources);
  • Validation through delivery of certificates upon completion of the training;
  • Editing and dissemination of a scientific, pedagogical and technical booklet.


The training runs through five consecutive days and is articulated around two poles: the plenary sessions and the methodological workshops, as detailed below:

  • The plenary sessions: for one day there will be four to six talks, presented by experienced researchers from both Europe and South Asian countries. The aim is to present the state-of-the-art, and overview of the theoretical and methodological issues on a particular research topic.
  • The methodological workshops: for the following three full days, three workshops à la carte for around 40 to 50 trainees are devoted to tutorials. It will discuss theoretical models, text analysis, analytical tools, survey methods, data collection and analysis, etc.
  • Project/knowledge restitution: the training ends with a half-day of knowledge restitution, under the form of a simulated research project designed by each group and putting to practice what they have learnt, and the delivery of certificates to participants.

A theme is chosen every year as a guideline throughout the training workshop. Several cross-cutting themes and sub-topics in the field of social sciences are then identified: environmental health (emerging diseases, health governance, public policies), social and spatial mobility (migrations, social networks, globalization),  vulnerabilities (social, economic, and ecological), inequalities and social change, gender studies, urban studies, heritage, communities and sustainability.


The team of trainers are always multidisciplinary and international, composed according to the chosen theme, while taking into account the availability of local human resources.

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