The “Riccardo Massa” Department of Human Sciences for Education commenced functioning in January 1999 as the Department of Educational Epistemology and Hermeneutics. It was set up at the initiative of a group of teaching and research staff with backgrounds in education, history, philosophy and the human and natural sciences, who wished to promote the interdisciplinary study of educational processes.
The Department displayed a strongly interdisciplinary focus from the outset, and the number of its academic staff, and consequently the range of disciplines represented within it, expanded rapidly. Thus, in 2005 it was given its current title, which more clearly reflects the plurality of research perspectives that it embraces.
The new title also acknowledges educationalist Riccardo Massa’s key contribution to the Department’s creation, as well as bearing tribute to his work as a teacher and scholar. Massa’s approach is carried on in the Department’s commitment to a pluralistic vision of education that values both reflection-heuristics and concrete lived experience.