School of Public Service

Marco Tavanti, Ph.D.

Office: 14 E. Jackson, Room 1614
Phone: 312.362.8463
Fax: 312.362.5506
Office Hours: By appointment

Associate Professor

Dr. Marco Tavanti is an experienced international development scholar and the Chair of the International Public Service (IPS) graduate degree program. He serves as President the World Engagement Institute (WEI), an international NGO dedicated to cooperation and capacity development. He received his Ph.D. in Sociology (with distinction) from Loyola University Chicago (LUC) in 2001. He teaches international public service courses related to the United Nations, international relations, NGO management, global civil society and sustainable development. He has published numerous studies on innovative approaches to sustainable international development, intercultural value leadership, indigenous human rights and poverty reduction. His expertise for international monitoring and evaluations (M&E) include participatory poverty assessment (PPA) and appreciative inquiry approaches (AIA) for urban poverty reduction and civil society engagement. He has been nominated as Business Ethics Wicklander Fellow in the Institute for Business and Professional Ethics (IBPE), Faculty Member for the Sustainability Initiatives Task Force (SITF) and the Ethics Across the Curricula (EAC) committee at DePaul University. He is Chair of the Sustainable Capacity International Institute (SCII-ONLUS) and Advisory Board member of Jubilee Economics (JEM) and the Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago.
Dr. Tavanti’s teaching methods aims at developing engaged leaders and competent managers. He brings his professional expertize and international scholarship into the classroom. Through his knowledge and participatory methods, he offers students the possibility of bridging their study into a competent and competitive career in international public service. He designed the International Public Service program as an educational opportunity to learn cutting edge notions while developing essential management skills. He introduced innovative teaching methods and crafted numerous graduate courses including sustainable development, international ethics, global civil society, intercultural communication, international conflict management and management of international non-governmental organizations. He designed teaching and travelling courses with the United Nations and directed numerous short-term study-aboard programs in Mexico, Philippines, Italy, Brazil and Jordan. He has been collaborating with the Steans Center for Community Based Service Learning and the International Human Rights Law Institute (IHRLI) for international service learning courses. He created the Value-Centered Leadership Certificate course and has been instrumental in the creation of courses on poverty study in the Peace and Justice Program. His pedagogy focuses on technology, professional adult education, community engagement and international experiential learning.

Dr. Tavanti’s scholarship is in the area of international sustainable development and intercultural leadership ethics. His publications aim at providing practical and integrated solutions to issues in international development and poverty reduction. His research methods are participatory in nature and directed at building international capacity in leaders, organizations and institutions. His fieldwork research in Chiapas, Mexico generated a study called Las Abejas, judged as outstanding study of indigenous civil society and identity construction. Dr. Tavanti conducted the founding research for the Hay Leadership project, designed the Vincentian Leadership Assessments (VLAs) and published various articles on contemporary Vincentian leadership practices. His current research projects study food security, rights-based development, anti-corruption and anti-human trafficking. He is the Editor of the International Journal of Sustainable Human Security (IJSHS) and the Associate Editor of the PBD International Scholar Society Journal International Research and Review (IRR), The International Journal of Sustainability in Economic, Social and Cultural Context and the International Leadership Association (ILA) Journal Leadership and the Humanities (L&H). Read more and download some of his publications collected in the DePaul Institutional Repository Via Sapientiae.

Dr. Tavanti’s international experience stretches over 25 years of international development and poverty reduction initiatives in more than 18 counties in Europe, East Africa, South East Asia and Latin America. In Italy, his native country, he worked for Caritas, fair trade organizations and co-founded Casa Aperta a community house for immigrant and at-risk youth. He worked in rural development programs near Dodoma in Tanzania and in informal settlements in Nairobi, Kenya. In Sao Luis, Brazil he worked and collaborated with the Landless Movement (MST) and Christian Base Communities (CEBs). In the Balkans, he participated in humanitarian relief operations during the 1993 Bosnia-Herzegovina conflict in collaboration with various European and international NGOs. He volunteered and conducted capacity development research initiatives among Lakota Indigenous groups and Maya indigenous communities during the Chiapas-Zapatista conflict. He has established numerous collaborative programs and consultancies with United Nations agencies including the Development Programme (UNDP), the Global Compact (UNGC), the Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO). Through the collaboration with academic institutions he has been instrumental in the development of programs for sustainable development and indigenous rights in the Sustainable Chiapas Program; on urban community sustainable development evaluations in the Manila-Philippines Program; on food policy, fair trade and sustainable food regulations in the Tuscany-Italy Program; and on the study of refugee service and humanitarian emergency management in the Amman-Jordan Program. Read more on his personal/professional website.