Mr Gabriele Restelli

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I'm currently a doctoral researcher at the Global Development Institute, where, adopting a mixed-methods design, I investigate the effects of foreign aid on international migration flows.

I like to think that my research focuses on bridges. On the one hand, coming from a professional background in the development and humanitarian sectors, I aim at bridging practitioners with academia, offering relevant analytical tools that facilitate planning and implementation. On the other hand, my objective is to provide policy makers with more solid evidence base in key sectors.

My interests overlap between international migration and foreign aid.


I obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Political Sciences (2006) and a Master’s Degree in Comparative Political and Institutional Studies (2009) from University of Milano. After graduating, I've collaborated with the Department of Social and Political Studies as a Research Assistant.

While cooperating with University of Milano, I gained a post - graduate diploma in "Techniques  for International Development Cooperation". After a short assigment at Publish What You Fund in London, where I supported with policy-oriented research focused on Aid Transparency, I’ve moved to the development sector as a Project Manager.

After shifting to humanitarian operations and serving in Pakistan, South Sudan and Lebanon as a Programme Manager and Technical Coordinator for several NGOs,  I have decided to resume academic studies and research. Thus, after gaining a Master of Research from University of East Anglia with a dissertation on "The effects of development aid on international migration to Italy", I joined GDI in 2017. Here, I focus on the effects of foreign aid on international migration to Europe.

Areas of expertise

Research Networks and Beacons


  • Forced Migration, Displacement, Refugees, Asylum

Education / academic qualifications

  • 2017 - Master of Research, Social Science Research Methods, University of East Anglia (2016 - 2017)
  • 2009 - Master of Arts, Comparative Politics, Universita Degli Studi di Milano (2006 - 2009)
  • 2006 - Bachelor of Arts, Political Sciences, Universita Degli Studi di Milano (2003 - 2006)

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