Milan CBA Summer School - X edition
18-19-20 September 2023

and approach

CSIL announces the 10th edition of the Milan Summer School on Cost Benefit Analysis (CBA) of Investment Projects, which will be held in Milan on 18, 19 and 20 September 2023.

The ongoing availability of financing opportunities for the green, digital and just transition calls for sound national frameworks and methods for the prioritisation, appraisal and selection of investments. The Milan Summer School offers an intensive and participative learning experience focused on CBA as a tool supporting the decision-making process of public investments.

Building on our experience, we have refocused, updated and expanded the programme and approach. All sessions will be interactive and hands-on. Lectures on principles and methods of CBA and sectoral applications feature exercises on real cases and interactive tools to practice lessons learnt. With the support of lecturers, participants will deepen their understanding of how to apply CBA in relevant workplace scenarios. At the end of the programme, participants will be able to understand the principles and methods of CBA, design a cost-benefit analysis framework and the data collection plan, get an in-depth knowledge of the specificities of its sectoral application, and assess the completeness and quality of a real-life CBA.

Lecturers are experts – academics and consultants - with longstanding experience designing, implementing and reviewing CBA of infrastructure projects. Amongst the lecturers, there are experts involved in preparing the European Commission’s Guide to Cost-Benefit Analysis of Investment Projects and the Economic Appraisal Vademecum 2021-2027.

The School is principally designed for public-decision makers involved in the design, preparation, assessment and implementation of investment projects (managing authorities, intermediate bodies, etc.) at different levels of government. It may also benefit researchers and practitioners willing to learn the at-the-edge international CBA techniques and methods.

No previous exposure to CBA is needed to attend the Summer School, but a good command of Excel and advanced use of English are essential to participating in practical activities, foreseen in all sessions of the programme. Participants are required to bring their laptops with Excel installed.

The Society for Benefit Analysis (SBCA) will hold its 2023 European Conference on 11-12 September 2023 at the Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods (DEMM) of the University of Milan. Attending both events is particularly recommended for a full immersion in CBA.


18 September

9:00 - 9:15
Arrival and registration
9:15 - 9:30
Welcome and introduction
Prof. Massimo Florio, University of Milan
Jessica Catalano, CSIL 
9:30 - 10:30
Key principles of CBA
Definition, scope and objective, key ingredients
Prof. Massimo Florio, University of Milan
10:30- 11:15
Feasibility analysis I
Project objectives, needs and context description
Silvia Vignetti, CSIL
11:15 - 11:30
Coffee Break
11:30 - 13:00
Financial analysis II
Project identification, options and demand analysis; investment priorities and applications in selected sectors 
[Environment, Transport, RDI, Health, Energy efficiency]
Silvia Vignetti, CSIL
13:00 - 14:00
14:00 - 15:30
Financial analysis
Discounted cash flow method, investment cost, maintenance and residual value, operating costs, tariffs and revenues; project profitability and sustainability
Chiara Pancotti, CSIL
15:30 - 15:45
Coffee Break
15:45 - 16:30
Wrap up and discussion.
Chiara Pancotti, CSIL
Silvia Vignetti, CSIL
17:15 - 21:00
Cultural and social activities

19 September

9:00 - 9:15
Arrival and registration
9:15 - 10:45
Economic Analysis. Introduction
Corrections from financial analysis to economic analysis, social discount rate; shadow prices; economic performance indicators; introduction to approaches to estimating benefits
Chiara Pancotti, CSIL
10:45 - 11:15
Economic Analysis. Thematic Session I
The choice of a social discount rate
Jessica Catalano, CSIL
11:15 - 11:30
Coffee Break
11:30 - 13:00
Economic Analysis. Thematic Session II
Valuation of time-saving and improved reliability: applications to transport
Enrico Bernardis, TPLAN
13:00 - 14:00
14:00 - 15:30
Economic Analysis. Thematic Session III
Green investments: multiple benefits and economic appraisal of Energy Efficiency projects
Davide Sartori, European Investment Bank
15:30 - 15:45
Coffee Break
15:45 - 16:30
Economic Analysis. Thematic Session IV
Mortality, morbidity and quality of life: applications to health, environment and transport
Silvia Vignetti, CSIL
19:30 - 22:00
Networking cocktail

20 September

9:00 - 9:15
Arrival and registration
9:15 - 10:30
Economic Analysis. Thematic Session V
The value of technological transfer: applications to research infrastructures and space
Prof. Massimo Florio, University of Milan
Valentina Morretta, University of Milan
10:30 - 11:15
Economic Analysis. Thematic Session VI
The value of open science
Jessica Catalano, CSIL 
Despoina Sousoni, ELIXIR
11:15 - 11:30
Coffee Break
11:30 - 12:15
Economic Analysis. Thematic Session VII
Contingent evaluation: applications to environment, RDI and culture
Francesco Giffoni, CSIL
12:15 - 13:00
Economic Analysis. Thematic Session VIII
The value of human capital formation
Erica Delugas, CSIL
13:00 - 14:00
14:00 - 15:30
Uncertainty and risk
Sensitivity analysis; risk analysis; Montecarlo simulation; qualitative risk analysis; risk prevention and mitigation measures
Silvia Vignetti, CSIL
15:30 - 15:45
Coffee Break
15:45 - 16:30
CBA and its use in the decision-making process
How to read and use CBA results.
Prof. Massimo Florio, University of Milan
16:30 - 17:00
Issue of certificates and pictures

Milan CBA Summer School allows participants to acquire a solid background in different aspects:

  • the general CBA principles and methods (how to design and run a financial, economic, sensitivity and risk analysis);
  • to get an in-depth knowledge of its sectoral application (the typical benefits to consider by sector and the techniques most frequently used to evaluate them);
  • to learn how to efficiently review the quality of a CBA and improve it (practice on real-life cases and critical discussion).

Participants will interact during all sessions. Games, quizzes and exercises on real cases are embedded into lectures and presentations so that participants apply their newly acquired knowledge. They will practice concepts learnt with lecturers and tutors to deepen their understanding of the analysis results and critically discuss their solidity and underpinnings. The practice-oriented approach is useful for understanding how to apply CBA in public decision-making.

All participants must bring their laptops with Excel installed.

Participants should possess basic economics and/or social sciences knowledge to draw the maximum benefit from the course. Excellent knowledge of English and standard office tools is required. In particular, good knowledge and command of Excel are essential.

Participants are welcome to bring their personal experiences with practical examples of projects they may have encountered in their professional experience to boost the discussion on challenges faced with applying the methodology across different sectors.

Useful literature on Cost-Benefit Analysis that can be used as self-study material before joining the School

  1. Guide to Cost-Benefit Analysis of Investment Projects (good introduction to Cost-Benefit Analysis principles and applications across sectors), European Commission, 2014
  2. Economic Appraisal Vademecum 2021-2027, European Commission, 2021
  3. Applied Welfare Economics: Cost-Benefit Analysis of Projects and Policies, Routledge, 2022. 
  4. Estimations of SDR in selected countries, CSIL working paper 01/2022
  5. Analytical framework for ex-post evaluation of transport projects: lessons learnt on retrospective CBA, Regional Science, 2019.

Registration time: 1 February 2023 – 30 June 2023

FEE: 1,950 EUR

The indicated fee is net of VAT (22%). The VAT payment will be checked case by case during the payment phase. Generally, VAT is not due if the payer – i.e. the invoice’s addresses - to be specified in the application form - is VAT exempted (e.g. the European Commission) or has a VAT number (reversal charge applicable).
The fee includes attendance to lectures, one networking cocktail, lunches, coffee breaks, training materials, certificate of attendance.

Travel and accommodation costs will be at the participants’ expense. Participants are recommended to book their accommodation well in advance.

A fee of 1,650 EUR (over 15% of discount from the full fee) is reserved to:

  • participants in previous editions of the School;
  • applicants working at European Institutions;
  • participants from EBN, EES, RSA and SBCA members;
  • participants working in the same public organisation.

Please, note that the conditions for discounts are not cumulative. Applicants can select only one condition for a discount on the application form.


Following their online registrations, applicants will receive a payment form. Payments can be performed by international bank transfer, credit card, or PayPal. Once CSIL Administrative department receives the payment, the organising committee will send an email confirming the admission to the Summer School.


For cancellations of participation until 45 days before the course start date, the total fee paid will be refunded.
For cancellations until 20 days before the course start date, 80% of the fee paid will be refunded.
For cancellations until the day before the course start date, 20% of the fee will be refunded.
Not cancelled reservations and no-shows will not be refunded (no-show bill). All cancellations need to be in writing.
There is no charge for qualified substitute participants.


Data will be stored in accordance with CSIL’s Privacy Policy and used for internal purposes only.


Only participants attending all lectures in the three training days will receive a certificate. Shorter attendance will not be recognised.


The number of participants is limited to 50. Acceptance will be guaranteed on a first-come basis. If we receive further requests, acceptance may be at the discretion of the organising committee and aimed at ensuring a balanced audience (in terms of geographical origin, gender balance, seniority level, professional background, affiliation, etc.).

Applications must be submitted online and fully completed. Incomplete and incorrect applications will not be considered.

If you have experienced any problems submitting the form or submitted it but have not received feedback within 5 days, please get in touch via email or telephone (; +39 02 84102186).




    (*) Required fields


    The Summer School will be held in the centre of Milan, at the NH Milano Touring Hotel. The address is Via Iginio Ugo Tarchetti, 2 (nearest metro stop: “Repubblica”)


    All training materials and lessons are in English.


    Lunches are included in the fee.

    CSIL will offer a networking cocktail on 19 September 2023, which will take place on a rooftop in the centre of Milan. Information will be provided to selected applicants in due course. Applicants are kindly invited to indicate any dietary preference (e.g. vegetarian, gluten-free, etc.) while submitting the application form.


    Travel and accommodation costs are at the participants’ expense. We have compiled some recommendations for suitable accommodations near the Milan CBA Summer School location. We also suggest searching for apartments/B&B online:

    Booking  | Airbnb


    Feel free to contact the organisation should you need any help.

    Although Milan Summer School’s program is intensive and focused, participants will benefit from a vibrant cultural environment once the courses finish in the afternoon. We have contacted certified tourist guides to organise cultural visits to allow participants to discover the city of Milan, its history and culture. Also, CSIL team looks forward to welcoming the Summer School participants in Milan and networking during social activities.

    Monday 18 September 2023

    5 pm: MILAN CATHEDRAL’S TERRACES (duration: 1 hour and a half)

    Milan’s cathedral houses 3,500 statues, 135 spires and 200 bas-reliefs that can be observed from a unique point of view: it is possible to walk on the terraces of the Duomo and from there enjoy close-up not only the vision of spires, statues and the famous Madonnina d'oro but also a panoramic view of the city: from Piazza del Duomo to the modern skyscrapers of Porta Nuova and Citylife.

    7 pm: MILANO PORTA NUOVA: THE MODERN GIANTS (duration: 1 hour and a half)

    Milan has been modernised and renewed, with the Porta Nuova area reborn, populating itself with modern “giants”: vertiginous skyscrapers whose silhouettes radically transformed the Milan skyline, projecting it into the future. The tour develops in the shade of Cesar Pirelli’s spire, which stands at the top of the UniCredit skyscraper, among the animated fountains of Piazza Gae Aulenti, the hanging plants of Bosco Verticale and the stained glass windows of the Diamantone. This tour is a unique opportunity to discover together the new face of the “rising city”.

    Tuesday 19 September 2023


    CSIL is pleased to invite you to the Summer School’s networking cocktail, an informal opportunity to get to know participants, lecturers and CSIL’s staff. Please, kindly confirm your participation in the application form.

    Please, note:

    • The cost of the cultural activities is not included in the Summer School’s fee except for the networking cocktail.
    • Participation in cultural and social activities is NOT compulsory and entirely optional;
    • Participants can enter as many visits as they are interested in (even just one);
    • All the cultural tours will be in English;

    If you want to join, ask for information at the Help Desk, or send an email to

    Other recommendations for those planning to stay more in Milan

    See more on Musement | Airbnb


    Prof Massimo Florio (University of Milan), Silvia Vignetti (CSIL),
    Jessica Catalano (University of Milan and CSIL), Chiara Pancotti (CSIL)


    Claudia Santoro (CSIL), Jessica Catalano (University of Milan and CSIL)