Pompeu Fabra University

Pompeu Fabra University

infobox University
name= Pompeu Fabra University

established= 1990
type= Public University
students= 8,500
city= Barcelona
state=Catalonia, Spain
address= Plaça de la Mercè, 10-12, 08002 Barcelona
website= [http://www.upf.edu www.upf.edu]
native_name= _ca. Universitat Pompeu Fabra
rector= Josep Joan Moreso Mateos
footnotes= data from 2007

Pompeu Fabra University ( _ca. Universitat Pompeu Fabra) is a public university in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain. Founded in 1990, it is named after the Catalan grammarian Pompeu Fabra. As of 2007, the university has 8,500 students and 1,008 lecturers. Out of the 8,500 students, 1,200 study Law, 900 study Business Sciencies, 820 study Business Management and Administration and 770 study Economics. Other relevant studies are Audiovisual Communication, Journalism, Political Sciences, Humanities and Labor Economics.

The university is ranked first nationally in the disciplines of Business, Political Science, Economics, and Law, among others. [ [http://aula.elmundo.es/aula/especiales/2007/50carreras/concertados.html] ] Despite its relatively small size and its foundation less than two decades ago, the institution is the third highest-ranked university in Spain.

The Business and Economics studies are renowned in Spain and throughout Europe. Well-known economists, such as Xavier Sala-i-Martín, Jordi Galí, Jaume Ventura and Andreu Mas-Colell give lectures in the Business and Economics faculty. [ [http://www.econ.upf.es/en/ Department of Economics and Business website] ]

The campus is scattered across Barcelona and is mostly composed of old renovated buildings. The conversion of these old buildings was mainly financed by the European Union and, to a lesser extent, by the Spanish and Catalan governments and Barcelona council.


On June 18, 1990, the Catalan Parliament gave the go-ahead for the creation of a new public university in Barcelona, Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF), inspired by the principles of freedom, democracy, justice, equality, independence and plurality. From its beginnings, this young academic institution has had two main objectives: to train professionals and citizens who are responsible and committed to civic values, and to contribute towards the development of research.

The first lectures at UPF were given on October 8, 1990 in the Balmes Building, once the site of the Fòrum Vergés. They were attended by some 300 students of the new Four-Year Degrees in Law and Economics and Business Sciences. Today it has 9,000 students, courses in all fields from experimental, health and life sciences to human and social sciences and technical studies and an expanding campus in the heart of the city, stretching between the Rambla and the district of Poblenou.

Parallel to the progress made in teaching and research, the campus has spread to provide the University with the facilities it needs. Over the years a line has emerged that runs from the Rambla to the Olympic Village, in the district of El Poblenou. All along this line the city’s historic buildings have been renovated, including the Dipòsit de les Aigües, built by Fontserè in 1888, now the library building; the former army barracks in Carrer Wellington; the buildings in Plaça de la Mercè, now housing the Rectorate, and in Plaça del Teatre, with the new Plaça de Joaquim Xirau; and França Station, where the first train in Spain started its run.

As regards the governance of UPF, Dr. Enric Argullol served as rector from the founding until June 2001. Prior to this, he had been Commissioner for the Promotion of the New University of Catalonia (the body that took the first steps of the educational project) and president of the Management Committee. At the end of his mandate, in June 2001, the University Senate elected Dr. M. Rosa Virós i Galtier, which has leaded the government of the University until May 2005. Present rector is Dr. Josep Joan Moreso Mateos, who won the election which took place on May 11, 2005.


The University has buildings scattered across Barcelona, mainly between les Rambles and Marina Avenue. The most important buildings are those of Ciutadella Campus, which concentrates the largest library of the University (Dipòsit de les Aigües), Roger de Llúria, and Jaume I buildings.

Ciutadella Campus

Dipòsit de les Aigües

The Water Tower building was designed in 1874 by master of works Josep Fontserè, who took charge of the whole of the old military garrison area. A then young student of architecture, Antoni Gaudí i Cornet, did the static calculation of the tower and support elements. It was conceived as a traditional structure and the modern technique –at those times– of iron pillars was ruled out, given the huge loads that the tower had to bear together with its great height. The building dates from 1876, but it wasn’t until 1880 that it was inaugurated as a water tower, with the purpose of regulating the flow of water of Ciutadella park’s waterfall and watering its gardens. The building was listed in the IFLA book "Classical Library Buildings of the World", along with other 50 libraries. [ [http://upf.edu/grec/en/0607/0330.htm e-Noticies - el Dipòsit de les Aigües, d'interès arquitectònic ] ]

The construction is a copy of a Roman prototype comprising a labyrinth of parallel arches of 14 metres in height, which cross over in a barrel vault and extend as if by mirror effect along its 65 metres of depth. After over a hundred years of different uses –as a municipal asylum, fire service store, changing room and garage of the Municipal Police force, justice archive...–it became UPF property in 1992.

The works to renovate the Water Tower, which was joined by subway with the Jaume I building, were begun in 1993. However, it wasn’t until 1999 that it started to work as the University Central Library. Today, three quarters of the building is in working order.

The surface area of the plot is 4,558 m2, 4,320 m2 of which are occupied and a renovated surface area of 14,850 m2. The architects who undertook the work of renovating were Lluís Clotet and Ignacio Paricio.

The Water Tower (Dipòsit de les Aigües) houses the Administration Building of the renowned the Jaume Vicens i Vives University Institute of History, whose headquarters are located in this building (including Josep Fontana's private collection of books donated to the IUHJVV and the Pompeu Fabra University); as weel as the documentation centre of the Central Library includes, among others, the collections of the Haas Library, of the Barcelona Chamber of Commerce.

Edifici Roger de Llúria

The Roger de Llúria building, like its neighbour the Jaume I building, was originally built and used as a military barracks. Analysis of four consecrated designs at the Jaume I barracks, plus the one corresponding to Roger de Llúria, lead us to believe that these undocumented designs are two intermediate designs between the first project, and that of colonel Rueda, of 1847, and some later adjustments, done in January 1879.

In 1868, the old military garrison was demolished and four years later, the Ciutadella park was created. In compensation, the Ministry of War required the construction of the two military barracks, Jaume I and Roger de Llúria (which were finished by 1887) and some annexed military pavilions.

The Ciutadella barracks were conceived on the basis of fixed modules, with quite elongated rectangular-shaped wings, for the ground floor and a further two storeys, with a pitched roof, organised around a porticoed rectangular patio. Over a century ago, the Ciutadella barracks introduced the characteristic shapes of the central Eixample in a suburban landscape.

The renovation works on the Roger de Llúria building began in 1997. It was inaugurated in the year 2000, and initially, Law studies moved here. The Jaume I and Roger de Llúria buildings are currently host to social sciences and humanities.The surface area of the Roger de Llúria building plot is 8,997 m2, with a constructed surface of 5,292 m2 and a renovated surface area of 26,957 m2. The team of MBM Arquitectos, SA, Josep Maria Martorell, Oriol Bohigas and David Mackay, was commissioned to perform the renovation. This building was awarded the 2001 Ciutat de Barcelona Prize for architecture and urban planning and was a finalist at the 44th edition of the ADI-FAD prizes for architecture and interior design.

From outside, the Roger de Llúria building conserves the same rectangular proportions as the Jaume I building, but is different inside due to a ring-shaped floor that configures a central patio which is as wide as an Eixample street (80 metres). Within this area two new constructions were erected: one with a glass façade, where there are large lecture halls; and another that houses the lecturers’ offices and was built as a body suspended above the patio but is largely dysfunctional for lack of light. This latter construction has four floors and a façade which is crowned in wood and has large horizontal cuts in the windows. The patio is located at basement level and is covered by an aluminium, glass and iron cover, whose saw tooth structure allows natural light to be harnessed.

At one end of the interior patio of the Roger de Llúria building we find the Memorial in homage to the lecturers who were removed from Catalan universities at the beginning of the Franco dictatorship (1939-1940). With the creation of this memorial, UPF wished to pay homage to the nigh-on one hundred and twenty lecturers of Autonomous University of Barcelona (Pompeu Fabra among them) who, with the end of the Civil War, were relieved of their teaching charges, which, for many of them, meant setting off on the long road to exile.

The Memorial consists of a 4-metre wide circular glass box of 40 centimetres in height. The upper lid is made up of three glass laminates in the middle of which in circular form are written the names of those to whom homage is paid, and the lower cover is made of translucent glass. The names of the lecturers are successively lit up by a permanent ray of light which moves clockwise in a circular direction

Roger de Llúria holds the following Faculties, Schools and Studies:Faculty of Economic and Business Sciences, Faculty of Law, Facultay of Humanities, University School of Business Studies, University School of Labour Relations, Political and Administration Sciences Studies, Labour Sciences Studies and the Department of Law.

Edifici Jaume I

Edifici Wellington

Annex Llull

Annex Ramon Turró

Edifici Rambla

Edifici França

Edifici Ocata

Edifici ESCI-Born

Edifici Balmes

Edifici Mercè

Ca l'Aranyó Communication Campus

Ca l'Aranyó is a former factory in the Sant Martí district of Barcelona which currently hosts Pompeu Fabra University's Communication Campus. Part of the city's new "22@" technology and business facilities in and around Poblenou, it's located between Avinguda Diagonal, Carrer de Tànger, Carrer Roc Boronat and Carrer Llacuna. It will officially open in late 2008. Among other special and relevant research centers, this new campus will host the Science Communication Observatory.


There's a Trambesòs station called Ca l'Aranyó, served by T4. Also, it's easily accessed from the Barcelona Metro station Glòries, in Plaça de les Glòries Catalanes.

Campus del Mar

Edifici Doctor Aiguader

Edifici PRBB

ee also

* Institut Universitari de Cultura
* Elisava
* Joan Lluís Vives Institute
* Pompeu Fabra
* [http://www.barcelonagse.eu Barcelona GSE - Graduate School of Economics]


External links

* [http://istudy.iagora.com/Universitat_Pompeu_Fabra/reviews.html Pompeu Fabra University for foreign students on iAgora] - Reviews by former Erasmus and other international students in Barcelona on iAgora.
* [http://www.upf.edu/english/web/ The university's English-language web site]

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