December 18, 2013Barcelona, Spain

First UOC International Research Symposium

First UOC International Research Symposium



This is the order of the speakers in the round table. Dr. Josep A. Planell, President of the UOC, will moderate it.

Dr. Josep A. Planell
President of the UOC
“UOC in the Global University System”

Dr. Josep A. Planell i Estany graduated in physics from the University of Barcelona and earned his doctorate in materials science from Queen Mary University of London. Since 1992 he has been a full professor in the materials science and metallurgy department at the Barcelona School of Industrial Engineering (Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya). He was Director of the Institute of Bioengineering of Catalonia from its establishment in December 2005 until April 2013, when he took office as President of the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC)

In 2001 he was awarded the Catalan government’s Distinction for the Promotion of University Research and in 2006 he received the City of Barcelona Award in the technological research category. He has been a member of the Catalan Royal Academy of Doctors since 2006 and is an elected member of the Royal Academy of Arts and Sciences in Barcelona. In 2013 he received the George Winter Award from the European Society for Biomaterials.


[Download Dr. Josep A. Planell's presentation]


Dr. Manuel Castells
President of the Scientific Commission of the UOC
“The University in the Information Age”

Dr. Manuel Castells is professor of sociology and chair of the Scientific Commission for Research and Doctorate at the UOC. He is professor emeritus at the University of California, Berkeley, and university professor and the Wallis Annenberg Chair in communication technology and society at the University of Southern California. Castells won the 2013 Balzan Prize from the International Balzan Prize Foundation and the 2012 Holberg International Memorial Prize from the Parliament of Norway. He currently holds a visiting chair at the Institute of Global Studies, Maison des Sciences de I'Homme in Paris. He is also director of research at the department of sociology at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of St John's College, Cambridge. He is a Harold Lasswell Fellow of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, a Fellow of Academia Aeuropea, a Fellow of the Spanish Royal Academy of Economics and Finance and a Corresponding Fellow of the British Academy. 

Dr. Helga Nowotny
President of the European Research Council, European Commission
“Achievements and Challenges of Basic Research in Europe”

Dr. Helga Nowotny is professor emerita of social studies of science at ETH Zurich and a founding member of the European Research Council (ERC). In 2007 she was elected vice-president of the ERC and in 2010 appointed president of the ERC. She holds a PhD in sociology from Columbia University, NY, and a doctorate in jurisprudence from the University of Vienna. Her current host institution is the Vienna Science and Technology Fund (WWTF). Helga Nowotny is a member of the University Council of the Ludwig Maximilians University Munich and a member of many other international advisory boards and selection committees. Between 2005 and 2011 she chaired the Scientific Advisory Board of the University of Vienna. She is a foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, a member of the Academia Europaea and founding member of Euroscience. In 2003 she received the John Desmond Bernal Prize for lifelong achievement in social studies of science and in 2002 won the Arthur-Burckhardt-Preis.


Dr. Brenda Gourley
Ex-Vice Chancellor of the Open University, United Kingdom
“The New Frontiers of Distant Higher Education”

Dr. Brenda Gourley was vice-chancellor and CEO of the Open University in the United Kingdom from 2002 to 2009. Before that she held the same position at the University of Natal (now KwaZulu-Natal). She was a founder member of the Talloires Network of universities involved in civic engagement and served on its Steering Committee for five years. She holds and has held a range of positions on Boards and Trusts, serving two terms of office as chair of the Association of Commonwealth Universities and two terms of office on the board of the International Association of Universities as well as many others in various parts of the world in both the public and private sectors. She is a member of the International Advisory Board of the Open Education Resource Foundation.

Professor Gourley has also received recognition for her work in the form of fellowships and awards, as well as honorary degrees from eleven universities on four continents. 

Dr. Martin Carnoy
Professor of Education and economics, Stanford University
“The Global Transformation of the University System: China, India, Brasil, Russia”

Dr. Martin Carnoy received his BA in electrical engineering from the California Institute of Technology, MA, and his PhD in economics from the University of Chicago. He is the Vida Jacks Professor of Education at Stanford University School of Education. Previously, he was a research associate in economics in the Foreign Policy Division at the Brookings Institution. He is also a consultant to the World Bank, Inter-American Development Bank, Asian Development Bank, Unesco, IEA, OECD, Unicef and the International Labour Office. He is a member of the American Educational Research Association Grants Board Committee and of the International Academy of Education. Professor Carnoy is the author of a great number of publications on education and economic development, the political economy of the United States, the role of the state in social change and the changing international economy.


[Download Dr. Martin Carnoy's presentation]


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