A Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence (JMCE) is a focal point of competence and knowledge on European Union subjects. It brings together high-level experts to create links between the various disciplines and resources in European studies and to form links with academic institutions in other countries.
This is precisely the reason why the Barcelona Center for European Studies (BACES) is aimed at fostering the study of and innovative teaching and research on the EU among UPF faculty staff as well as graduate and undergraduate students. Understood as the first step towards the establishment of a permanent Centre for European Studies at our university, BACES aims to promote multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary understandings of the Union’s politics, economics and law.
To achieve such outcome, BACES is strongly involved into pursuing the training of new generations of scholars and experts in EU studies while also serving the role of a vibrant forum for discussing current EU affairs.
More specifically, BACES’s active mission can be summarized into 4 specific objectives:
- The development of innovative approaches into EU courses and the production of didactic materials
- The consolidation of a strong research environment on EU studies
- An improved educational, academic and media coverage of EU current issues
- The establishment of a stable dialogue between policy-makers and academics on EU policy issues
At normative level, BACES emphasizes the compromise for enhancing democracy, promoting human rights and a better policy-making in the mid-long term in the EU.
At organizational level, BACES is also an important background structure for 2 Jean Monnet Chairs currently awarded to UPF (Prof. Arregui’s JMC on European Governance and Prof. Guirao’s JMC ad personam on the history of European Integration). Furthermore, it also counts upon a wider circle of academic and institutional collaborators as well as a small number of researchers’ staff.
The Barcelona Center for European Studies was officially inaugurated on January 31st, 2020 by means of a conference from Viviane Reding, former Vice-president of the European Commission and former European commissioner for Justice. The ceremony also counted upon the presence of 2 UPF vice-rectors and of Ferrán Tarradellas, former director of the EC’s Representation Office in Barcelona.
According the European Commission’s website, Jean Monnet Activities are designed to promote excellence in teaching and research in the field of European Union studies worldwide. The activities also foster the dialogue between the academic world and policy-makers, in particular with the aim of enhancing governance of EU policies.
Furthermore, a Jean Monnet Chair (JMC) is understood as a teaching post with a specialisation in European Union studies for university professors. It can only be held by one professor, who must provide the minimum of 90 teaching hours per academic year over a period of three consecutive years. In addition, the Chair must carry out at least one additional activity per academic year.
Since before the birth of BACES, Pompeu Fabra University already counted upon the presence of multiple JMCs. Both the Director and Deputy-Director still hold their own individual Chairs and have committed into bringing them into integrated cooperation through the BACES Centre of Excellence. These are:
JMC Professor: Javier Arregui
Period: 2016-2018 / 2018-2021
In September 2015, the European Commission decided to award a JMC project to Prof. Javier Arregui, as an expert in processes of decision-making and policy-making within the European Union.
Indeed, the European governance system is composed of a series of formal and informal institutions and the corresponding relations and processes among the 27 member states of the Union. Their decisions and preferences have a strong impact on the final content of European public policies. In order to improve understanding in this area, the activities of the JMC are focused on the production and diffusion of research about the European governance model. However, this is complemented through the introduction of academic and dissemination activities aimed at spreading debates related to European governance.
JMC Professor: Fernando Guirao
Period: Ad Personam since 2003 (previously, non-permanent: 1995-2001; permanent: 2002)
Jean Monnet Chair Ad Personam in European Integration History
Jean Monnet Chairs Ad Personam from the European Commission were reserved for distinguished University professors with a high- level teaching and publication record in the field of European integration (achieved, at least in part, outside their country of residence) and/or with a distinguished background as former high-level practitioners in the field of European integration.
Following Prof. Guirao’s established trajectory as a member of the Liaison Committee of Historians and co-editor of the Journal of European Integration History, the Commission decided to further award a permanent Chair to consolidate academic and dissemination activities on the history of the Union.