CNA debates the internationalisation of Catalonia

The former president of Catalonia Jordi Pujol, the scientific Jordi Camí, the macroeconomist Jordi Galí, the entrepreneur Ferran Soriano and the architect Benedetta Tagliabue will discuss priorities for internationalising Catalonia. The panel debate will take place on Tuesday 25 January, at 19.30, at the MACBA Auditorium in Barcelona.


January 24, 2011 10:41 PM

Barcelona (CNA) .- How can Catalonia overcome the challenges that the current economical crisis are posing? According to many studies, professionals and associations, one way is through the internationalisation. This week, the Catalan News Agency (CNA) will contribute to the debate about the internationalisation of Catalonia by hosting a high level, multidisciplinary round table discussion on the topic. On January 25 at 19.30, the former president of Catalonia Jordi Pujol, the researcher Jordí Camí, the economist Jordi Galí, the entrepreneur Ferran Soriano and the architect Benedetta Tagliabue will sit down with CNA to discuss the priorities needed to bring about the internationalisation of Catalonia. You will be able to follow the panel debate live at CNA’s homepage via streaming and Twitter.

Jordi Pujol, Former President of the Catalan Government (1980-2003), Jordi Camí, Director General of the Biomedical Research Park of Barcelona, Jordi Galí, Director of the International Economics Research Centre, Ferran Soriano, Chairman of Spanair and Benedetta Tagliabue, Director of the architectural study Miralles-Tagliabue-EMBT will exchange opinions on how to internationalise the country from different points of views and sectors. The round table debate will take place at the Auditorium of the Contemporary Art Museum of Barcelona (MACBA) on January 25 at 19.30 and entry is free. The debate entitled 'Open up to the world - Priorities for internationalising Catalonia' will be moderated by the Director of the ACN, journalist Saül Gordillo.

Internationalising Catalonia and opening up to the world has become one of the priorities to overcome the current crisis. Several institutions and studies talk about the internationalisation of the Catalan economy or about research in Catalonia but people rarely sit down to discuss the idea in a multidisciplinary manner. That is why the Catalan News Agency has organised a round table entitled 'Open up to the world- Priorities for internationalizing Catalonia'.

Five top-level personalities and leading figures in the workplace will discuss this subject on Tuesday 25th of January at 19.30 pm at the MACBA Auditorium in the Raval district of Barcelona (Plaça dels Angels, 1). The debate will last two hours and admission is free. ACN will present its commitment to internationalising information about Catalonia - its English language news service, the Catalan News Agency (CNA).

The CNA ( is the English news service of ACN. The service reports on the main Catalan news stories of the day to an international audience. This service consists of a news portal, a biweekly newsletter and an open and plural opinion forum, Catalan Views (

Guest speakers

Jordi Pujol was president of the Catalan Government (named Generalitat de Catalunya) from 1980 until 2003. He began his political activity in 1946 combining it with defense and the promotion of Catalan culture during Franco’s Fascist dictatorship. He was captured in 1960 and imprisoned for his protests against the Franco regime. Although he was sentenced to seven years in prison, he was released after two and a half years and he immediately started a news line of political activity to rebuild the country. He focused on establishing organisations and projects for nation building in Catalonia like the Catalan Encyclopedia. In 1974, he founded the party, the Convergència Democràtica de Catalunya (Catalonia’s Democratic Convergence Party, CDC) of which he is still President. CDC is a moderate Catalan nationalist party with a Liberal and Social Democratic ideology. Pujol played a major role in negotiations on the Statue of Autonomy of Catalonia in 1979. In 1980, Pujol was elected as the President of the Generalitat de Catalunya and was re-elected seven more times. Today, he directs the Jordi Pujol Centre for Studies, plays a role in the public intellectual arena and participates in numerous conferences and debates.

Jordi Camí is the CEO of Barcelona’s Biomedical Research Park (PRBB), the CEO of the Pasqual Maragall Foundation for Research on Alzheimer and a professor of pharmacology at the UPF since 1997 (before it was UAB). Dr. Camí is one of most renowned experts in toxicology, particularly in drug abuse and has produced numerous publications since 1977. He is also an expert in science policy and has been published extensively on the subject and has evaluated research and public programs. As CEO of PRBB and the Pasqual Maragall Foundation and having worked on so many other projects, Dr. Camí is an expert on the issue and has worked intensively to promote research and innovation in Catalonia and especially Barcelona. He is considered one of the main drivers for the city's cluster research of biomedical worldwide.

Jordi Galí is the director of the Economics International Research Centre (CREI) of the UPF since 1999, where he works as senior researcher. Galí has a PhD in Economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and is one of the most prestigious macroeconomists in the world. His name has been included in the shortlists for the Nobel Prize in Economics. He also works as a consultant for the European Central Bank. Before being linked to the UPF as a professor of economy and a researcher at CREI, Dr. Galí was a professor at MIT, the University of Columbia, the University of New York and Yale University. In 2010, he became the vice president of the European Association of Economics and he is a member of research centers and professional associations in the international field. In addition, he is a member of the editorial board for ten leading scientific publications. Dr. Galí has an extensive list of publications in his name on topics like macroeconomics that highlight his expertise in economic cycles, political monetary and interest rates.

Ferran Soriano is currently the president of the airline Spanair, a company that is helping to turn Barcelona - El Prat airport into an intercontinental hub. Soriano has a Masters in Business Management and a degree in Business. With twenty years of professional experience, he has become one of the most highly rated executives in Catalonia and has worked in ten countries in Europe and America. Besides Spanair, Soriano also has responsibilities in the venture capital company Nauta Capital that specialises in the telecommunications industry. Soriano is also the president of 36L, the first e-book distributor in Spain. Previously, he co-founded Cluster Consulting, a company that was dedicated to strategic consultancy with a presence in eight countries and traded on Nasdaq. Apart from the business world, Soriano is also known for having been vice president for economical matters at F. C. Barcelona between 2003 and 2010. In fact, he linked the business world with that of football in his book, 'Goals are not scored by chance'.

Benedetta Tagliabue is the architect and head of the architectural study Miralles Tagliabue EMBT that she founded together with Enric Miralles in 1991. Born in Milan, Tagliabue followed her studies in Venice and New York. Twenty years ago, she moved to Barcelona, where she designs international projects. Her latest best-known work is the Spanish Pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo. She is currently working on several projects in China, Germany and Italy. Her main works (some of which was co-designed with Enric Miralles) is the Scottish Parliament, the Town Hall of Utrech and the new headquarters of Gas Natural in Barcelona. In fact, locally she has designed numerous works, like the reform of Santa Caterina Market in Barcelona, Colors Park in Mollet del Vallès and the Igualada’s Cemetery Park. Tagliabue has received numerous international awards and her work has been show cased all around the world. Tagliabue is a member of important associations including the Royal Institute of British Architects. She is also a professor at the University of Columbia and holds summer workshops at the Institute of technology in Mexico and Architectural school of Venice (IUAV) In 2004 Edinburgh Napier University appointed her with a doctorate honoris causa.

The round table 'Open up to the world - Priorities for internationalising Catalonia’ will conclude with a questions and answers session between journalists, guest speakers and the audience.

You will be able to follow the panel debate live at CNA’s homepage via streaming and Twitter.