Clarifications Regarding the Situation in Catalonia

IESE Press Room

Clarifications Regarding the Situation in Catalonia

The current political situation in Catalonia may raise some questions among our students regarding the functioning of our Barcelona campus. For this reason, we have prepared responses to some of the most common questions.

Updated: November 15, 2017

  • What is the political situation in Catalonia?

    Since October 27, the central government has assumed the powers of the Generalitat in Catalonia by applying Article 155 of Spain´s Constitution. New regional elections are scheduled for December 21. As we are now in a pre-electoral period, there will be an increase in election-related activities during the coming weeks.

  • Is this situation affecting the normal functioning of IESE’s Barcelona campus?

    The campus is carrying out its usual activity. The different demonstrations and protests that have taken place in Barcelona in recent weeks have not affected the normal functioning of IESE’s campus.

    Students, executives and visitors have continued to come from across the globe to participate in our programs.

  • What is IESE’s position regarding this situation?

    IESE is an educational – rather than political – endeavor. As a university institution, we do not adopt political positions, although of course our employees, students, professors and alumni all hold their own opinions. We respect personal freedom and we trust in the individual responsibility of our entire community.

    As a global institution, IESE’s mission is clear: to form executives and business leaders so that they may lead their companies and have positive impact on society through their professionalism, integrity and spirit of service. This learning takes place in a context of utmost respect for each person and their personal preferences.

    IESE as a university institution regards respect for the law as the framework that allows companies and societies to develop and progress. The basis of peaceful and fruitful coexistence is respect for others that is rooted in respect for the law.

  • What is the opinion of people who form part of the IESE community on this issue?

    There are more than 700 people who are developing their professional careers at IESE, and more than 45,000 IESE alumni around the world. As a university institution, we are a global, plural, open entity in which we respect personal freedom and trust in personal responsibility.

    IESE wishes to provide an environment in which participants can learn and grow with freedom and with maximum respect for others, a place where different opinions from the corporate world can be discussed calmly.

  • With more than 45,000 Alumni all over the world, how does IESE see the impact of this situation on companies and society?

    There is enormous tension, which is hurting the economy in Catalonia and throughout Spain. The longer it lasts, the more damage we will suffer. Furthermore, as always in an economic crisis, it is the weakest that will be most affected. We have not yet overcome all the negative consequences of the last economic crisis, such as unemployment. We cannot afford to enter into a new crisis.

    Research confirms that a stable institutional framework is key to the development of the economy. We all have to respect this and work with a sense of institutional responsibility.

    We are especially worried about the social division that we are seeing. That is why we are encouraging our former students to actively promote social cohesion and to highlight what unites us.

  • Is the departure of companies from Catalonia harming the economy and employment?

    During the month of October 2017, a context of political uncertainty was created, which has led many companies to move their central and sometimes fiscal headquarters. This uncertainty has negatively affected entrepreneurship and has led some companies to rethink investment decisions.

  • Is the situation in Catalonia affecting demand for courses in Barcelona, in comparison to other campuses?

    The IESE campus in Barcelona and its programs are functioning normally and with the usual number of participants.

    We trust that the political and economic situation will return to normal as soon as possible, because prolonged uncertainty does not benefit anyone.

  • Will IESE change its headquarters?

    There is no planned change. Like the University of Navarra and all its schools, IESE has its legal headquarters in Navarra, and its board of directors is distributed among the different campuses where it has activities.

  • Will the current situation in Catalonia change IESE’s investment plan in Barcelona, begun last year with the campus expansion?

    The expansion of our campus in Barcelona, which will be finalized in the next months, corresponds to an increase in our activities for the MBA programs. Currently there are no new investment plans for IESE in Barcelona.

  • Does Barcelona continue to be an important hub for education and jobs?
    Of course. Barcelona is an attractive city with many high quality universities and business schools.
  • In recent weeks, several news items have appeared linking IESE to the situation in Catalonia. Is all the information correct?

    Some information has appeared in the media regarding IESE, and not all of it is accurate. See the attached document for our clarifications on this. p>

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Marie T. Oates - US

Dorothee von Canstein - Germany