2021, a year of reuniting

We've reviewed the biggest milestones, news and initiatives that have shaped IESE over the past 12 months

At IESE we'll remember 2021 as a year full of reasons to regain hope. Photo: Edu Ferrer

December 22, 2021

As 2022 approaches, the pandemic and the uncertainty surrounding it continue to be a harsh reality that we all have to live with every day. Still, at IESE we’ll remember 2021 as a year full of reasons to regain hope. Because despite the masks, the distancing and the restrictions, over these last 12 months we’ve consolidated activity across our campuses, launched new initiatives and projects, and resumed events that we missed so much.

Record number of MBA students and the number 1 program in the world according to The Economist

The class that began the MBA program this academic year was the largest in IESE’s history, with 387 students. The British publication highlighted as IESE’s strengths in its 2021 ranking the close collaboration between students and teachers, innovative learning methods and personalized master’s training.


Our new Madrid campus opened its doors as we inaugurated a spectacular new building that triples the space available in the Spanish capital.


The new campus was the site of the Global Alumni Reunion 2021, which featured more than 35 global experts on business and sustainability.

In person and on campus

Our classrooms have welcomed students and participants from around the world, some of whom had to go through true odysseys to live the IESE experience in person.

The Sound of Purpose

Of all the great stories that have inspired us on campus this year, that of pianist Ignasi Cambra’s ability to adapt has been among the most impressive.

A drone’s eye view

Thanks to drones, we’ve been able to see our Madrid and Barcelona campuses like never before.


Our professors have taken off their masks to show us what they’re like beyond the cases, books and classrooms.

IESE research in Science

The prestigious Science magazine has published two articles featuring research by our professors: one by Sampsa Samila, which looked at biomedical patents to find links between the presence of women inventors and research into women’s health, and another by Pietro Bonetti, on the relationship between fracking and surface water quality.

Sustainable Leadership Initiative

2021 also saw the creation of a new IESE initiative aimed at contributing to a more enlightened form capitalism, which focuses on creating long-term value and takes into account the needs of all stakeholders and society in general.

Highlights from IESE Insight

Other important research and publications this year have been:

Highlights from IESE StandOut

Our IESE StandOut blog has continued to provide advice and inspiration to leaders who wish to grow throughout the different stages of their career, with articles such as these: