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In 2020 IBEI started a long demanding evaluation process by the Institution of Research Centres of Catalonia (CERCA)  in order to be incorporated into their system, which culminated favourably.
At the beginning of 2021 IBEI received
the recognition as a CERCA centre.


The CERCA Institution is a public sector entity of the Generalitat de Catalunya for the monitoring, support and facilitation of the activity of research centres. Recognition as a CERCA centre will allow IBEI to improve the visibility and impact of its research, maximize synergies, as well as consolidate its standards of excellence, among others.


Within the framework of the accreditation process for IBEI degrees, the Master’s in International Security, the Master’s in International Relations and the Master’s in International Development obtained the qualification “accredited in progress of excellence” by the Catalan University Quality Assurance Agency (AQU Catalunya). The three master’s degrees passed the external evaluations of the AQU Catalunya with the maximum qualification. In July 2020, during the external visit of the evaluators, the IBEI scheduled meetings with students, graduates, teachers and management.

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The Institut d’Estudis Nord-americans (IEN) and the IBEI launched a program on American politics and international security in October 2020.


The program aims to promote the city of Barcelona as a relevant meeting place for American studies, attracting the best international experts and academics as a place for reflection and debate, with special attention to the implications of US foreign policy in the European and Mediterranean framework. Professor Jeffrey Michaels is the academic coordinator of the program. Michaels was selected from more than 50 applicants in a high-level international public call announced in February 2020. 


Where are the ECDC and the EU-wide responses in the COVID-19 pandemic?  


This analysis on the role of the European Centre for Disease Control (ECDC) during the COVID-19 pandemic, by IBEI director Jacint Jordana & IBEI researcher Juan Carlos Triviño-Salazar, was published in May 2020 in the The Lancet journal, one of the world's leading general medical journals.

Researchers heve found that only when key actors in the EU polity agree on a common response that is less politically costly than disagreement can European-wide public health mechanisms such
as the ECDC adopt a more active role.

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Aina Gallego, Associate Professor at Institut de Barcelona d’Estudis Internacionals (IBEI) and senior Research Associate at Institute of Political Economy and Governance (IPEG), and Katharina A. Janezic, PhD candidate in Economics at Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF) and the Barcelona Graduate School of Economics (BGSE), published in 2020 the article Eliciting preferences for truth-telling in a survey of politicians in the prestigious journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) in which they investigate for the first time the propensity to lie or be honest among politicians. The study suggests dishonesty may help politicians survive in office.


In January 2020, began the project “Trust in Governance and Regulation in Europe (TiGRE)”, participated by IBEI.

Funded by the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 research programme, the project will explore over the next 3.5 years trust relationships in three high value sectors: Finance, Food Safety and Communication & Data Protection. It will analyse the conditions under which their regulatory regimes are trusted at different levels of governance such as regional, national and European.

This interdisciplinary project benefits from the expertise of 9 partner universities and research centres from 9 different countries. 

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Two projects participated by IBEI researchers were awarded a grant by the European NORFACE network within the research programme ‘Democratic governance in a turbulent age’. A total of fourteen transnational research projects were selected for funding for a period of 2 years (2020-2022). With the “Democratic governance in a turbulent age” research programme, NORFACE offers a timely investigation of the precise nature of the turbulence, but also of how European states can negotiate this turbulence and develop strategies to enhance the quality of democratic politics and governance.


Charles Roger, Assistant Professor and Research Fellow Beatriu de Pinós at IBEI, published in 2020 his new book “The Origins of Informality” (Oxford University Press). The book offers a new way of thinking about informal organizations, presents new data revealing their extraordinary growth over time and across regions, and advances a novel theory to explain these patterns.

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ETHNICGOODS research project, funded by a European Research Council (ERC) Consolidator Grant, started in October 2020. 


The main goal of the project, led by Matthias vom Hau, Associate Professor at IBEI, is to challenge the notion that ethnic diversity dampens public goods such as healthcare or education. The project’s main goal is to test if considering the historical processes of formation of modern nation-states would prove this negative association as spurious and thus, likely to be incorrect. This would provide new evidence to refute the exclusionary claims advanced by nativist movements.

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