Research, transfer and innovation activities are, without a doubt, the ones that generate the most national and international visibility for universities. It is therefore important to present the contributions of Catalan public universities in this field in the form of a report, as has been done regularly in Catalonia since 2012. This report is the sixth edition and includes the most recent data available, namely from 2018, for the whole of the Catalan public university system, and follows the same structure as the previous editions in order to enable comparative assessments over time.
The consolidated structure across the different editions includes an opening chapter that deals with the economic resources raised through competitive funds (obtained from national, state and international calls) and those from non-competitive funds, and makes special mention of the funds raised via the European Horizon 2020 framework programme (H2020) and in the calls of the European Research Council.
The second chapter analyses the scientific production of public universities, which it compares in terms of volume, impact and efficiency on a Catalan, Spanish, European and worldwide scale. This information is complemented by an analysis of the doctoral theses defended as an indicator of the major capacity of Catalan universities to train research staff, with new contents in this edition referring to the theses with international mentions and those defended in the framework of the Industrial Doctorate Plan.
The third chapter is dedicated to innovation and the transfer of knowledge to society. As in previous editions, the analysed indicators are patent and international extension applications, technical staff with transfer functions, start-ups derived from research results, university-company-society chairs and, as a new feature this year, contributions by the private sector to research funding.
Finally, the annex to the report takes stock of all human resources dedicated to research, transfer and innovation, with the inclusion of a gender perspective in a selection of indicators.
In the monograph accompanying this edition, the idea was to emphasise the European Human Resources Strategy for Researchers (HRS4R) and how it has been employed at each Catalan public university, with special attention to the professional development of researchers.
The main source of information for preparing the contents of the report was the Catalan university information system (UNEIX). To contextualise the Catalan experience on a national and international scale, data was obtained from other sources: Centre for Industrial Technological Development (Centro para el Desarrollo Tecnológico Industrial [CDTI]), Institute of Catalan Studies (Institut d’Estudis Catalans [IEC]), European Research Council, CYD Foundation (Fundación CYD), Conference of Spanish University Rectors (Conferencia de Rectores de las Universidades Españolas [CRUE]), Integrated University Information System (Sistema Integrado de Información Universitaria [SIIU]), Web of Science, SCImago Journal & Country Rank, Scopus, SciVal and Eurostat. The digital version of this and previous reports can be downloaded at https://indicadorsuniversitats.cat/en/.