Catalonia has a great tradition of scientific research. All fields of research are represented in Catalonia to some degree, both in the generation of knowledge and in its application. We can point out, for example, research in ecology, a product of the school created by scientist Ramon Margalef, who has an international award in his name for environmental sciences promoted by the Generalitat. There are also the groups dedicated to palaeontology, with obvious figures such as Eudald Carbonell and Salvador Moyà, linked to the exceptional sites of Atapuerca and the abric Romaní de Capellades respectively.
It currently stands out in the bioscience field, as the research carried out in its extensive hospital network (more than 60 centres) is complemented with the activity of universities, biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, and technological parks.
Barcelona Clinical Trials Platform (BCTP) is a strategic instrument promoted by the Catalan Health Department at the Government of Catalonia and Biocat (the organization that coordinates and promotes the life sciences sector in Catalonia), to improve the coordination, integration, quality, and speed of clinical trials in the region.
Centres such as the CRG (Centre for Genomic Regulation), the CMRB (Centre for Regenerative Medicine in Barcelona), the IDIBAPS (Institute for Biomedical Research August Pi i Sunyer), and the IRB (Biomedical Research Institute) are some of the more than 150 centres that bring together over 400 research groups in life sciences. Some of the well-known names working in this sector are oncologist Josep Baselga, cardiologist Lina Badimon, biologist Anna Veiga and Juan Carlos Izpisúa and biochemists Joan Massagué and Fàtima Bosch. The BioCat organisation, mobilised by the Generalitat, groups and promotes the biomedicine cluster in Catalonia, which is known as the Bioregion.
Regarding to social sciences, we can note the communication groups in the Autonomous University Barcelona or the Internet Interdisciplinary Institute (IN3) of the UOC. In total, over 25,000 people work as researchers in Catalonia, which has about a thousand consolidated research groups and which, according to data from the Institute for Scientific Investigation, publish around 5,000 articles in international magazines, a figure higher than many European countries.
One of the major successes of the science policy in Catalonia is the Icrea programme, which gives grants to researchers from all over the world to come and work in Catalonia. The science policy is coordinated through research plans established by the Generalitat, the Spanish Government and the European Union through the Framework programmes. Catalonia is the autonomous community that receives the most financing in the majority of state and European competitions.