Barcelona as the global capital of higher education

Barcelona will be hosting the UNESCO World Higher Education Conference from 18 to 20 May, becoming the first city to present the event outside of Paris, where this international organisation is based. Over 2,000 people from all over the world will be taking part in person, along with over 8,000 in a virtual capacity.

13/05/2022 - 16:38 h - Education and studies Ajuntament de Barcelona

The goals of the UNESCO World Higher Education Conference (WHEC2022) are to rethink ideas and practices in higher education to the guarantee sustainable development of the planet and humanity, offering an opportunity for global discussion fuelled by various narratives about higher education.

UNESCO will be using the WHEC2022 to present the roadmap for the university sector for the next ten years, to make it a key actor in the face of the current difficulties and social and healthcare crises.

In this respect, and capitalising on the momentum offered by hosting the UNESCO event, Barcelona aspires to become the global university capital: the city will monitor the conclusions and recommendations from the WHEC2022 and launch innovative programmes with a high social impact, driven by the various institutions here.

Events all around the city

The conference also provides the context for World Higher Education Week, with fifteen events around the city organised by 22 local and international institutions.

Also worth noting is the presentation of the new GUNi World Report, which over ninety experts from around the world were involved in. Its goal is to reflect on how universities need to be transformed to address new social, economic, cultural and tech challenges, to meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the 2030 Agenda.

The local organiser of the World Higher Education Week is the Global University Network for Innovation (GUNi), chaired and coordinated by the Catalan Association of Public Universities (ACUP), with the direct support of the Government of Spain, the Government of Catalonia and Barcelona Provincial Council, as well as the City Council.

You can find the full programme for World Higher Education Week here.