The Catalan Observatory is a programme established in 2009 within the European Institute of the London School of Economics. It is sponsored by private and public sources, and it is independently run. Initially, the LSE and the Patronat Catalunya Món (now Diplocat), belonging to the Generalitat de Catalunya, signed an agreement to create the Catalan Observatory in June 2009. Simultaneously, bilateral agreements were equally signed between the LSE and other institutions and companies, such as Abertis Infraestructuras S.A., Foment del Treball Nacional, Àrea Metropolitana de Barcelona, Mediaproducción S.L., Societat Econòmica Barcelonesa d'Amics del País, and Caixa d'Estalvis i Pensions de Barcelona "la Caixa", all of which contributed to consolidate this project. In 2011, the Ajuntament de Barcelona joined the programme, developing a new exciting ‘Barcelona Project’ within the Observatory. From 2012, the projects continues with the Fundació Mies van der Rohe.
The Catalan Observatory at the LSE serves as a platform to foment knowledge and encourage debate about the achievements of and the issues facing Catalan civil society. Its main goals are the projection of Catalonia and its prominent actors in an international context, as well as the promotion, research, debate, and dissemination of the key issues relevant to Catalonia today.
The activities organized by the Catalan Observatory include lectures, conferences and symposia (covering topics such 'Healthcare reforms in UK and Catalonia', 'The Relation between Sports and Economic Development - from ‘Barcelona 1992 to the London Olympics 2012', or 'Historical Memory and Policy Practice'), and the publication of research monographs, newsletters and reports on specific issues. These publications aim to raise awareness about the challenges that globalization and European integration pose to public sector efficiency, private sector competitiveness, the sustainability of the welfare state, and cultural development within Catalonia itself as well as its aspirations to be recognised as a nation. The Barcelona Project focuses on the challenges and achievements of Barcelona as a pioneering urban centre.
2015 supporting institutions:
Fundació Mies van der Rohe - Barcelona
Àrea Metropolitana de Barcelona
Caixa d'Estalvis i Pensions de Barcelona "La Caixa"
Other links of interest in London:
Delegation of the Government of Catalonia to the United Kingdom
Catalan News Agency (CNA)