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The president's area Career

The president of the UOC, Josep A. Planell

Josep A. Planell Estany (born Barcelona, 1951) graduated in Physics from the University of Barcelona in 1975 and earned his doctorate in Materials Science from Queen Mary, University of London in 1983. Since 1992 he has been a full professor in the Materials Science and Metallurgy department of the Barcelona School of Industrial Engineering at the Universitat Politcnica de Catalunya (UPC).

He was director of the Centre of Research for Biomedical Engineering (CREB) at the UPC from its creation in 1997 until 2006, and during that time was also director of the Centre of Reference in Bioengineering of Catalonia (CREBEC) from April 2003 until December 2005. That same month saw the creation of the Institute of Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC), of which Planell was the director until April 2013, when he took office as president of the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya.

In 2013 he was presented with the George Winter Award from the European Society for Biomaterials, becoming the first scientist from Spain ever to receive it.

Dr Planell was also a recipient of the Government of Catalonia’s Distinction for Promoting University Research in 2001, and the City of Barcelona award in the category of technological research in 2006. He has been a member of the Royal European Academy of Doctors since 2006 and is also a member of the Royal Academy of Sciences and Arts of Barcelona.

He has served as vice-president of the European Society for Biomaterials and as editor-in-chief of the Journal of Materials Science: Materials in Medicine. He is on the editorial board for a number of scientific journals.

His main areas of research are biomaterials and tissue engineering for applications in regenerative medicine. 

He has authored or co-authored more than 270 articles published in nationally and internationally indexed journals, and around 100 more in non-indexed journals. He has also published more than 300 abstracts and proceedings in conferences, congresses and symposia.

Dr Planell has registered ten Spanish patents, and has directed and supervised thirteen doctoral theses, all of which received the highest possible marks.

As regards his research work, he has been lead scientist on ten projects funded by the Spanish government, and was coordinator for a STReP project funded by the European Commission.