Culture, society and language

This studies the social and cultural transformations linked to globalization and the articulation of the Internet. It brings together a number of research groups that analyse the discourses that represent or constitute intercultural relations, the construction of otherness, colonialism and post-colonialism, gender relations and social inequalities in general. It similarly tackles the study of language from applied perspectives of a social nature or in relation to its uses in technology. It also stresses the study of subjectivity through emotions and consumer practices. All types of literary texts, artistic productions, essays and social interactions practices and their results in the form of documentation, records, recordings, databases and corpus are analysed. Humanistic methods of comparative literature, aesthetics, history, linguistics, philosophy and cultural studies are adopted and combined in an interdisciplinary way, as well as social sciences methods such as sociology and anthropology.

Research groups and topic areas / Thesis proposals


Research group websites

ALTER |Crisis, Otherness and Representation

The researchers in this group study the following subject areas:

1)  Intercultural representations, particularly those linked to the literature, philosophy and history of Eastern Asia.

2)  Otherness, crisis, modernity, discourse, colonialism, post-colonialism, transnationalism and globalization.

3)  Orientation: comparative literature, history and philosophy.

Dr Martnez Robles, David


GENTIC | Relations between Gender and ICT in the Knowledge Society

The gender and ICT research group addresses the gender relations in the design, development and use of scientific and technological innovations across lifetime. We study various ways in which gender interacts with other structural and individual factors and triggers inequalities in access and progression in scientific and technological studies and occupations. In addition, we examine the effect of gendered innovations in the achievement of progress happening in the information society. To do this, we apply different qualitative and quantitative research methods (longitudinal and cross-sectional), consistent with the most recent technological and social developments. The researchers of this group study the following topics:

1.    Differences between men and women in aspects related to the use, access, and acquisition of digital skills across their lifetime.

2.    The development of gender roles and stereotypes regarding studies and occupations during childhood and adolescence.

3.    Gendered factors shaping the motivations of secondary school students to choose courses of study and professions (particularly in the fields related to science and technology).

4.    Main barriers to women's access and advancement to managerial positions in scientific and technological fields.

5.    Gender in innovation and the knowledge economy.

6.    The impact of gender stereotypes in team work, collaboration and efficiency, mainly linked to scientific and technological fields.

Dr Sinz Ibez, Milagros GENTIC

GlobaLS | Global Literary Studies Group 

The Global Literary Studies Research Group (GlobaLS) addresses literary history from a global perspective, i.e. as a research approach that looks at cross-border cultural and literary phenomena beyond national frameworks. We have four main objectives: 1) To critique the notion of the “global” so as to apply it to Literary Studies, by taking on new analytical units such as cities, regions, rivers, seas, and oceans; 2) To promote the global study of literature from an interdisciplinary perspective, 3) To analize literary processes, places and actors at a local and global scale through different case studies, and 4) To develop the global study of literature using macro- and micro-historical analyses and computational tools within a Digital Humanities framework. We work with three research foci: Global Literary Environments, The Global Novel and Global Translation Flows.
  1. Global Studies
  2. Comparative Literature
  3. Literary History
  4. Translation Studies and Sociology of Translation
  5. Studies of the Novel and Narrative Theory
  6. Cultural Mediation and Cultural Transnational Phenomena
Dr. Roig Sanz, Diana  

GRECS | Studies of Culture and Society 

Researchers in this group explore how individuals experience and construct social differences and inequalities from a cultural perspective, and how these processes contribute to their production. This shared orientation is addressed via a relational overview of cultures, identities, experiences and social structure, and it may involve the following themes:

1.    Social imaginaries and social theory
2.    Emotions
3.    Morality
4.    Taste
5.    Production and consumption of popular culture
6.    The political economy of the technological mediation of culture.

Dr Cant Mil, Natlia GRECS

GRIAL| Linguistics Applications Inter-university Research Group

This inter-university group is devoted to research in applied linguistics in a wide sense. Its UOC members focus on the three subject areas listed below; thus, these are the only subject areas included in the Information and Knowledge Society doctoral programme:

1.    Conceptual metaphor and mental health.
2.    Translation technologies.
3.    Natural language processing.

The central aim of (1) is to analyse texts produced in the Internet (blogs, social networks) by individuals affected by mental disorders, in the light of the Conceptual Metaphor Theory. Other topics at the crossroads of cognitive linguistics and the information and knowledge society are also being explored. (2) and (3) are devoted to the application of linguistics to computer-based language processing methods and resources, specially focusing on multilingual texts.

Dr Climent Roca, Salvador


Heritage in confict 

Case studies on the reasons for wars and their consequences on the world's cultural heritage, and the illegal traffic of art works from archaeological sites.

Dr. Munilla, Gloria


History books and textual criticism. Editing systems and processes.  Dr. Gassol, Olivia  

Hypertextual cyberculture and new art forms in hyperspace

Dr Camps Montaner, Joan


IDENTI.CAT |Language, Culture and Identity in the Global Age

This is an interdisciplinary group of sociologists, historians and specialists in literature and cultural studies that focuses on processes of construction of identity and the articulation of subjectivities, with a predominant focus on Catalan identity.

We explore how contemporary globalization – characterized by growing mobility, outsourcing of the economy, consumerism and digital networking – causes profound changes in the way people and organizations articulate a sense of belonging to society and institutions, and transforms the ways in which people construct their subjectivities through art, literature, film and other forms of expression.

The researchers in this group study the following subject areas:

1)  Sociolinguistics.
2)  The construction of historic memory.
3)  The uses of the past in Catalan literature.
4)  Cultural management and heritage.
5)  Orientation: literary studies, cultural studies, anthropology, history.

Dr Pujolar, Joan  IDENTI.CAT
Lexical neology: typology, resources and motivations associated with the creation of new words in languages Dr. Domnech, Ona  
Literature studies: from traditional texts to digital writing  Dr. Iribarren Donadeu, Teresa  

OSI | Open Science and Innovation 

OSI is a research group devoted to the study of open science, technology and innovation. We are particularly interested in those initiatives and projects involving (a) lay people or unofficial experts in building scientific knowledge or technical artefacts and (b) new configurations between science and society. Our aim is to analyse how public participation and broader social engagement impact the construction of science and technology.  Our analytical background is based on current Science and Technology Studies (STS), an interdisciplinary field that studies social and political factors shaping present science and technology. These are our present lines of research:

1) Commons-based peer production for science & technology.
2)  Wikipedia, academia and public communication of science.
3)  Open technology in hackerspaces, makerspaces and fablabs.
4)  Citizen science and lay expertise
5)  Open innovation and knowledge sharing.

Dr. Aibar, Eduard OSI

Virtual communities: expert knowledge, social support systems and collective identities

Dr Vayreda Duran, Agns