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Barcelona Turisme Convention Bureau

Barcelona technology and science

The digital revolution has brought about a major change in the way we work and connect with one another. As a dynamic, inclusive, ambitious and enterprising city, Barcelona is embracing the new digital challenges and looking to the future with a commitment to innovation and technology.


One of Barcelona’s priorities is to become the leading tech hub in southern Europe: 
In 2019, it was the 5th most innovative city in Europe and the 3rd best city for startups (StartUp Heatmap Europe).
The ICT sector creates almost 60,000 jobs in the city and employment for 5.5% of the working population. It represents 4% of the city’s business network.

Talent is a key element of our economy and Barcelona focuses on the potential of people as a driver of social innovation and the competitiveness of businesses. This is why the city is constantly updating its public policies geared to generating, attracting and promoting talent at education and research centres, startups and large enterprises.

22@Barcelona is an example to follow. This innovative technology district has set the benchmark worldwide as a model for urban, economic and social transformation. 22@ Barcelona has launched numerous social and digital transformation initiatives.

Barcelona has a past that is rich in scientific knowledge. The city is currently the top R&D hub in southern Europe and a leader in science-based entrepreneurship. It is also a leading biomedical research hub in southern Europe, and a benchmark city for information technologies, photonics and particle acceleration.
It is currently home to:
8 universities.
31 research centres.
9 science academics and professional associations.

Barcelona is also home to 8 major science and technology infrastructures:
The MareNostrum and Minotauro supercomputers at the Barcelona Supercomputing Center – National Centre for Supercomputing (BSC-CNS).
The sequencing platform of the National Centre for Genome Analysis (CNAG).
The Fabra Observatory. 
University of Barcelona Electron Microscopy Unit Applied to Materials (ELECMI).
Integrated Coastal Infrastructures for Experimentation and Modelling (iCIEM). 
University of Barcelona Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Laboratory (LRM).
Computing infrastructures of the Consortium of University Services in Catalonia (CSUC). 
The ALBA synchrotron in Cerdanyola del Vallès.
Micro and Nanofabrication Clean Room of the Institute of Microelectronics of Barcelona 

Barcelona is a leader in the adoption of information and communication technologies (ICT) and is one of the most dynamic centres in Europe for mobile apps, the internet of things, e-commerce, videogames and big data, while giving support to training future generations:
Barcelona is ranked the 21st best city in the world and the 8th best city in Europe for international students (according QS Best Student Cities) and is the most popular Erasmus destination.
Barcelona has 1,900 startups. 64% of these work in industry 4.0 technologies, particularly in ICT, leisure and health.  
Barcelona is home to several technology hubs, including Pier01; the Barcelona Health Hub, which specialises in digital health and technology applied to medicine; the Barcelona Science Park (PCB), a major centre in the field of bioscience; and the Northern Campus of the Pompeu Fabra University (UPC), which is home to the Barcelona Supercomputing Center.

Science and technology must guarantee the well-being, economic prosperity and safety of the community. With this aim in mind, the local technology sector has made a firm commitment to sustainable solutions applied to healthcare, climate change, leadership in technology, gender equality and the preservation of science and technology.
This spirit of innovation continues to thrive and the desire to apply these breakthroughs to different areas of society have made Barcelona one of the world’s trailblazers for architecture, design, the performing arts, food, sport, tourism, scientific research, knowledge and the social environment. Barcelona was the first city in the world to implement a science and technology diplomacy strategy with the SciTech DiploHub.


Barcelona has become Spain’s tech capital and one of Europe’s leading tech hubs, comparable to cities like London and Berlin. It was the 1st smart city in Spain and the 4th in Europe. It is the world mobile capital and has set the benchmark worldwide in the use of technologies as a means to roll out smart management strategies for the city.  
The city has a state-of-the-art network of infrastructures, such as free Wi-Fi hotspots in every district, an extensive fibre optic network. It is currently the 5G hub for southern Europe


If linking and applying technology to the well-being of society is to be one of the strong points of Barcelona Smart City, it is essential that we put scientific and enterprising talent in touch with industry in order to achieve this goal. That is why Barcelona promotes the digital transformation of society and the business community by bringing manufacturing sectors the latest digital solutions:

Every year, the city hosts the MWC Barcelona, the world’s leading mobile communications event, which has become a trailblazer for innovation and talent. The congress brings together over 70,000 delegates.

4 YFN (4 Years From Now) is the MWC Barcelona startup business platform featuring startup companies from across the globe. With the support of the public and private sectors, MWC Barcelona focuses on four core areas: accelerating innovation through digital entrepreneurship; transforming industries through digital technology;  nurturing digital talent among new generations and professionals; and reflecting on the impact of technology in our society.