María José Figueras, new GUNi president


The Rector of the Universitat Rovira i Virgili (URV), María José Figueras, has been appointed President of the Catalan Association of Public Universities (ACUP) and GUNi President for one year. Together with Peter Wells, Chief of the Section for Higher Education at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, she has begun to be part of the GUNi Executive Committee.

Last January 23rd, the new directive board of the Catalan Association of Public Universities (ACUP) was established. María José Figueras, Rector of the Universitat Rovira i Virgili (URV) has been elected President of ACUP. Therefore, she has become the GUNi President for 2020. In this way, María José Figueras takes over Joan Elias, Rector of the Universitat de Barcelona (UB) as GUNi President.

Born in Tarragona in 1956, she graduated from the University of Barcelona in 1979 and was awarded her doctorate by the same university in 1986. She specialised in electron microscopy at the University of Groningen (Holland) and became a member of the teaching staff at the University of Barcelona in 1979.She has spent her entire teaching and research career at the Unit of Biology and Microbiology of the Department of Basic Medical Sciences at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, where she became a tenured lecturer in 1988 and professor of Microbiology in 2001. She has been one of the driving forces behind education in biology and microbiology at the URV, and she has helped to improve the methodology of her subject. Read her biography here.

During the meeting, the members of the new ACUP board were elected as well: Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona's Rector, Margarita Arboix, as first Vice President; the President of the Social Council of the Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF), Montserrat Vendrell, as second Vice-President; the President of the Social Council of the Universitat de Girona, Rosa Nüria Aleixandre, as third Vice-President; and the rector of the Universitat de Barcelona, Joan Elias, who until now was the President and has become the Secretary.


  • UNESCO. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
  • The Catalan Association of Public Universities (ACUP)

Sponsored by

  • Generalitat de Catalunya