A decade leading industrial doctorate projects in Catalonia

Impact Awards for two doctoral students and a PhD holder from the UPC

The Impact Awards of Industrial Doctorates aim to make visible the impact generated by collaborative research in industrial doctorate projects and to bring this research closer to citizens to identify—current or future—challenges and anticipate its impact. In this edition, two doctoral students and PhD holder from the UPC have won three of four categories of the DI 2012-2022 Impact Awards, which were presented at the Industrial Doctorates Plan’s 10th anniversary ceremony.

Linh Johansson, a doctoral student at the Biomaterials, Biomechanics and Tissue Engineering Group (BBT) and at MimetisBio, won the Impact on Society category. The winner of the Impact on People category was Joel Torres Serra, who completed his doctoral thesis at the UPC’s Barcelona School of Civil Engineering and at Técnicas Mecánicas Ilerdenses SA. And Mahsa Pourmohammad Golloujeh, a doctoral student at the Manresa School of Engineering (EPSEM), won the Proposal for an Industrial Doctorate Project category with the “Construction and Demolition Waste (CDW) Recycling” project.


Year after year, the UPC leads the ranking of projects under the Government of Catalonia’s Industrial Doctorates Plan, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. Over a decade, 257 projects have been carried out at the University, which accounts for 28% of all the projects at Catalan universities.

Oct 16, 2023

The Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya - BarcelonaTech (UPC) is again the leader in Industrial Doctorate projects carried out at Catalan universities, with 25 projects awarded in 2022. Over the 10 years of the Plan, UPC doctoral students have carried out 257 out of 918 projects, i.e. 28% of the total number of projects.

In this period, the Plan has involved 228 UPC thesis supervisors, 96 research groups and 210 companies, resulting in a hundred doctoral theses.

From digital twins to cybersecurity in Industry 4.0
The current projects being developed by UPC doctoral students as part of the Industrial Doctorate Plan include a virtual assistant for industrial processes, digital twins for civil engineering works and buildings and algorithms for analysing soccer patterns.

There is also research on cybersecurity tools for companies, the decarbonization of the automotive industry, 6U satellite technologies and circular solutions in the construction sector, among many others.

LA decade transferring knowledge to industry

Promoted by the Department of Research and Universities of the Government of Catalonia, the Industrial Doctorates Plan has been running for a decade, in which over 900 research projects have been completed with the participation of 600 companies, the 12 Catalan universities and 30 research centres. A ceremony was held to celebrate its 10th anniversary in the Sala Petit Palau at Palau de la Música on 3 October. The event was broadcast live on YouTube.

The plan allows doctoral students to pursue an industrial research or experimental development project at a company or institution, with a three-year contract and a minimum gross annual salary of 22,000 euros. Companies also benefit from working with researchers at the top of their field and at the vanguard of knowledge, who can improve their competitiveness and internationalisation and become strategic partners in the future.

At the UPC, students can take an industrial doctorate on any of the 45 programmes taught at the Doctoral School. They can apply for the Industrial Doctorate mention after finishing their thesis.