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"The Humanities are as necessary for the development of society as biomedical, technological and business sciences."

The President spoke at the presentation of Institute for Culture and Society at IESE in Barcelona, which was attended by 150 people.

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The President during the presentation in Barcelona of the ICS. PHOTO: Jordi Estruch
11/10/13 11:03 Isabel Solana

"The research in Humanities is as necessary for the development of society as the one in biomedical, technological and business sciences". This was stated by the President of the University of Navarra, Alfonso Sánchez-Tabernero, during the presentation of the Institute for Culture and Society (ICS) at the campus of IESE in Barcelona. 150 people attended the event, in which the eight projects of this interdisciplinary and international research center were explained.

"Research in Humanities and social sciences is cheaper than in other fields, but the return is more complicated. However, at the University we decided to make this commitment because we believe it is necessary to generate proposals from this field that will transform society. For this work we have the support of many friends: companies, institutions and individuals who trust in the great social impact of this project", continued the President.

Alfonso Sánchez-Tabernero stressed that the ICS starts from the same point as the other projects of the University: "It is based on the great proposals of Christian thought, which provides us with light and external and internal coherence". He also highlighted the great diversity of backgrounds of the researchers - 17 nationalities - and the effort to pool knowledge, methods and approaches that are usually separated.

For his part, Jaime García del Barrio, director of the ICS, emphasized the main keys to high school. He mentioned the effort to "attract talent, which is essential to guarantee the quality of the research" and the "dialogue between knowledge, which makes it possible to tackle complex problems such as those posed by the Humanities". To this he added the effort to "translate the results of this work to citizens and decision-makers in public life".

Then, the director of the ICS thanked the presence of Jaume Giró, director executive of La Caixa, and the financial support that the financial institution provides to . La CaixaLa Caixa, and the financial support provided by the financial institution to high school.

Tertulia with researchers moderated by Rafael de Ribot

During the presentation a discussion moderated by the Catalan journalist Rafael de Ribot took place, in which participated the Full Professor of Economics Luis Ravina, director of the Navarra Center for International Development (NCID); Professor Montserrat Herrero, principal investigator of the project 'Religion and Civil Society'; and the Full Professor of Medicine Jokin de Irala, researcher principal investigator of the project 'Education on affectivity and human sexuality'.

Luis Ravina pointed out that the NCID's goal is to fight extreme poverty in the world through science: "Research in social sciences saves a lot of money because it allows us to discover the true root of the problems and find effective solutions".

For her part, Montserrat Herrero pointed out that her line tries to demonstrate the falsity of the theory that proposes that progress and coexistence entail secularization. In this sense, she mentioned that the religious internship is on the rise in many countries and that a Gallup report reveals that less than 10% of Europeans declare themselves atheists.

Jokin de Irala stressed that his team aims to "transform today's sexual Education , which focuses only on biological issues, into a Education of affectivity that prepares for love. The programs of study shows that young people demand more training in this aspect".