Centro de Estudios Avanzados en Ciencias Sociales Instituto Juan March de Estudios e Investigaciones
José Ramón Montero
(Centro de Estudios Avanzados en Ciencias Sociales), officially opened in
September 1987, forms part of the Instituto Juan March de Estudios e Investigaciones,
a private research institute founded in October 1986 and recognized by the
Spanish Ministry of Education and Science.
The principal objective of the Centre is to undertake fundamental research in the social sciences. All the activities of the Centre, including postgraduate teaching, are conceived and developed in order to pursue this goal. Research carried out at the Centre is essentially concerned with the study of the structure and evolution of advanced contemporary societies, their political systems, economies, and cultural and historical roots. Hence the Centre focuses on the analysis of topics such as the institutional conditions for economic modernization, political and sociological aspects of internationalization and regionalization, the current redefinition of the welfare state, and the bases for the legitimacy of liberal democracies and market economies. Research concentrates on the geographical and cultural area of Europe.
Given the particular importance which the Centre attaches to research, the teaching programme pays special attention to questions of social science methodology. The core disciplines are Sociology and Political Science; however, an interdiciplinary approach is fostered. Comparative analysis is a feature of research carried out at the Centre and is fostered through extensive international links maintained with other research teams.
The Centres study programme consists of two distinct stages: the first one leads to the Masters degree, and the second one to the doctorate.
The first stage spans two academic years. Students take a number of methodological, empirical and theoretical courses in the fields of Sociology and Political Science as well as two background courses in economics. The purpose of the Masters stage is to prepare students for the second stage, the doctorate. It is designed to provide students with a well-rounded and systematic knowledge of the social sciences and research methods which will enable them to begin their thesis.
The second stage is dedicated to the completion of a doctoral thesis with a comparative and analytical approach based on empirical research. Before moving on to this second stage, students must obtain the degree of Master in Social Sciences of the Institute Juan March and demonstrate their ability to carry out and present a thesis proposal which falls within the Centres research profile.
At present there are twelve students in the Masters programme and eighteen in the Doctoral programme. Fourteen students have successfully defended their doctoral thesis and have been granted the title Doctor Miembro del Instituto Juan March.
The Centre specializes above all on comparative political studies in the European perspective. At present, the permanent members of the faculty are mainly working in five interrelated areas. The first one is comparative sociology of economic policies. It encompasses the analysis of the influence of regimes, governments, institutions, and ideologies on economic policies and examines the way in which economic results influence politics and support for governments. The second area of research analyses the connections between equality, economic development and social policy. One of the most important connections is the evolution of European Welfare States.
Thirdly, faculty members are also involved in research on electoral behaviour and the comparative analysis of the social, party and ideological factors which influence the electoral preferences of the citizens of Western Europe, above all those of Southern Europe. They also work on related questions such as the territorial dimensions of political attitudes and institutional aspects of electoral systems.
The fourth area of research focuses on the study of those organizations which are connected with the productive system in contemporary societies (trade unions, employers and professional associations), their role in periods of rapid economic change, and the impact of post-industrial unemployment in post-industrial societies.
Finally, research done by the Centres teaching staff is concerned with democratization processes in Europe. Their work on the political transition in Spain has nourished an interest in changes currently taking place in Central and Eastern Europe, above all the evolution of parties and party systems, the character of political cultures before and after transitions, and economic and social reforms.
The Centre welcomes scholars whose research areas coincide with those of the Centre. While space is limited at the library, visitors are given complete access to the library's services and are welcome to attend the public lectures and seminars. We usually have from six to twelve visiting scholars at the Centre at a time, and their stays vary from one week to one year. The library assists visitors in identifying other research library collections in Spain which might be useful and writes letters of introduction to the directors of such libraries.
Scholars interested in working at the Centre should write to José María Maravall, Director Académico, and describe their research projects, send a curriculum vitae, and include the dates of their visits.
The Centres library holds a collection of more than 35,000 volumes and more than 550 journals and periodicals as well as a large number of electronic databases. The library was established in 1987. Due to a 6,000 volume donation of the research library of the Banco Urquijo covering the period from the 40s to the mid-80s, the collection has more historical depth than its age suggests. The librarys holdings both reflect the study and research interests of the Centre and provide supporting material in the fields of history, economics, law and political philosophy.
The library is connected to INTERNET as well as to other Spanish and international information networks. As a member of the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR), it also has access to the ICPSR databases and collections.
The library offers interlibrary loan and photocopying services via the British Library and a number of other libraries both in Spain and abroad. It participates in the avtivities of the European Cooperation in Social Science Information and Documentation Group as well as in other cooperative information activities in Spain and Europe.
On the Centre's web page (http://www.march.es/ijm/ceacs/texten.htm) the library publishes its list of periodical publications holdings and a monthly acquisition bulletin. Plans for putting its catalogue, which is now available online internally, on the Internet will be realized in 1997.
Each year the Centre publishes a number of Estudios Working Papers in order to make the work of the Centres scholarly community available to a wider academic public. This series includes papers written both by professors, researchers and students at the Centre and by others who participate in its activities. A list of papers is provided on the Centres web page; for those published from 1995 onwards full text versions are available.
Within the Doctoral Thesis Series a limited number of the theses sucessfully defended by the Centres students is published. They are available to interested academic circles. This series currently comprises fourteen doctoral theses.
Public lectures, research seminars and workshop luncheons
In addition to its research and teaching activities, the Centre hosts a number of public and private events including lectures, research seminars and workshop luncheons. Speakers are invited from Spain and from abroad and include leading scholars and specialists in a number of academic disciplines as well as prominent public figures.
Administration and faculty
The Centres activities are supervised by the Board of Trustees of the Instituto Juan March. The Scientific Committee is responsible for the overall supervision of the doctoral research carried out by students at the Centre. It also collaborates with the Instituto Juan March regarding the definition of the overall research and academic orientation of the Centre.
The Scientific Committee is formed by the following professors: Gøsta Esping-Andersen (Professor of Sociology, Università di Trento, Italy), Juan José Linz (Sterling Professor of Political and Social Science, Yale University), José Maria Maravall (Professor of Sociology at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid and Honorary Fellow of St. Antonys College, Oxford University), José Ramón Montero (Professor of Political Science at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid), Adam Pszeworski (Professor of Political Science and Economics, New York University), Steven Rosenstone (Professor of Political Science, University of Minnesota) and Vincent Wright (Fellow of Nuffield College, Oxford University).
The Administrative Director of the Centre is Javier Gomá, the Academic Director is José María Maravall. The permanent members of the faculty are José María Maravall, José Ramón Montero, Modesto Escobar (Professor of Sociology and Head of the Department of Sociology of the School of Social Sciences, Universidad de Salamanca), Andrew Richards (Centre for Advanced Studies in Social Sciences) and Mariano Torcal (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid). The Director of the library is Martha Peach, the librarians are Almudena Knecht and Jesús Cuéllar.
For further information please contact:
Prof. José Ramón Montero
Professor José Ramón Montero is a member of the Scientific Committee of the Centre, a permanent member of the faculty, and Professor of Political Science at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid.