Grup de Recerca en Estudis Locals

Welcome to the GREL website!

GREL stands for Grup de Recerca en Estudis Locals, which is the Catalan form for Research Group on Local Studies. The GREL is part of the Political Science Department of the University of Barcelona, and most of its  members are actually located in the Faculty of Law of this university. Our research group was awarded and funded as an Emergent Research Group in political science by the Catalan Government (Generalitat de Catalunya, SGR 357, 2009), and it has been recently consolidated and funded in 2014 (Generalitat de Catalunya, SGR 838, 2014). We also have been funded by the Spanish Government with the project titled "Una nueva arquitectura local: eficiencia, dimensión y democracia", together with the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid.

Our foundational scope is the study of Catalan local governments, but its members are carrying out their research from a broader perspective that implies  comparative reserarch regarding Spanish, European, and International local government models.

The activities carried out within the GREL are organized into a number of research lines devoted to emergent and relevant research areas, promoting interdisciplinary collaboration and social and institutional prospective work. These activities  may be thus presented in a three-fold general research program:

1) Local government structure and its political and administrative operation.
2) The influence of demographical and geographical variables on local democracy.
3) Service provision and local public policy issues.

In addition, the GREL has three main strategic objectives:

a) The promotion of empirically-based methogological models in social sciences, specifically aimed at the study of local government and institutional analysis. This objective implies the design, development, and improvement of existing methodological tools in order to achieve excellence and scientific advance that enables further collaboration with scientists with different backgrounds and research scopes.

b) Keep being a significant spot in the map of the most competent research groups in this area and strengthen our role as partners in potential collaborative research projects.

c) Gather and share the results of our research through the provision of models and tools that may be applied in local government-related institutional architecture and engineering.

This website is aimed at both  making you familiar with our activities, and allowing further interchange of knowledge and ideas on local government among students, experts, scholars, polititians, and citizens at large.