History

The beginnings

The beginnings of our Institution can be found dating back to the figure of the Consolat del Mar, an organisation which was established in the ancient territories of the Crown of Aragon at the end of the XIII Century in order to handle commercial and maritime matters, initially for the Mediterranean and later for the Atlantic routes,such as corporative law and which during the Middle Ages gave way to various institutions, such as our Royal Corporation, promoter of the generosity, the spirit of solidarity and vision of the future that the commercial bourgeoisie of Barcelona in the XVIII century showed in its constant desire to create an organisation that was representative of economic activity charged with studying, defending and promoting measures capable of facing up to the economic realities of those times.

The Consolat de Mar was a secular commercial and maritime institution. The statutes included in this book became common law for financial activities

Origins

We have to go back to the 16th of March 1758, when Fernando VI granted formal permission for setting up the Real Junta Particular de Comercio {Royal Private Board of Commerce} in order to be able to find the deepest routes to the promotion of valuable studies and a defending of professional activity. In 1775 several petitions to the Board by groups of businessmen are recorded for research works to be carried out relative to business activity. These aspirations were intermittent realities until on the 26th of April 1787 the Academia de Comercio {The Academy of Commerce} was inaugurated. With this same spirit the Comisión de Fábricas {The Factories Committee} became a reality, a remote antecedent of the Fomento de Trabajo Nacional {National Work Promotion Office} and of the Chamber of Commerce, as well as the Sociedad Económica de Amigos del País {Economic Society of Friends of the Country}, all of which were patrons of the arts and sciences.

Fernando VI, under whose reign the Real Junta Particular de Comercio, predecessor of the Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras, was recognised

 

From that time a very tangible desire was evident for uniting research and teaching with the concern for the economic realities of the era and a willingness for advising Public Bodies. All of which is true to the source of thought and action, a motto which even today is that of the Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras: “Utraque Unum”, emblem of the Spanish colonial coins which the Royal Corporation adopted as its emblem on its seals and its medals.

Throughout the period between the end of the XVIII century and commencement of the XX century political and social movements took place in Spain that caused important imbalances. Encounters between cultures, military confrontations, revolutions and the invasion of foreign troops, caused a breakdown in institutions and led to a confusion with regard to the means aimed at attaining the objectives of creating centres of excellence for the study and dissemination of theoretical and technical elements focused on channelling economic and financial activity towards the progress of society. It was seen that institutions with the same or similar objectives as those of the Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras underwent different levels of fortune, although in many cases their historical evolution is unique: intermittent disappearance and reappearance.

Allegory of the Economy and Finances from a picture dated in the XIX century

Consolidation

With the arrival of the third decade of the XXth century the original idea of the Royal Corporation resurfaced and it acquired the form by which it is known to this day. It stems from conversations held between 1928 and 1931 between a group of intellectuals with their roots embedded in the professional, teaching and research world, concerned by the economic and financial problems of our country, who decided to reactivate the ideas which originally inspired the creation of the Academia de Comercio {The Academy of Commerce}, whilst adapting themselves to the new socio-economic context.
 
In spite of, or maybe as a consequence of, the concerns of an era characterised by a very deep depression, the initial redesigning of the Academy appeared to enjoy the approval and support of very wide circles within Civil Society, in such a way that from 1935, all obstacles were put aside that came in the way of such a long sought after objective. But the Spanish Civil War upset this project and the promoters of the Corporation had to wait until the end of this troubled period when other much more urgent public necessities were resolved.

Maybe it was these hardships, caused by the problems of reconstruction, disruptions suffered by businesses and monetary and credit alterations that were the elements that extended certain dimensions to economic and financial issues whose importance was unknown until this time. The inherent problems of the Second World War did nothing further than to intensify the importance of economic-financial phenomena.

Reverse side of the silver coins minted in Mexico known as “columnarios”. They represent two joined by a great crown between two columns inscribed UTRAQUE UNUM  (both are one). This is the motto of our Royal Corporation

 

Such needs became crystalised in the foundation of the Sociedad Académica de Investigación Económica-Financiera {Academic Society for Economic-Financial Research} in 1940 and by approval in the Byelaws in this year in the name of the Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras {Academy of Economic and Financial Sciences}. On the 19th of February 1943 a Solemn Session took place of the Public Meeting of Constitution at the Ateneo Barcelonés.

The current institution

The activities of the Acdemy continued without interruption for fifteen years, until on the 3rd of January 1958, The National Ministry of Education inaugurated the Order that approved the name from then onwards of the Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras, qualified as an official body of a scientific and technical standing, located in Barcelona.

In the month of November 1975 Juan Carlos de Borbón was proclaimed King. This political transition based on dialogue and consensus  would lead to a system of liberties, reflected in the Spanish Constitution of 1978. Through a Royal Decree 2878/1979 dated December 7, the BOE {Official State Bulletin} of December 29 1979, the Byelaws of the Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras were approved. This was the very first approval of this nature within the category of Royal Decree and by it the Royal Corporation remained under the patronage of His Majesty The King. On the 16th of January 1980 unanimous approval was given to the award of the Medal of Honour to His Majesty King Juan Carlos I (the photograph below shows the award of the Medal of Honour by the Governing Body of the Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras).

Awarding of the Medal of Honour by the Governing Body of the Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras to H.M. King Juan Carlos I

 

Six decades have now gone by since the formulation of the Academic Board of this new era of the Royal Corporation. Profound changes have occurred in social, economic and financial systems. Spain has become a member, with full rights, of the European Union. The introduction of the Euro as the common money constitues a sign that is an invitation to look to the exterior and to seek complicities with prestigious Institutions of other countries. There have been pressures, clashes and changes never before seen in modern history. In spiite of this the Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras has maintained its identity intact and there is no record of any disruption, division and crisis whatsoever.
 

On the 16th of February 2004 the Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras had the honour, for the very first time, of a visit from H.M. King Juan Carlos I. The words which he delivered to the Academics, full of affection towards our Institution, invited us all to continue with our project of delving deeper into the study of economic and financial sciences and to expand the source of knowledge to all countries.

Family photograph of the visit of H.M. King Juan Carlos I to the headquarters of our Royal Corporation

 

International Development

The Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras has placed special attention in promoting scientific cooperation between researchers and academicians of the most important Institutions and Academies of the world, as a projection towards the future, by means of cooperation, interchange of scientific and technical knowledge and joint research between Institutions through the organisation of seminars, conferences, meetings as well as with the interchange of publications and information.

The activities of the Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras are well known in all five continents. Prestigious researchers and exemplary businessmen, theorists and executives of economy and finance from different geographical areas have joined Spanish Academics in the tasks of setting up, divulging and using concepts, methods and techniques, all capable of making the problems that beset the current convulsed society easier to bear. We are encouraged by a common desire: to work in order to leave a better world to future generations, where cooperation between peoples and solidarity among citizens have their rightful place.

 
In recent years we have signed agreements for scientific collaboration with the following institutions:

FONDATION NATIONALE POUR LA SCIENCE ET L’ART
President: Eugen Simion
Date: 28 September 2007

POLISH ACADEMY OF SCIENCES
President: Michal Kleiber
Date: 15 November 2007

MONTENEGRIN ACADEMY OF SCIENCES AND ARTS
President: Momir Djurovic
Date: 30 September 2008

UNIVERSITATEA DE VEST DIN TIMISOARA
Rector: Ioan Mihai
Date: 5 November 2008

THE ROYAL SCIENTIFIC SOCIETY OF JORDAN
President: Princess Sumaya bint El-Hassan
Vice-president: Khalid Zuhair Mohammad Kahhaleh
Date: 28 December 2008

ACADEMY OF SCIENCES AND ARTS OF THE REPUBLIC OF SRPSKA
President: Rajko Kuzmanovic
Date: 22 October 2009

ROMANIAN ACADEMY
President: Ionel Haiduc
Date: 11 February 2010 

NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF BELARUS
President: Mikhail V. Myasnikovich
Date: 3 September 2010

ACADEMIE ROYALE DES SCIENCES, DES LETTRES ET DES BEAUX ARTS
Permanent Secretary: Hervé Hasquin
Date: 21 October 2010

 

The

Real Academia de Ciencias Económicas y Financieras

is the only Royal Corporation in the Spanish State to have its headquarters in Barcelona.

Joint Solemn Academic Session with the Polish Academy of Science of WarsawJoint Solemn Academic Session with the Montenegrin Academy of Sciences and Arts

Instalaciones

Mario Pifarré's Meeting RoomBoard Room
Book of HonourHeadquarters

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