Smart Cities Master at Fundació Universitat de Girona




The master’s programme is organised into two semesters:

1st Block On-site: From 18th October 2017 to 31st of January 2018, on-site weekly courses Wednesday and Thursday from 18 to 21h, Friday from 17 to 21h and Saturday from 9 to 14h.

2nd Block On-line: From 1st of February 2018 to 7th September 2018, on-line development of the city project (February to April) and the master thesis (May to July). The city project practicum work includes 2 visits to the city, one during the first week of February and another one during the last week of March. The master thesis is developed entirely on-line.

The COURSES module consists on 11 courses of 3 credits ECTS each that will be carried out during the first semester. This module requires face to face participation. Students will take the courses at The Montilivi Campus and Science and Technology Park that UdG has in Girona.

33 credits

During the second semester students don’t have to attend lectures. This period is devoted to work on the CITY PROJECT AND MASTER THESIS remotely. Supervisors from both the city and the master will be available to guide the students along the process.

27 credits

About the courses

All the courses and studies will be taught in English. Our lecturers speak Spanish, Catalan and English and they will have no problem in speaking in any of these languages but the courses official language will be English. From all the students that meet with the admission requirements, the master’s direction office will have the last word on the final candidate selection, taking into account their profiles, curriculum vitae and motivations for joining our study (maximum number of spots for the next course is 40).

If you are interested in doing a PhD after the master, our research group EASY offers PhD possibilities to our most valuable students which also share common research lines with us.


Urban Planning and ICT: Concepts and Initiatives (3 ECTS)

Recap on the different urban initiatives towards the Smart City: new urbanism (“smart code”), ruralism, fractal city, sustainable city, livable city, knowledge city, creative city, digital city, smart city. Smart City experiences in the new city and existing city. Case study on a planned city. Case study on a transformed city. Different methodologies for urban planning (systematization, standardization, etc.). Differences between urbanism and urban planning. Study of the concepts: planning 2.0, e-planning, web-based planning, etc.

Lecturer: Dr. Joan Vicente
Profile: PhD in Geography (UAB) and Director of the Department of Geography of the Universitat de Girona. Specialized in urban and strategic planning.

Modeling, Simulation and Optimization (3 ECTS)

Urban simulation techniques (transport, mobility, energy, services, etc.): simulation of space-time dynamics, interaction in simulation models, complex systems modeling and simulation, information theory, complexity and stability of urban systems. Techniques to optimize urban resources (transport, mobility, energy, services, etc.): spatial optimization, route management and optimization, fleet management and optimization, traceability and logistics. traffic management, real time traffic management, eco-driving. Urban (public) transportation intelligent management, parking management and waste management.

Lecturer: Dr. Victor Muñoz
Profile: Computer Scientist (BSc 2005, PhD 2011, MSc 2016), specialized in Artificial Intelligence, with a background of 10+ years in both academic and private sector. Co-founder of a spin-off in the University of Girona since 2011, he has developed several tasks involving planning, coordination and development of AI-based projects. His main research lines are: Robustness, SAT, SAT Modulo Theories (SMT), CSP, COP, combinatorial auctions, complexity theory, multi-agent systems, reputation, trust, planning and scheduling. His current interests also include natural language processing, social networks and blockchain.

The Measurement of Urban Smartness and Urban Sustainability (3 ECTS)

Smart cities build on the sustainable city: existing indicators for the measurement of urban sustainability and needed indicators for the measurement of urban smartness. Representation of the new metrics for the measurement of urban smartness: Neo-geography, Applied Geography, Geo-statistics and spatial simulation, spatial statistical models, space temporal modeling, collaborative mapping, Geo-tagging, Volunteered Geographic Information, ontologies for urban planning, City Gml, maps mash up, tangible maps and planning. Urban systems control: traffic, pollution, smart public watering, timers and programmers complemented with weather forecast, humidity data, etc. to adjust irrigation, etc. Smart environment: Air quality monitoring, water quality, noise, humidity, temperature, night light pollution among others.

Lecturer: Dr. Sergi Nuss
Profile: Sergi Nuss, PhD in Geography and Environmental Science. Sergi is a part time professor on Environmental Policies, Low-carbon and Sustainable Urban Development, and Sustainable Tourism for the Geography Department of UdG. Since 2016 he is member of the steering committee of the Official Master’s Degree in Smart Cities – UdG. Out of the University, Sergi is Project Manager at Pau Costa Foundation, in a project on the introduction of grazing herds in forests as wildfires prevention strategy. He also collaborates with Arrels a Taula, a consultancy working on territory, gastronomy and peasantry projects. Last but not least, Sergi is Board Member and Activist at Associació Naturalistes de Girona, since 1994.

Urban Visualization Techniques (3 ECTS)

Virtual reality and Modeling Techniques. Techniques description: remote sensing, 3D models and urban modeling in general, dynamic modeling, etc. Geo-visual analytics, geo-visualization, visual exploratory data analysis. Visualization and modeling of tracking data. Geographical Information Systems. Geo-localized representation and user maps: data mining representation, ubiquitous mobility representation, high software mobility activity, mobility maps (real time traffic, etc), mapping anonymous data (on urban flows, time patterns, etc.), mixing user maps with open data, deformed maps (maps in continuous deformation according to an specific criteria).

Lecturer: TBA
Email: TBA
Profile: TBA

Data Analysis and Data Mining (3 ECTS)

Data Mining and Machine Learning Techniques: Generic module on Artificial Intelligence describing main Machine Learning and knowledge discovery techniques. Fuzzy and rough set, logics and reasoning and spatial extensions. Ontologies for spatial analysis. Spatial data analysis and exploitation: Spatial data mining and knowledge discovery. Spatial data warehouse and spatial OLAP (On Line Analytical Process). Spatial Decision Support Systems (DSS).

Lecturer: Dr. Andres El-Fakdi
Profile: Assistant professor and researcher in the Department of Electrical Engineering, Electronics and Automation at the University of Girona. Laboratory head and promoter of the Centre EASY research group. He is also a member of the coordination team of the Smart Cities Master Degree of the University of Girona. Electrical Engineering degree from the University of Girona and PhD in computer science from the same university. His research interests are focused in contributing to the development of machine learning techniques for Decision Support Systems (DSS) to increase productivity and effectiveness in complex scenarios. Along the PhD his research has been focused on the study and development of machine learning techniques and its application to robotics. Thus, his PhD successfully concluded with the utilization of learning algorithms to overcome not programmed changes in the environment conditions which lead an autonomous robot to fulfill a particular task. Nowadays, his post-doctoral research is centered in the study of Big/Open Data applications and in the design and development of similar machine learning solutions for knowledge discovery.

Distributed Software Architectures and Multiagent Systems (3 ECTS)

Distributed Software Architectures: services oriented architectures (SOA), event oriented architectures and complex event processing (CEP), multi-agent architectures. Multi-agent Systems: Generic module focused in the agent technology (multi-agent, representation trough agents, etc): urban prediction through agent technology, urban modeling through agent technology, urban simulation through agent technology, public participatory processes with agents, survey scalability with agents, etc.

Lecturer: Dr. Josep Lluis de la Rosa
Profile: Full Professor at the University of Girona (UdG) Spain from 2010 and Rensselaer Institute of Technology (RPI) New York, USA 2008-2010. Director of the Technology Research Center Easy and of the Official Master in Smart Cities of the UdG. MBA of the UdG, PhD in Computer Science from the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB). De la Rosa is expert in intelligent agents, social networks, virtual currencies, and digital preservation and their application to the market. +200 international publications and +20 PhD thesis supervised is part of his contributions. He is a researcher with entrepreneurial vision that has created several spin-off companies starting from the first world robotic soccer team as early as 1996. His research on complementary and virtual currencies started in 2006 and soon later he got fascinated by the disruption of the Blockchain and SmartContracts technologies and their advantages. From then, he has been working on this topic to design new types of money suitable for the Internet in particular and many other of its applications in general.

Monitoring and Energy Efficiency (3 ECTS)

Urban monitoring and control techniques for efficient management of urban resources: Data acquisition in urban and distributed environments, monitoring strategies. Monitoring and control of distributed resources (gas, electrical power, water). Energy efficiency directives. Energy efficiency in buildings (certification, zero emissions, positive energy buildings). Procedures for energy management (ISO50001, procedures for measurement and verification). Energy monitoring techniques: smart grids, smart meters, communication infrastructures, energy efficiency management, active demand management. Technologies for efficient energy consumption (illumination, DHC, HVAC, distribution energy networks, etc.)

Lecturer: Dr. Joaquim Melendez
Profile: He has a B.S. degree in Telecom Engineering, from the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya and a PhD from the Universitat de Girona. He worked as junior research in 1991 at Cognivision research and as electronic engineer between 1991 and 1992 at OPTIMUS SA. In 1992 started the academic career at the University of Girona where in 1999 he won a permanent position at the Department of Electrical, Electronic and Automation Engineering where he has developed his career until now. He has been responsible of several engineering degrees, master programs and coordinator of the PhD Program in Technology at this University from 2007 until 2015. He leads the research group “Control Engineering and Intelligent Systems, eXiT” (, at the Institut d’Informàtica i Aplicacions, focusing his research on data-driven methods for process supervision and decision support with emphasis in applications for power distribution networks and energy efficiency.

Communication and Information Infrastructures (3 ECTS)

Telecommunication networks: Technologies for telecommunication infrastructures, Wireless networks (Wireless LAN -WLAN-, Wi-Fi and HiperLAN -IEEE 802.11 -, Wireless Metropolitan Area Networks (WMAN), MDS, WiMAX, and HiperMAN, etc.), wireless access to public networks, virtual and corporative networks, TCP/IP architecture, internet services, multiservice networks, routing and quality of service resource management, privacy and security. Sensor networks: ZigBee, EnOcean; Personal area networks, Bluetooth, TransferJet, Ultra-wideband (UWB from WiMedia Alliance), web-sensors, etc.

Lecturer: TBA
Email: TBA
Profile: TBA

Social Ubiquitous Technologies and Participation (3 ECTS)

Citizen-centric ubiquitous technologies: Hypermedia technologies, augmented reality, crowd sourcing. Social networks and public participation: e-participation, urban social networks, participation 2.0 (surveys, votes, polls), e-booking, e-payments. E-services and e-government. Infrastructure to support public services: public safety and emergencies, e-health (telemonitoring, telemedicine, teleassistance), e-education, e-administration. Open Government and Open Data: successful experiences, public-private data collaboration, data protection, data reliability and security.

Lecturer: Dr. Victor Torres
Profile: Dr. Victor Torres-Padrosa holds a PhD in Telecommunication Engineering from Universitat Pompeu Fabra in 2008. He previously worked as a postdoctoral researcher and lecturer at Universitat de Girona at the Broadband Communications and Distributed Systems (BCDS) research group. Former assistant professor at Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya from 2010 to 2011, visiting assistant professor at Universitat Pompeu Fabra from 2008 to 2010 and member of the Distributed Multimedia Applications Group (DMAG) research group from 2003 to 2011. Technical coordinator and researcher in several European and national research projects in open innovation, digital rights management (DRM), intellectual property rights, metadata, multimedia content representation and distribution, security, distributed applications, social networks and recommendation, such as NIR-VANA, AXMEDIS, VISNET-II, VISNET, VARIAZIONI and MIREIA. He has contributed to the ISO/IEC 21000 (MPEG-21) standard. He has co-authored several papers published in international journals and presented in leading international conferences. He has acted as a reviewer for IEEE Multimedia, Computer, ETRI journal and El profesional de la informacion. He currently works as RDI Manager at TECNIO Centre Easy (Universitat de Girona).

New Urban Economics and City Marketing (3 ECTS)

New models and opportunities for urban business: Utility-based theory (based on probabilities of occurrence, can help to explain choices that seem to contradict the expected value criterion), Wikinomics, Socialnomics, WikiCities, Crowdfunding, Lean City, Outernet and shytech (how will change marketing in the future), the urban 4C’s: credit, confirmation, consideration, conversion (from “promise” to “project” for urban identity and urban image achievements), Economic dynamics for Smart Cities. Urban entrepreneurship: how to turn urban needs into business opportunities, urban innovation comes from citizens’ needs. Business Modeling applied to city-related entrepreneurial ideas.

Lecturers: Dr. Andrea Bikfalvi and Mr. Marc Pons
Email: –
Profiles: Andrea Bikfalvi is teaching and research staff in the Department of Business Administration and Product Design at the University of Girona (Spain). She holds a PhD in Business Administration. She is currently the deputy director of the Chamber of Commerce Chair of Family Business at the same university. During her trajectory she conducted several research projects for the regional government of Catalonia, Spain, as well as a series of EU projects. Her main research interest is in holistic approaches of innovation in all types of organizations –mainly, but not limited to- public administration, private enterprises and education. She published research in international journals such as Technovation, Service Business, European J. International Management, Journal of Organizational Change Management and the Journal of Family Business Strategy.
Marc Pons is a freelance telecom engineer (UPC & U.Paris X) who’s also part time teaching as assistant lecturer in the Department of Business Administration and Product Design at the University of Girona (Spain). He has a post grade of Telecommunications Infrastructures and he holds several masters: MBA (UB-UAB-UPC), Business Innovation and Technology Magnagement (UdG) and Tourism Management and Planning (UdG). He has made some research as part of his in progress PHD in the field of green manufacturing, green product innovation and Energy efficiency, that has been published in international journals as Journal of Cleaner Production or InTech books. He has experience in Spain and abroad in the private sector as an engineer (MATRA-Aerospatiale-EADS). He also knows the public sector as a provider of systems and solutions but also as a board member of public companies (FISERSA) and professional organizations.

Expert Seminars (3 ECTS)

Monothematics of expert knowledge.


City Project (12 ECTS)

The city project is a supervised practical work integrated inside the master’s structure as a subject carried out during the second half of the study. The city project consists on a training activity where the students apply the knowledge acquired during the first block courses to find solutions to real problems demanded by real cities. The city project practical experience has a duration of 3 months where the students, master advisors and city tutors work on-site and on-line with their projects (2 visits to the city during the 3-month period, one at the kick off and another in the mid-term). The project finishes with a document and oral presentation of the results obtained.

Master Thesis (12 ECTS)

The final master thesis is a supervised practical work integrated inside the master’s structure as a subject carried out during the second half of the study, immediately after the conclusion of the city project. This work pretends to be an initiation to the student’s research career or professional exercise where the students consolidate the acquired knowledge and demonstrate their capabilities in a particular field. Usually, the student continues the work carried out in their city projects to complete their master thesis. Therefore, the city project is extended from a research work point of view with more theoretical and analysis content, away from the innovation business solution frame where the city project is encased. The master thesis finishes with a document and oral presentation of the results obtained.

Final Workshop (3 ECTS)

City project presentation in an avant-garde research context. Sessions open to professionals with specific sessions for post-doc students. Particular assessment of the Master Thesis with external review process.