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University Ombuds Office

The URV Ombuds Office is the body responsible for defending the rights of all members of the university community.

Why the Ombuds Office was created

The URV created the University Ombuds Office to find new and efficient ways of resolving conflicts at the University by adopting free, swift and flexible procedures.

The URV Ombuds Office is governed by the following principles:

  • Authority rather than power
  • Justice rather than law
  • Humanism rather than bureaucracy

Previous Ombuds

The URV Ombuds Office was created in 1994. The first URV Ombud was lawyer and economist Matias Vives i March, who held the office until November 1999. The next Ombuds were lawyers Isabel Baixeras, Francisco Zapater, Montserrat Boronat and Josep Canício i Querol, who held the office until November 2004, November 2009, November 2014, and November 2019, respectively.

Today, the office and functions of the Ombud are fully consolidated at the URV.

The current Ombud

The office is currently held by Encarnació Ricart Martí, a full professor of Roman Law at the URV who holds a PhD in Law from the University of Barcelona. Early in her career she practised as a lawyer before becoming a tenured university lecturer at the UB. In 1992 she began her long career at the URV as a researcher, professor and administrator before retiring in 2019.

She was one of the first members of the Management Committee of the URV Faculty of Law, the first Head of the Department of Private, Procedural and Financial Law, a member of the Commission set up to draft the URV's first two equality plans and, from 2010 to 2014, vice-rector for Society and Institutional Relations.

She was a principal investigator on five research projects set up by the ministries responsible for Universities and, on three occasions, the recipient of grants from the government of Catalonia's Centre for Legal Studies and Specialized Training..

She has four six-yearly increments for research, six for teaching, and three for administration.

Functions of the Ombuds Office

The URV's Statute entrusts the Ombuds Office to defend the rights of all members of the university community before the University's governing, representative and administrative bodies.

La Sindicatura de Greuges actua d’ofici o a instància de part, quan adverteix la vulneració efectiva d’un dret. La seva actuació no està sotmesa a instruccions de cap autoritat acadèmica o òrgan de govern.

Scope of action

The URV Ombuds Office's scope of action is the same as the University's. When the action required exceeds this scope, the Office may refer the interested party to other bodies responsible for defending citizens' rights.

Extent of action

The Ombuds Office responds to requests or complaints when it recognizes that a violation of rights may have occurred at the URV. It does not accept anonymous complaints nor does it accept those without basis or foundation. The Office cannot intervene in court matters or disputes pending judicial resolution

Once the Ombuds Office has agreed to process a complaint or request for mediation, it carries out actions to reach a compromise over the conflicts involved.

If it proves impossible to agree on mediation or settlement, the Ombuds Office intervenes before the University's governing, representative or administrative bodies by making recommendations

Designation and control

The University Ombud is a professional of recognized prestige who is not a member of the university community. He or she is chosen by the University Senate according to a three-fifths majority of those present at the session. On receiving a prior report from the URV Social Council, the selection process is begun by the rector, who is also responsible for appointing and discharging the selected candidate. The Ombud is appointed for a five-year term that may not be renewed consecutively.

Registering and complaint

Who can register a complaint?

Complaints to the URV Ombuds Office can be made by any member of the university community, i.e. teachers, students or administration and services staff.

How is a complaint made?

To register a complaint, an interested party must be willing to provide their personal and university information. The complaint must also be accompanied by copies of any relevant documents.

A model complaint form is available for interested parties.

For further information or guidance or to follow up any action undertaken, interested parties may contact the Ombuds Office in person, over the telephone, by written request registered at any university administrative office, by mail or by email.

Model complaint form


  • Encarnació Ricart Martí
    University Ombud
  • C. de l'Escorxador, s/n. 43003 – Tarragona
  • 977 55 8102