It was designated as an “International Excellence Campus” by the Spanish Ministry of Education in 2010. The university is a modern institution based on the model of the high-powered American research university with controlled admissions and an emphasis on rigorous instruction and research.
An internationally renowned institution, UPF has recently been rated as the top Spanish university by the (London) Times Higher Education Supplement, and it is firmly in the upper echelon of Spanish universities in other rating schemes. Academically, it is the only Spanish and Catalan university along with the Autonomous University of Barcelona among the top 150 best in the world according to Times Higher Education academic classification of universities (140th and 147th place respectively) and it is one of the 7 fastest-rising young universities in the world, according to the same ranking. It ranks first in the national ranking of scientific productivity since 2009.
The university has begun to figure prominently in many international rankings. Its studies on the Economics field have been ranked among the top 50 worldwide, 23rd for Economics and Econometrics in the QS World University Rankings by Subject and 40th for Business & Economics in the Times Higher Education Rankings.
The university's Faculty of Economic and Business Sciences is the first and only faculty in Spain (public or private and for any discipline) to be awarded the Certificate for Quality in Internationalization granted by a consortium of 14 European accreditation agencies.
In 2010, the university was awarded as Campus of International Excellence.