At the University of Zaragoza, research is basically carried out through research groups and institutes. There are 227 research groups recognised by the Government of Aragon, which cover all areas of expertise.
An extensive network of university research institutes has also been launched, five of which belong to the university itself (Engineering Research in Aragon, I3A; Biocomputation and Physics of Complex Systems, BIFI; Nanoscience of Aragon, INA; Mathematics and Applications, IUMA; and Environmental Sciences of Aragon, IUCA); three joint (Chemical Synthesis and Homogeneous Catalysis, ISQCH; Material Science Institute of Aragon, ICMA –both with the Scientific Research Council-, and the Centre of Research for Energy Resources and Consumption, CIRCE –with the CIRCE Foundation-); and one affiliated (Zaragoza Logistics Center).
According to the latest report of the 2011 research and knowledge transfer survey of Spanish Universities, the University of Zaragoza is the second Spanish university in terms of the benefits from the exploitation of results, the sixth in terms of the resources obtained through R+D+i contracts financed by public and private entities, the third with regards licence contracts and sixth in terms of obtaining public resources through collaborative research in companies.
The University of Zaragoza is developing several programmes aimed at all members of the university community and graduates for them to turn their innovative ideas into successful business projects.
The SpinUP Programme aims to create and promote technology-based or highly innovative companies. To help develop this programme, the OTRI (The Research Results Transfer Office) has, with the support of the Department of Industry and Innovation of the Government of Aragon, created the "Acelerador SpinUP" assistance programme, with the aim of comprehensively guiding and advising all the members of the University and its spin-offs, with regards creating and promoting companies.
It has also launched the Continuous Programme to permanently advise its entrepreneurs on how to turn an innovative idea into a business model. This programme is held in collaboration with the European Business and Innovation Centre of Aragon, a leading centre for the development and promotion of projects from technology-based companies. One feature of this programme is that it advises and works at the pace set by the entrepreneur, unlike the "Acelerador SpinUP" assistance programme that is more time-intensive.
The University of Zaragoza also works, as part of the Innocampus Programme, on an ambitious project to create joint research centres with companies. These centres will be developed as areas of joint research with companies that will result in research shared between technologists and researchers, which gives considerable added value to the communication and breaches the divide between the business and the university environment. The joint centre will be located on the Ebro River Campus (where most of the scientific-technological institutions and centres of Aragon are found), enhancing the current collaboration infrastructures existing between companies and universities.