Manuel Castells Oliván (Spanish: [kasˈtels]; Catalan: [kəsˈteʎs]; born 9 February 1942) is a Spanish sociologist especially associated with research on the information society, communication and globalization. In January 2020, he was appointed Minister of Universities in the Sánchez II Government of Spain.He is Full Professor of Sociology, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC), in Barcelona. He is as well University Professor and the Wallis Annenberg Chair Professor of Communication Technology and Society at the Annenberg School of Communication, University of Southern California, Los Angeles. He is Professor Emeritus of Sociology, and Professor Emeritus of City and Regional Planning at the University of California, Berkeley, where he taught for 24 years. He is a fellow of St. John’s College, University of Cambridge. Professor Castells hold the chair of Network Society, Collège d’Études Mondiales, Paris.
The 2000–2014 research survey of the Social Sciences Citation Index ranks him as the world’s fifth most-cited social science scholar, and the foremost-cited communication scholar.He was awarded the 2012 Holberg Prize, for having “shaped our understanding of the political dynamics of urban and global economies in the network society.” In 2013 he was awarded the Balzan Prize for Sociology.