Presentation from Fundación Ignacio Larramendi (2011 edition)

Lourdes Martínez Gutiérrez
Widow of Hernando de Larramendi
President of the Ignacio Larramendi Foundation


Fotografía de una escultura de Francisco de Vitoria en la Universidad de SalamancaWhoever reads these lines may easily believe me that it is particularly gratifying for me to present this project, which is the result of the collaboration of the MAPFRE Foundation and the Ignacio Larramendi Foundation. I had so many years of working closely with my husband, both in the company that he was able to set up as well as in his most personal initiatives, that I have the impression that he has not stopped participating in this collaboration and, above all, that I am following the line that we set out so many years ago and in which I see the participation of my children with great satisfaction and pride. Ignacio was not only an excellent manager and from this we have the indisputable reality of MAPFRE to prove it, but also a man of ideas. He knew clearly that civil society should work together to bring to fruition initiatives that would benefit society as a whole. And so, from the very beginning, he increased all kinds of foundations at MAPFRE, which have always been characterised by their good work and that have recently merged, thus giving special prominence to the founding ideas that Ignacio had deeply rooted in his thinking in the management of MAPFRE itself.

Many of them were related to America and it is not a question of listing them here, as the MAPFRE Tavera Foundation itself has dedicated a memorable book to recapitulating them. This project that we present today has a lot to do with America, since America was a touch piece to awaken a multitude of ideas in the minds of the best Spanish thinkers of the time, which have proved to be especially productive.

Although this fact is undisputed today, there is still much grain to be sown and the MAPFRE Foundation and the Ignacio Larramendi Foundation have created this new virtual library of the School of Salamanca for this purpose, dedicated precisely to it, to the texts, which are many, and to the relations between them, which are even more and not always well known.

Ignacio, like me, always believed that the mechanization of the processes, and he said this explicitly in more than one document, was essential to carry out any kind of initiative and, in fact, he knew how to foresee that in order to carry out those he had instituted for the Ignacio Larramendi Foundation, it was necessary to have a company that in its origin was called DIGIMAP and today DIGIBIS and whose shares are almost entirely owned by the Ignacio Larramendi Foundation. Thus, the Foundation, through its Board of Trustees, establishes the guidelines and sets the objectives that the Foundation must achieve each year, as well as the resources necessary to make them a reality. We knew in the Board of Trustees of the Ignacio Larramendi Foundation that in order to be able to show not only the works of the authors of the so-called School of Salamanca, but also the relations existing between them, we needed a special economic contribution. My son Luis, executive vice-president of the Ignacio Larramendi Foundation, took action and began negotiations with the MAPFRE Foundation to obtain these extra resources. And so, first with José Luis Catalinas, my husband's direct collaborator for so many years, and then with Alberto Manzano, with whom I have such a close friendship, it was possible to finance a truly advanced project that is not by chance being endorsed internationally by those institutions that have the capacity to do so.

In the next four years we will show off our technical and intellectual know-how with projects that we will agree on between both foundations, but among which, as the reader can imagine, the Toledo School of Translators will not be missing; the Constitutionalism of 1812 and its repercussions in Latin America and many European countries; Roman Hispania, so fertile; the forgotten Spanish Natural Sciences that reached their peak with the description of what for Europeans was unknown in the flora and fauna of Europe, Asia and Oceania, the Novatores, the almost completely unknown Spanish cultural strength of the Visigothic period, the controversy of Spanish science... That is to say, so many aspects that will have to be covered not only by the rigorous study of the texts but also by the application of the latest advances in information and communication technology, according to the principles that govern what is now beginning to be known as 'digital humanism'.

None of this could be done without the fundamental action of the company to which I have referred. I am also moved to remember that it is my daughter Tachi Hernando de Larramendi who every day manages to get a small Spanish company to provide dozens of institutions in all parts of Spain, and now also in Europe and soon in America, with results that are perfectly comparable to those of very important institutions and much greater resources in various degrees of magnitude. DIGIBIS is, even in these times of crisis, a company that, although it is not become profitable, does not diminish the capital of the Ignacio Larramendi Foundation either and if we were to sum up in a single sentence, the modernity and audacity of its IT developments, I will limit myself to remembering that more than a third of its turnover is approved by the national rating agencies as R&D&I activities.

Madrid, 17 November 2011

Feast of Saint Theodore of Amasea and
25th Anniversary of the constitution of the Ignacio Larramendi Foundation before a notary