Photograph of Luis Antonio Miguel Quintales, courtesy of the awardee, accompanied by the logo of the International Prize Grupo Compostela-Xunta de Galicia.

The award ceremony will be held on 21 September at the University of Seville.

The jury of the XXVII International Prize Grupo Compostela-Xunta de Galicia recognises the professor of the University of Salamanca Luis Antonio Miguel Quintales as a key figure in “the enhancement of the Camino Torres”, a route that recovers the path taken in 1737 by the scholar Diego de Torres Villarroel on his pilgrimage to Compostela. The members of this body also highlighted his contribution to the recovery and transmission of the “itineraries of the Camino de Santiago that had been forgotten”.

After being informed of the decision, the laureate explained that “this recognition represents a significant milestone” in his personal career, as well as it “fills him with gratitude and emotion” to know that his efforts have been honoured in this way. “To see my work in the creation and dissemination of the Camino Torres valued by the jury of such a prestigious award is an incomparable honour”, he added.

Miguel Quintales will receive a cash prize of 6,000 euros gross and the golden shell, the emblem of the Compostela Group of Universities (CGU), at the presentation ceremony of the XXVII International Prize Grupo Compostela-Xunta de Galicia. This will take place on 21 September as part of the programme of the XXIX General Assembly of the CGU, organised by the University of Seville (Spain).

Profile of the award winner

Luis Antonio Miguel Quintales, born in the Spanish city of Salamanca in 1962, is a professor in the Department of Computer Science and Automation at the oldest of the existing Hispanic universities. His teaching and research work focuses on the areas of Bioinformatics and Computational Genomics, about which he has published in leading journals in these scientific fields.

He also stands out for his contribution to the study and dissemination of historical and Jacobean routes, through publications such as Ruta del Camino Fonseca. De Salamanca a Santiago de Compostela, which is one of the first guides on the section of the Vía de la Plata that links the capital of the province of the same name with Santiago de Compostela.

Likewise, Miguel Quintales is a key player in the recovery of Jacobean routes that have fallen into oblivion, specifically the Camino Torres. The route was taken up again after an exhaustive work of cartography, georeferencing, photography and documentation. To disseminate it, the website of the Camino Torres was created in 2011, which has allowed numerous pilgrims and cyclists to follow in the footsteps of Diego de Torres Villarroel, through Spain and Portugal. This route obtained the institutional support of the municipalities it crosses and of the Alumni Association of the University of Salamanca.

The jury for this edition

The online meeting of this body was chaired in May by José Alberto Díez de Castro, the General Secretary for Universities of the Xunta de Galicia, on behalf of Román Rodríguez, the Regional Minister for Culture, Education, Vocational Training and Universities of the Xunta de Galicia.

The following authorities also participated:

  • Anxo M. Lorenzo, the Director General for Culture of Xunta de Galicia.
  • Marek Kręglewski, the president of the Compostela Group of Universities.
  • Antonio López, the rector of the University of Santiago de Compostela (Spain).
  • Guillermo Cisneros, the rector of the Technical University of Madrid (Spain).
  • Edward Roekaert, the rector of the Peruvian University of Applied Sciences (Peru)
  • María Teresa Carballeira Rivera, the executive secretary of the Compostela Group of Universities.

Apart from the authorities present, the honorary president of the jury of the XXVII International Prize Grupo Compostela-Xunta de Galicia is Alfonso Rueda, the head of the Galician Executive.