Pázmány Péter Catholic University

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For other universities with similar names, see Pázmáneum (disambiguation)

Pázmány Péter Catholic University is a private university of the Catholic Church in Hungary, recognized by the state. Founded in 1635,<ref name=history>Template:Cite web Template:Hu icon</ref> the PPCU is one of Hungary's oldest and most prestigious institutions of higher education.

The Faculty of Theology was established by archbishop Péter Pázmány in Nagyszombat, the Kingdom of Hungary (today Trnava, Slovakia) in 1635. The university is located in three cities: the Rectors' Office, the Faculty of Theology, the Faculty of Law, the Faculty of Information Technology, and the Postgraduate Institute of Canon-Law are located in Budapest. The campus of the Vitéz János Faculty of Teaching is in Esztergom, around the Esztergom Basilica. The campus of the Faculty of Humanities is in Piliscsaba, in the vicinity of Budapest.

The university has several research groups and institutes. One of the most important international research programmes of the university is the Syro-Hungarian Archeological Mission, which does the restoration of Margat's crusader fortress.

Nearly 10.000 students attend the university, enrolled in several Bachelor, Master, and PhD programmes.

It has a wide range of international cooperations, including the Erasmus programme and bilateral agreements. It was named in 2009 as one of the most active members of the Erasmus programme. It is a co-establisher of the International Research Universities Network and has strong connections with Radboud University Nijmegen, Catholic University of Leuven, Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in Bogota, Saint Louis University and University of Notre Dame.


  • 1992–1998 Msgr. Dr. Ferenc Gál
  • 1998–2003 Msgr. Prof. Dr. Péter Erd?
  • 2003–2011 Msgr. Prof. Dr. György Fodor
  • 2011– Msgr. Prof. Dr. Szabolcs Anzelm Szuromi O.Praem

Great chancellors

  • 1992–2005 Most rev. Dr. István Seregély, Archbishop of Eger
  • 2005– Most rev. Em. Card. Prof. Dr. Péter Erd? DSc, Primate of Hungary, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest



The university has five faculties and two institutes.

File:Piliscsaba Stephaneum déli oldal.JPG
Stephaneum, the main building of the Faculty of Humanities

Faculty of Humanities

The Faculty of Humanities was established by the Hungarian Catholic Bishops' Conference on 30 January 1992 (decree no. 46/1992.), with the permission no. Prot. N.223/91/9 (on 30 January 1992) of the Congregation of the Catholic Education of the Apostolic Holy See. The government of Hungary accepted it on 25 May 1993.<ref name="history"/> It is in the town of Piliscsaba. The campus was created from a Soviet barrack, on 220,000 m². As it is situated in a nature reserve, only pavilion-like buildings were allowed to be built which don't interfere with the landscape's harmony. Its buildings were designed by the group of Imre Makovecz and it has become an architectural landmark (see the pictures below). The campus has a train station (since 1995) and a bus stop (since 1996); it is accessible from Budapest centre in less than an hour. Most of its students commute on a daily basis, but it has dormitories for the other students at the venue and in the town.

Faculty of Theology

The Faculty of Theology was established by Cardinal Péter Pázmány on 12 May 1635. It is working since then continuously.<ref name="history"/> It is in Budapest, Veres Pálné u. 24, H-1053. Cardinal Péter Pázmány, archbishop of Esztergom, Primate of Hungary, has established a University in Nagyszombat. The foundation diploma was issued on 12 May 1635 and was approved by Emperor Ferdinand II on 8 October in the same year. The inauguration ceremony had taken place on 13 November 1635. Cardinal Pázmány erected originally two faculties, namely Theological and Arts. For the teaching system and process the newly opened university – because her Jesuit links – was the Ratio atque institutio studiorum Societatis Jesu as a basis which had been crystallized in practice from 8 January 1599, however we must remember for the fact that Péter Pázmány previously had spent after his studies in Kolozsvár, Kraków, Wien and in Rome (i.e. Collegium Romanum) he taught in philosophy and theology in Graz, therefore he was under a very strong influence of the Roman and Austrian form of instruction which included the structures of the higher educational institutes. The teaching system, the state of professors and also the theological sources and commentary and their form of explanation and supervision testify the best and most effective contemporary European model, together with strong loyalty to the Magisterium of the Church. The Faculty of Theology has survived the moving to Buda then Pest, moreover the detachment from the body of the Pázmány Péter Science University in 1950 by the state and was able to continue her mission under the name of Roman Catholic Central Theological Academy. The authorization of the Institute to give all of recognized academic degree in Sacred Theology (baccalaureatus, licentiatus, laureatus [doctoratus]) in the name of the Holy See during this time is remained, moreover the issued diploma was also recognized by the state too. The fundamental change has happened after 1979 and 1990. Pope Sixtus V erected the Congregatio pro universitate studii romani in 1588 by his constitution Immensa in order to supervise the higher educational system of the Papal State, however the Congregation had mandate not only for the Roman universities, but for example for Paris, Oxford, Bologna and Salamanca. Pope Leo XII had changed the name of this Congregation to Congregatio studiorum by his constitution Quod divina sapientia in 1824. The competence of this Congregation was enlarged to control all of catholic universities of the whole world in 1870. Popes Pius X, Benedict XV, and Paul VI made also some modifications of this Congregation's mandates. Finally, Pope John Paul II promulgated the Apostolic Constitution Sapientia Christiana on 15 April 1979. This new higher educational law of the Catholic Church regarding the instruction of sacred sciences and the attached executive rule (Ordinationes, 29 April 1979) reorganized and clearly defined the structure, work, instruction, and research in these fields. There are precise prescriptions – with high requirements – concerning the Gran Chancellor, dean, and professors. Moreover, we can find there a long description about the acceptable ability of the received students; and a detailed definition of the teaching goal, the number of stable professors, the obligatory subjects and seminaries (including classical languages), and further optional subjects too. Based on the above explained new canonical regulation the Theological Academy of Budapest reorganized her teaching program and through this until now she complies of these obligatory norms. The classical five (baccalaureatus) plus two (licentiatus) plus one (doctoratus) years (the last two together is recognized as a PhD instruction by the state) Sacred Theology teaching program which is officially recognized by the Holy See is built on twelfth departments: Department of Fundamental Theology; Department of Systematic Christian Philosophy; Department of History of Philosophy; Department of Old Testament Studies; Department of New Testament Studies; Department of Dogmatic Theology; Department of Moral Theology; Department of Liturgy and Pastoral Theology; Department of Patristic History and Literature; Department of Medieval and Modern Ecclesiastical History; Department of Canon Law; Department of Biblical Languages. Through these departments is substantial not only the theological instruction, but also a very high level research work as part of the so-called Theological Doctorate School, which is unique in Hungary. Obviously, the Faculty of Theology has further teaching activity within the fields of mission of the Catholic Church, in order to educate as many as possible Christ-faithful for the constructive activity in their particular Churches (diocese, parishes, religious orders, spiritual movements, etc.). Serving this purpose, the Faculty has Bachelor programs to form Managers of Catholic Communities, Catechetic and Pastoral Assistants; there are also Master programs to form Teachers of Religion and Catholic Canon Lawyers. When the political change has happened in Hungary in 1990, the name of the Faculty has been changed to Pázmány Péter Roman Catholic Theological Academy as an independent university. It became a basis for the new Catholic university of Budapest which has today five flourishing faculties and one institute with faculty rights (i.e. Canon Law Institute “ad instar facultatis”). Every single educational program of this ancient Theological Faculty of the Pázmány Péter Catholic University has received official state accreditation by the Hungarian Higher Educational Accreditation Committee, which has already accredited the entire University, including the Faculty of Theology, in two times, recently in 2010.

Institute of Canon Law "ad instar facultatis"

The Institute of Canon Law "ad instar facultatis" (Institute with faculty rights) was established by the Holy See on 30 November 1996 (n. 975/96). In Hungary and in the region too, the Pázmány Péter Catholic University is the only one providing profound studies in canon law. Canon law means in proper sense the internal own law of the Catholic Church that applies to everyone baptized in the Catholic Church as well as to those who have joined the community of the Church. According to the ecclesiastical authorization the Institute entitled to issue baccalaureate, licenciate and doctorate academic degree in canon law. The Hungarian State acknowledges the baccalaureate degree in canon law – based on the Bologna-System – as MA degree, as well as the doctorate in canon law as PhD. The licenciate in canon law is required for particular internal ecclesiastical offices. The current permanent team of professors – Anzelm Szabolcs Szuromi O.Praem., Géza Kuminetz, Péter Szabó, Catherine Hársfai, George Lefkánits, Blazio Schanda, Csaba Szilágyi, and Philippe Gudenus – organizes many courses in various canonical fields in Hungarian and in other languages (Italian, German, English)to explaine more precisely the system of the canonical discipline. Nevertheless, the Institute has been visited by many erudite professors of Pontifical Faculties from the whole world, which also has improved the instructional work. The Institute of Canon Law “ad instar facultatis” gives significant stress on the high level scholarly research. To fulfill this aim the Institute organizes a yearly International ‘colloquia’ in every February; moreover, publishes an international canon law review, i.e. Folia Canonica, in the main western European languages (from 1998, from 2012: Folia Theologica et Canonica), but also a Hungarian review, i.e. Kánonjog (from 1999); furthermore, a book series, i.e. Bibliotheca Instituti Postgradualis Iuris Canonici Universitatis Catholicae de Petro Pázmány nominatae, which includes four sub-series. Through these publication facilities the Postgraduate Institute of Canon Law can harmonize the canonical field and activity in Hungary, and also it can enrich the international canon law studies with new emphases and results. These scholarly new results reviewed in International ’symposia’ from Rome to Venice; from Paris to New York, but also in the Eastern European Region. The Institute had a privilege in 2001 to organize the "Eleventh International Congress of the Consociatio Internationalis Studio Iuris Canonici Promovendo and the Fifteenth of the Società per il Diritto delle Chiese Orientali, entitled Territorialità e personalità nel diritto canonico e ecclesiastico – Il diritto canonico di fronte al terzo millenio". Moreover, the Catholic University’s Institute of Canon Law “ad instar facultates” hosted the "XIIIth International Congress of Medieval Canon Law", which took place in the St. Adalbert Teaching and Research Center of Esztergom in 2008. The basic research fields of the canon law faculty of Budapest – by the continual international recognized research projects of her professors – are ecclesiastical law; theology of canon law; general norms of canon law; constitutional law of the Church; liturgical law; Catholic marriage law; canonical norms of sacraments and sacramentals; canonical process law; canonical penal law; canon law of Eastern Churches; Medieval ius commune and canon law history. The Institute decorated with the title of “Doctor Honoris Causa” Urbano Navarrete Cortes S.J. on 2 May 2000, one of the most significant 20th century canon lawyer, who did many for the renewal of the canonical knowledge in Hungary in the Eighties and died on 22 November 2010. The Canon Law Institute “ad instar facultatis” of the Pázmány Péter Catholic University has enriched on 5 May 2011 with two new honorary doctors, i.e. José Tomás Martin de Agar and Bronis?aw Wenanty Zubert OFM.

Faculty of Information Technology and Bionics

The Faculty of Information Technology was established by the Hungarian Catholic Bishops' Conference on 24 June 1998 with the permission no. 1246/1998. The government of Hungary accepted it on 20 July 2001. It has been renamed to Faculty of Information Technology and Bionics on May 1, 2013, effective as of September 1, 2013.<ref name="history"/> It's located in Budapest.

Faculty of Law and Political Sciences

The Faculty of Law and Political Sciences was established on 3 April 1995 with the permission no. 503/1995.<ref name="history"/> It is located in Budapest.

Vitéz János Faculty of Teaching

The Vitéz János Teaching College was founded on 3 November 1842, and integrated in the Pázmány Péter Catholic University as Vitéz János Faculty on 1 January 2008.<ref name="history"/> It is in the city of Esztergom. The campus is around the Esztergom Basilica. Its Practicing School has been working since 31 August 1893.

Collegium Hungaricum

The Collegium Hungaricum (officially Collegium Hungaricum Lovaniense, the former Home Cardinal Mindszenty) is a house for Hungarian university students, researchers and teachers in the city of Leuven (25 km from Bruxelles), at the Blijde Inkomstraat 18. The owner of the building is the Hungarian Province of the Jesuit Order, but the maintainer is the Pázmány Péter Catholic University.


Hungarian Bionic Vision Center

The goal of the Hungarian Bionic Vision Center is to restore vision of visually impaired patients to the maximum extent and to improve the quality of their lives through using medical and technological aids. They run programmes to study promising medical and engineering technologies under active research.
Homepage: lataskozpont.itk.ppke.hu

Robot Lab

The RobotLab is to apply unique ideas inspired by Biology using Information Technologies. How is it possible to design better prosthesis? Can neurobiology help to develop new remote control robots for helicopters? Can a biped be taught to walk in a similar way as we learned our balancing and moving patterns? What is the functional connection between visual and tactile sensing? These are some questions which are addressed by the Rotob Lab.
Homepage: robotlab.itk.ppke.hu

Ányos Jedlik Research and Development Laboratory

The Jedlik Laboratories is a new science-education-technology center where the advantages of multidisciplinary work is emphasized in some important emerging fields of science and technology. In the beginning the key areas were info-bionics and sensor-computing, telepresence and language technologies. Nano–bio technology, VLSI IC design and some other areas have recently become important key areas as well.

Its mission is to bridge the gap between forefront research, university education, and technology transfer, including competitive R&D projects, via the daily interactions between research professors and students forming a unit where innovation and learning are developing in concert and in close cooperation with the support of a few leading research laboratories and high tech companies worldwide. The other specific aspects of this center are Live synergies of information technology and life sciences, in particular the neurosciences, genetics and immunology as well as certain aspects of the emerging field of nanoscale engineering and molecular bionics. The synergy is supported via a hierarchy of models, including functional, macro, micro and nanoscale (molecular level) models, as well as analogue, digital and analog array -and-logic models, and including human and artificial language technologies. Based on the sensor revolution and nanoscale technologies, the emerging fields of sensor-computing, telepresence, integrated communication and ad-hoc mobile networks, bio-compatible interfaces, as well as "smart" energy saving devices and integrated nano–micro systems, we are searching for new directions of applications, products and services to be developed.

The Jedlik Laboratories is organized within the Faculty of Information Technology in an active and institutional cooperation with the founding and later joined institutes. The founding Institutes: the Institutes of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (HAS), namely the Computer and Automation Research Institute, the Research Institute for Experimental Medicine, the Neurobiology Research Unit at the Semmelweis University of Medicine of the HAS, the Research Institute of Technical Physics and Material Science, the Research Institute of Psychology, the Institute of Enzymology of the Biology Research Center of the HAS, the Richter Gedeon Co., the Ericsson Hungary Ltd., and a few SMEs. The cooperating international research laboratories are listed in the International relations section.
Homepage: Jedlik Laboratories

Biomicrofluidics Research Group

The Biomicrofluidics Research group works on the development of point-of-care (POC) diagnostic devices, optofluidic and digital microfluidic (DMF) platforms. This includes theory, numerical modeling, design, fabrication, test and different applications. Their main area of focus is microfluidic devices for biomedical applications.

The point-of-care diagnostic project focuses on the continuous observation and monitoring of biological liquids, e.g., veterinary or human blood samples.

The integration and interplay between optical and fluidic functionalities defines the emerging field of optofluidics. Microfluidics enables the realization of lab-on-a-chip (LOC) devices in connection with CNN-UM based camera systems. Thus, the obtained biomedical liquid analyzer can recognize cells and particles in the sample flow in real-time.

The Research Group's digital microfluidic (DMF) platform is based the electrowetting-on-dielectrics (EWOD) phenomenon; they are currently working on clinical applications of this. The biological fluid droplets can be moved by electric field on a superhydrophobic surface. Droplet mainulations allow for parallel and multi-reagent analysis.
Homepage: en.ufluidics.bionics.hu/

Research Centre for Competitive Law

It was established in 2006, at the Faculty of Law and Political Sciences. Its main fields are organizing scientific conferences, publishing scientific papers, to spread the culture of competition.
Homepage (Hungarian): www.versenyjog.com

Syro-Hungarian archeological mission: margat excavations

The Syro-Hungarian Archeological mission is a research programme of the Pázmány Péter Catholic University. Its main objective is to restore the Fortress of Margat, which is the largest crusader fortress of the Middle East, and to put under discussion the era of the crusades in the Middle East. The head of the mission is archeologist Balázs Major.<ref name="margat">Template:Cite web</ref> The huge, 5.2-acre fortress is related to Hungary not only because of this expedition. In 1218 King Andrew II of Hungary visited the fortress protected by the Johannite Order and contributed an annual sum of 1000 silver marks for its upkeep.<ref name="margat"/> According to Balázs Major, "the most sensational discovery must be the mural found in the chapel." This is the largest crusader mural unearthed in the Holy Land, and it is unique from an iconographical aspect, as well.<ref name="margat"/>

Avicenna Institute of Middle Eastern Studies

The Avicenna Institute is a non-profit research center with the objectives of promoting scholarship in the field of Middle Eastern studies. In this framework, several senior and junior researchers and fellows are assuming and pursuing our aims. Among their projects are organizing public and international scientific workshops and conferences, publishing scientific monographs, conferences’ proceedings, granting scholarship for junior researches. We have solid connections with Hungarian and international research centres, such as Pazmany Peter Catholic University, Saint Joseph University, Beirut and Università degli Studi di Napoli "L'Orientale".

The Institute was founded to fulfill threefold objectives: to conduct research for thorough understanding of Arabic, Persian and Turkish cultures; to advise decision-makers, media-actors and businessmen interested in Middle-East issues; to disseminate knowledge on current topics in on-going public debates to avoid misunderstandings in intercultural dialogue.

The institute works on several projects:

  • study the factors of continuity and discontinuity in Islamic legacy in the perspective of understanding the current development in the Islamic world, mainly in philosophy, theology, political sciences and literature, classical and modern,
  • organizing public and international scientific workshops and conferences to disseminate knowledge,
  • publishing scientific monographs, conferences’ proceedings,
  • granting scholarship for junior researches in PhD or post-doctoral dissertations.

Notable people

Honorary doctors

  • Max van der Stoel, the first High Commissioner on National Minorities of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (24 November 1999)
  • Urbano Navarrete SJ, Cardinal, professor of Canon Law and former rector of the Pontifical Gregorian University (2.May 2000))
  • Paul Poupard, Cardinal, former president of the Pontifical Council for Culture and also of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue (1 March 2001)
  • Bartholomew I, archbishop of Constantinople, Ecumenical Patriarch (25 April 2001)
  • Franciszek Macharski, Cardinal, former Archbishop of Kraków (22. September 2002.)
  • Alfred Bayer, President of the Hanns Seidel Foundation (22. September 2002.)
  • Astrik L. Gabriel O.Praem., Director of the Medieval Institute at the University of Notre Dame from 1952 to 1975 (2003.)
  • Stephen Privett SJ, President of the University of San Francisco (2004.)
  • James Crawford, Whewell Professor of International Law, Chair of the Faculty of Law at the University of Cambridge (21. January 2005.)
  • Lorenzo Ornaghi, Rector of the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (15. November 2005.)
  • Gerardo Marín, Professor, Associate Provost of the University of San Francisco (2005.)
  • László Szabó SJ, Professor Emeritus of the Saint Joseph University (2005.)
  • John Lukacs, Professor of history (10 June 2009.)
  • Oscar Andrés Rodríguez Maradiaga S.D.B., Cardinal, Archbishop of Tegucigalpa, President of Caritas Internationalis (23. November 2009.)
  • Zenon Grocholewski, Cardinal, Prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education and Great Chancellor of the Pontifical Gregorian University (12. May 2010.)
  • Miklós Vet?, Historian of Philosophy, Professor Emeritus of the University of Poitiers (15. December 2010.)
  • José Tomás Martin de Agar, Professor of Canon Law at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross (5. May 2011.)<ref name="kurir">Template:Cite news Template:Hu icon</ref>
  • Bronis?aw Wenanty Zubert OFM, Professor of Canon Law at the John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin (5. May 2011.)<ref name="kurir" />
  • Shenouda III, Pope of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria (19. August 2011.)
  • Jean-Luc Marion, Professor, Head of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Paris IV (Sorbonne) (27. September 2011.)
  • Wolfgang Waldstein, Professor of legal history, University of Innsbruck, member of the Pontifical Academy for Life (29. March 2012.)

Faculty and staff

  • Kathleen E. Dubs, Old and Middle English, medieval literature scholar; her lectures on Tolkien revived interest in him in academic circles
  • Tamás Freund, academician, neurobiologist, The Brain Prize laureate
  • Ida Fröhlich, historian, made the first translation of the corpus of the Dead Sea Scrolls into Hungarian
  • Rózsa Hoffmann, Secretary of State for Education
  • András Jakab, Constitutional lawyer, Schumpeter Fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, fellow researcher at Centro de Estudios Políticos y Constitucionales (2008–2010)
  • István Jelenits Sch.P., theologian, writer, Széchenyi Prize laureate
  • János Lackfi, poet, writer, literary translator
  • John Lukacs, historian, author of "Five Days in London", "May 1940" and "A New Republic"
  • Balázs Major, Arabist, archeologist, historian, head of the Syro-Hungarian Archeological Mission, and the excavation of the Crusader Fortress of Margat
  • Miklós Maróth, classical philologist, Arabist, academician, vice-president of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, honorary president of the Union Académique Internationale
  • Balázs Mezei, academician, philosopher, literary critic
  • Thomas Molnar, philosopher, historian, political theorist, author of "Utopia, The Perennial Heresy" and "The Decline of the Intellectual"
  • Péter Polt, Chief Prosecutor (2000–2006, 2010–)
  • Gábor Proszéky, linguist, mathematician, CEO of MorphoLogic, International Dennis Gabor Award and Széchenyi Prize laureate
  • András Radetzky, Deputy executive officer, Hungarian Catholic Radio (2011–)
  • Tamás Roska GCSG, academician, co-founder of the Cellular neural network. He wrote more than 200 publications and four books, number of his references are about 3000.
  • László Sólyom, President of Hungary (2005–2010), president of the Constitutional Court of Hungary (1990–1998)
  • Béla Weissmahr SJ, philosopher, theologian


Pázmány alumni number is about 26,000.

  • Tibor Benedek (2005) – Olympic, European and World champion waterpolo player<ref name="alumni">Template:Cite web Template:Hu icon</ref>
  • Gergely Gulyás (2004) – MP, deputy chairman, Committee for Human rights, Minorities, Civic and Religious Affairs of the Hungarian Parliament<ref name="alumni" />
  • Péter Harrach (1995) – former deputy speaker of the Hungarian Parliament<ref name="alumni" />
  • Máté Kocsis (2004) – mayor, 8. District of Budapest<ref name="alumni" />
  • András Koltay (2002) – member of the Media Council<ref name="alumni" />
  • Karolina Kosztrihán – radio-host, ClassFM<ref name="alumni" />
  • Tamás Gergely Kucsera (2000) – former presidential chief-adviser, Hungarian Academy of Sciences<ref name="alumni" />
  • István Madarász – film director, "Hungary – World of Potentials"<ref name="alumni" />
  • László Mécs – alpinist, member of the first Hungarian team which managed to arrive on the top of the Mount Everest<ref name="alumni" />
  • Bence Rétvári (2003) – MP, Secretary of State, Ministry of Public Administration and Justice<ref name="alumni" />
  • Atala Schöck (1998) – opera singer<ref name="alumni" />
  • Zsolt Semjén (1997) – Deputy Prime Minister, Minister without portfolio<ref name="alumni" />
  • Ádám Steinmetz (2006) – Olympic champion waterpolo player<ref name="alumni" />
  • Barnabás Steinmetz (2005) – Olympic champion waterpolo player<ref name="alumni" />
  • András Stumpf (2004) – journalist, Heti Válasz<ref name="alumni" />
  • Gerg? Süveges – anchorman, MTV<ref name="alumni" />
  • Anett Szabó (2004) – anchorwoman, HírTV<ref name="alumni" />
  • László Székely-Mádai – ice-hockey player, FTC<ref name="alumni" />
  • Ferenc Török – film director, "Moszkva tér"<ref name="alumni" />
  • Tibor Meray, author



External links


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