Ángel Cabrera (academic)

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Ángel Cabrera
Cabrera in 2012
12th President of Georgia Institute of Technology
Assumed office
September 1, 2019 (2019-09-01)
Preceded byBud Peterson
6th President of George Mason University
In office
July 1, 2012 (2012-07-01) – July 31, 2019 (2019-07-31)
Preceded byAlan Merten
Succeeded byAnne Holton
11th President of Thunderbird School of Global Management
In office
July 1, 2004 (2004-07-01) – June 30, 2012 (2012-06-30)
Personal details
Born (1967-08-05) August 5, 1967 (age 56)[1]
Madrid, Spain
EducationUniversidad Politécnica de Madrid (BS, MS)
Georgia Institute of Technology (MS, PhD)
Academic background
ThesisA functional analysis of categorization (1995)
Doctoral advisorDorrit Billman
Academic work
DisciplineCognitive science

Ángel Cabrera Izquierdo (born August 5, 1967) is a Spanish-American academic. He is the 12th and president of the Georgia Institute of Technology. Previously, he served as the president of George Mason University and of the Thunderbird School of Global Management, and the former dean of IE Business School. His scholarship includes work on learning, management and leadership.[2]

On June 13, 2019, Cabrera was announced as the new President at the Georgia Institute of Technology, a post he assumed on September 1, 2019.[3] Cabrera is the first Spanish-born president of an American university.[4]

Early life and education[edit]

Cabrera was born in Madrid, the second of four brothers. He received his telecommunications engineering degree (equivalent to an undergraduate and masters in electrical and computer engineering in the American system) at Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, and earned his MS and Ph.D. in cognitive psychology from Georgia Institute of Technology as a Fulbright Scholar.[5]

He joined the faculty of IE Business School in 1998 and was dean from 2000 to 2004.[6] He was appointed President of Thunderbird School of Global Management in 2004 and President of George Mason University in 2012.[7]


During his tenure, George Mason University reached the highest research tier in the Carnegie Classification,[8] grew enrollment by more than 5,000 students, opened a campus in South Korea,[9] and built the Potomac Environmental Research Center,[10] the Point of View Center for Conflict Analysis and Resolution,[11] and the Peterson Family Health Sciences Hall.[12] The university established the Schar School of Policy and Government,[13] the Genomics and Bioinformatics Research Institute[14] in partnership with Inova Health System and the University of Virginia, the Institute for Advanced Biomedical Research,[15] and the Mason Innovation Exchange,[16] an innovation and entrepreneurship center. In 2013 the university joined the Atlantic 10 conference, leaving the Colonial Athletic Association.[17] In 2016, the Antonin Scalia Law School was named in honor of the late Supreme Court Justice. In 2017, the university won a national competition[18] to establish a Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence.[19] In 2018 the university helped attract Amazon second headquarters to Northern Virginia and announced a 400,000 square foot expansion of its Arlington campus to support a new School of Computing and a new Institute of Digital Innovation.[20]

The World Economic Forum named Cabrera a Global Leader for Tomorrow in 2002,[21] a Young Global Leader in 2005[22] and chairman of the Global Agenda Council for promoting entrepreneurship in 2008.[23] He was named a Henry Crown Fellow by the Aspen Institute[24] in 2008 and a Great Immigrant by Carnegie Corporation in 2017.[25] He is a member of the Inter-American Dialogue[26] and the Council on Foreign Relations.[27]

His paper with his wife, Elizabeth Cabrera, "Knowledge-sharing dilemmas" published in Organization Studies in 2002 has been cited more than 2,000 times.[28] The paper presents a theory of why some people are more inclined than others to volunteer their expertise and ideas in shared repositories. The theory is based on the notion of social dilemmas in the provision of public goods.

Cabrera moderates a discussion with Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo at Georgia Tech on December 9, 2020.

In 2014 he received an honorary degree from Miami-Dade College[29] and in 2018 he received an honorary doctorate from Universidad Politécnica de Madrid.[30]

Cabrera serves on the boards of the National Geographic Society, the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, and the Fundación Innovación Bankinter. He has served on the advisory board of the Georgia Institute of Technology,[31] which he chaired in 2011, and the board of the Northern Virginia Technology Council. He has chaired the Virginia Council of Presidents and the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities' Commission on International Initiatives and has served on the boards of three public companies: eFunds,[32] PetSmart[33] and, currently, Inovio.[34]

While President, there have been allegations of political discrimination against student groups which resulted in a lawsuit.[35] This resulted in a settlement by Georgia Tech of $50,000 dollars.[36]

Students also sued the school for tuition and fees that they felt they were owed because they paid for the full academic experience which wasn't delivered because of the Covid pandemic.[37]

Georgia Tech had to resolve a complaint of anti-semitism because of blatant anti-Semitic exclusion and harassment at a campus group event.[38]

Georgia Tech reached $500K settlement after investigation uncovers citizenship discrimination against non-US citizens on career services website with DOJ.[39]

Cabrera is married to Elizabeth (Beth) F. Cabrera (née Fraser), an organizational psychologist. Together, they have two children, Alex and Emilia.[40][41]


  1. ^ "Ángel Cabrera." Marquis Who's Who Biographies. Accessed 2015-04-03 via LexisNexis.
  2. ^ "Ángel Cabrera - Google Scholar Citations". scholar.google.com. Retrieved January 2, 2016.
  3. ^ Stirgus, Eric. "Ga. Board of Regents hires Ángel Cabrera to lead Georgia Tech". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
  4. ^ "Cabrera named president of the Georgia Institute of Technology". www.usg.edu. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  5. ^ Izquierdo, Angel Cabrera. A functional analysis of categorization (1995). Georgia Institute of Technology. Doctoral dissertation.
  6. ^ "Ofertas de empleo y bolsa de trabajo : Expansionyempleo.com". Retrieved January 2, 2016.
  7. ^ "Board of Visitors Selects Dr. Ángel Cabrera as the Sixth President of George Mason University, Effective July 1, 2012 - University News - George Mason University". news.gmu.edu. Retrieved February 4, 2015.
  8. ^ "Carnegie Classifications | Standard Listings". carnegieclassifications.iu.edu. Retrieved December 5, 2018.
  9. ^ "GMU Korea ·". GMU Korea. Retrieved December 5, 2018.
  10. ^ "New environmental research and education complex opens at Belmont Bay". Prince William Times. April 16, 2018. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
  11. ^ "Point of View International Retreat and Conference Center | The School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution". scar.gmu.edu. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
  12. ^ "Peterson Family Health Sciences Hall will help Mason reach its potential in health education | George Mason". www2.gmu.edu. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
  13. ^ "Schar School".
  14. ^ "Board of Visitors Approves Academic Affiliation with Inova". UVA Today. June 9, 2017. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
  15. ^ "Announcing Mason's Institute for Advanced Biomedical Research". president.gmu.edu. April 24, 2015. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
  16. ^ "Mason Innovation Exchange". Mason Innovation Exchange. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
  17. ^ dfairbank@dailypress.com | 757-247-4637, Dave Fairbank. "George Mason leaves CAA for Atlantic 10 in latest conference realignment". dailypress.com. Retrieved February 3, 2019.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  18. ^ "Mason receives multimillion-dollar Center of Excellence Award from the Department of Homeland Security | George Mason". www2.gmu.edu. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
  19. ^ "Criminal Investigations and Network Analysis Center". CINA. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
  20. ^ "George Mason launching Institute for Digital InnovAtion (IDIA) Industries | Virginia Business". www.virginiabusiness.com. November 13, 2018. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
  21. ^ "The Global Leaders of Tomorrow (GLT) Community". The Global Leaders of Tomorrow (GLT) Community | World Economic Forum. Retrieved January 2, 2016.
  22. ^ "YGL Alumni Community". YGL Alumni Community | World Economic Forum. Retrieved January 2, 2016.
  23. ^ "The Global Agenda 2009" (PDF). World Economic Forum.
  24. ^ "2008 Twelfth Knights Class". The Aspen Institute. Retrieved January 2, 2016.
  25. ^ York, Carnegie Corporation of New. "July Fourth Tribute Honors 38 Distinguished Immigrants | Carnegie Corporation of New York". Carnegie Corporation of New York. Retrieved January 30, 2018.
  26. ^ "PRESS RELEASE: 10 Members Join the Inter-American Dialogue". us10.campaign-archive1.com. Retrieved March 7, 2016.
  27. ^ "Membership Roster". Council on Foreign Relations. Retrieved January 2, 2016.
  28. ^ Cabrera, Angel; Cabrera, Elizabeth F. (January 1, 2002). "Knowledge-sharing dilemmas". Organization Studies. 23 (5): 687–710. doi:10.1177/0170840602235001. hdl:10016/7143. S2CID 14998234.
  29. ^ "VP Biden To Deliver Commencement Speech At MDC". April 21, 2014. Retrieved February 11, 2018.
  30. ^ elEconomista.es. "Ángel Cabrera, primer español rector de una universidad americana, doctor honoris causa por la UPM - elEconomista.es" (in Spanish). Retrieved February 11, 2018.
  31. ^ "Meet College of Sciences Alumnus and George Mason University President Ángel Cabrera | College of Sciences | Georgia Institute of Technology | Atlanta, GA". cos.gatech.edu. Retrieved February 11, 2018.
  32. ^ "eFunds Names Dr. Ángel Cabrera to Board of Directors". Marketwire. Retrieved January 2, 2016.
  33. ^ "PetSmart Appoints Dr. Angel Cabrera to Board of Directors | Business Wire". www.businesswire.com (Press release). Retrieved January 2, 2016.
  34. ^ "Inovio – Board of Directors with senior pharmaceutical expertise". Retrieved July 27, 2017.
  35. ^ Maureen Downey (April 1, 2020). "Lawsuit: Anti-abortion group at Georgia Tech denied funding to host MLK niece". AJC. Retrieved September 20, 2017.
  36. ^ Maureen Downey (September 10, 2020). "All students win in Georgia Tech settlement with anti-abortion group". AJC. Retrieved September 10, 2020.
  37. ^ Eric Stirgus (December 1, 2020). "Students sue University System of Georgia for tuition, fees". AJC. Retrieved December 1, 2020.
  38. ^ AJC Staff (January 28, 2021). "Ga Tech resolves complaint with Jewish campus leader kept from meeting". AJC. Retrieved January 28, 2021.
  39. ^ Mariya Murrow (September 1, 2023). "Georgia Tech reaches $500K settlement after investigation uncovers citizenship discrimination". ANF. Retrieved September 1, 2023.
  40. ^ "Mason Welcomes Its Sixth President, Ángel Cabrera | George Mason University". Retrieved April 4, 2016.
  41. ^ "Angel Cabrera".