UT Austin and Portugal: A 10-year partnership renewed until 2030

28 Feb 2018

UT Austin Portugal Program was renewed for another decade in a public ceremony held at CEiiA on February 15th.

The ceremony of the signature of the new collaboration agreements between the Portuguese government and the international partnerships took place under the “GoPortugal: Global Science and Technology Partnerships Portugal” conference, which is one of the pillars of the innovation strategy defined by the Portuguese government.

The signing ceremony was presided by the Portuguese Prime Minister and the Portuguese Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education. The new collaboration agreements included the signing of the cooperation agreement with UT Austin, which was signed by the FCT President, Paulo Ferrão, and by the Associate Dean for Research in Engineering at UT Austin, John Ekerdt, officially starting a new phase of the UT Austin Portugal Program. 

“We are about to enter a new chapter in this partnership that will promote an internationally relevant research agenda in emerging areas of international importance. We both see this as a better way to educate future generations in an increasingly globalized society”, stated John Ekerdt, as he took the stage to present the UT Austin Portugal Program.

Other agreements were also signed with nine new industrial affiliate companies such as Abyssal, Deimos, Edisoft, Graphenest, IBM Portugal, Omnidea, Petsys, Tekever and Wavecom. These companies will be part of the initial Industrial Advisory Board, which is expected to contribute to the Program with important guidance and resources in the design and operation of its multiple initiatives.

José Manuel Mendonça, President of INESC TEC and the future National Director of the UT Austin Portugal Program, highlighted the importance of this renewal, stating that “this is a recognition of 10 years of joint collaboration led to successes and impacts, transferring the outcomes of research to companies to produce economic value, create jobs, and development for the country”. The INESC TEC President also acknowledged that “Texas and Austin also see Portugal as an interesting and challenging counterpart in Europe with whom it is worth developing joint research”.

The Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa closed the first part of the ceremony, emphasizing the role of innovation and highlighting that “to make this turning point sustainable and longlasting in our economy, it is essential to assume Innovation as the great engine of our development”.

This third renewal of the international partnerships will extend the collaboration with the American universities until 2030. 

Here is our highlight video of the event.