A New Group of Student Visitors Pursues Research at MIT

Thursday, 19 November 2009

On the fourth floor of a sleek office building on the MIT campus in Cambridge, in the MIT Design Lab, are an array of mock-ups of building and other designs made from the usual materials, including foam and wood. But out-of-the-ordinary research is behind these designs – and one of the researchers in residence, at least for several months, is Vasco Granadeiro, an MIT Portugal PhD candidate in Sustainable Energy Systems from Instituto Superior Técnico (IST).

Vasco Granadeiro, one of 17 PhD candidates to arrive at MIT this fallGranadeiro and his IST advisor, Prof. José Duarte (who is also visiting MIT), are working with MIT Portugal and MIT Media Lab Professor William Mitchell on an aspect of mass-customization thatinvolves creating a methodology, as well as design and building plans, for a housing development that is at once pre-fab and customizable – and which takes into account energy concerns. The work is not theoretical: their plan is to see a project through construction with a builder in a developing country where building stock is needed and sustainability considerations are welcome.

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Applications Open for Advanced Degree Programs That Begin in Fall 2010

Monday, 09 November 2009

The MIT Portugal Program is once again accepting applications for its seven leading-edge advanced degree programs:

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“Meet MIT” Brings Portuguese and MIT Students Together to Foster Entrepeneurship

Sunday, 01 November 2009

Some 500 graduate students, faculty and researchers made their way to Lisbon on October 21, 2009 for “Meet MIT: A Student-to-Student Workshop on Entrepreneurship,” an intensive, half-day immersion in technology innovation and entrepreneurship designed to serve two purposes: to bring together students from the MIT Portugal Program and MIT to learn about entrepreneurship from invited speakers, faculty and researchers, and to challenge teams of these students to think on their feet and arrive at viable “go-to-market” strategies for various technologies.

Meet MITMeeting and collaborating with MIT students and alumni at this first-of-its-kind MIT Portugal event – which was held at the Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa (FCT-UNL) – were graduate students from FCT-UNL, the University of Minho, IST, ITQB (UNL) and UNL’s School of Economics.

Learning from Successful Entrepreneurs

Several prominent technology entrepreneurs were on hand to share their own real-world experience in bringing technologies to the marketplace: Sarah Bird, founder and CEO of SaafWater; Antonio Camara, founder and CEO of YDreams; Nevan Hanumara, co-founder of Robopsy and an MIT PhD candidate in Mechanical Engineering; Jonathan Harthorne, founder and CEO of MassChallenge; Richard Myrick, senior advisor to the MIT AgeLab; and José Salcedo, founder and CEO of Multiwave.

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Protocol Signed in Ponta Delgada Another Step Forward for the Green Islands Project

Friday, 30 October 2009

On October 26, 2009, the University of the Azores, the Regional Government of the Azores and Portugal’s Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT) signed a Protocol of Cooperation for the development of the MIT Portugal Program’s Green Islands project, which aims to significantly reduce the Azores’ use of fossil fuels by developing new and expanded renewable energy resources and technologies. The signing took place in Ponta Delgada, on the island of São Miguel.

The protocol is a follow-on to the April 2009 agreement signed by the University of the Azores and MIT Portugal to develop an advanced studies program; also, to engage in research and development, as well as demonstration projects in Sustainable Energy Systems – the latter including collaboration on the Green Islands project. (The energy company SGC Energia and EdA, the Azores’ electric utility, are other key partners in Green Islands.)

Studies and Demonstration Projects

Under the protocol, students and faculty at the University of the Azores will work with counterparts from MIT Portugal to study energy consumption patterns (with a specific emphasis on residential and commercial buildings), as well as study transportation/mobility demands on the Islands. The partners will also map the potential for a range of renewables in the Azores, including solar, wind, wave/tides, geothermal and biofuels.

These research projects will set the stage for demonstration projects – for example, the development of electric vehicle fleets, the design of a net-zero energy school, and the installation of residential solar hot water heaters.


“Active Learning” the Focus at Annual EDAM Education-Research Meeting

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Improving student learning was the topic at hand during an intensive workshop for Portuguese faculty from the MIT Portugal Program’s Engineering Design and Advanced Manufacturing (EDAM) focus area September 25–26, 2009.


The workshop, “Improving Student Learning and Knowledge Retention,” was led by MIT Teaching and Learning Laboratory Associate Director Dr. Janet Rankin at the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Porto. The participants—27 faculty members from the EDAM consortium institutions, including the Engineering School of the University of Minho, the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Porto, and Instituto Superior Técnico of the Technical University of Lisbon—were joined by several faculty from MIT Portugal’s Sustainable Energy Systems focus area institutions.

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