Portuguese Entrepreneurs at MIT's International Workshop on Innovating

The MIT Portugal Program (MPP) sent more than twenty Portuguese entrepreneurs to participate in this year´s edition of the “International Workshop on Innovating – IWI 2017.” The event took place from June 12th to 16th at the MIT campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts, specifically at the famous Stata Center.

June 12 webDuring this intensive week, participants, including aspiring entrepreneurs, who are either planning to start or are in the process of starting their businesses, and young entrepreneurs, who have already companies, were immersed in a residential, hands-on program planned at MIT. This workshop has been designed for participants to embrace innovation and entrepreneurship, and will be led by MIT and Portuguese faculty members, including Bruce Tidor (MIT), Christina Chase (MIT), Douglas Hart (MIT), João Bigotte (University of Coimbra), and Nuno Arantes-Oliveira (IST, University of Lisbon). The initiative is also supported by the MIT Portugal Program.

Throughout the week, instructors and participants jointly transformed the classroom into a space for innovating and for combining theory and practice through interactive lectures, in-class exercises, hands-on out-of-classroom experience, and selected guest lectures.

This edition of IWI has attracted participation of aspiring and young entrepreneurs from 8 different nations, representing more than twenty emerging companies and new start-ups. More than twenty of the participants were from Portugal and MPP, including current MPP students and alumni. MPP has been connected to the foundation of more than 25 start-ups, created by students, alumni, and faculty, a number that demonstrates the program´s continued effort to reinforce ties between academia and industry. Tiago Cunha Reis, MIT Portugal PhD alumni, is one of the founders of Mater Dynamics, a start-up dedicated to the development of sensors for monitoring the quality of food products, created by FCT-NOVA and MPP. He participated in last year´s edition of IWI, stating that “The International Workshop on Innovating provided a top-of-the-notch training towards innovation understanding and implantation, reshaping Mater Dynamics way to address and tackle our client problems.”

Luís Grossinho Dias da Silva, Bioengineering PhD Student, was also one of the participants and added that “IWI is a great opportunity to learn the way MIT understands and implements innovation. You get to feel the culture, space, ecosystem and best practices they have been optimising and consciously implementing over the years, and apply that to your individual project. Many people say things about innovation, but these guys actually know what they are talking about and they can show it, so take the opportunity!".

The “International Workshop on Innovating” is one of the many annual initiatives supported by the MIT Portugal Program to strengthen Portugal’s innovation ecosystem and jumpstart new entrepreneurial initiatives by providing participants an understanding of innovation with the strategic purpose of solving real-world problems. 

June 13 webInternational Workshop on Innovating – IWI 2017

Buildings Dashboard developed under the Suscity Project exhibited at the Post-internet Cities Conference

The video “City Sensing – Feel the city” which presents a Buildings dashboard for urban energy management, describes the ongoing scientific work developed under the SusCity Project within the MIT Portugal program and was shown at the Post-internet Cities Conference.

The project is focused on developing and integrating new tools and services to increase urban resource efficiency with minimum environmental impacts, while contributing to promote economic development and preserving the actual levels of reliability. The goal is to advance the science of urban systems modeling and data representation supported by urban “big data” collection and processing. Additionally, the project aims to enable and demonstrate a suite of new services that explore economic opportunities associated with the transition to sustainable urban systems.

Different data-driven analysis resulted in a dynamic Buildings Dashboard of an urban area in Lisbon which are presented in this video. The energy consumption of a typical summer day with a 15 minutes timestep is illustrated, allowing the spatial visualization of electricity consumption of residential and non-residential buildings. Moreover, the solar energy potential along the day is estimated in order to enhance the energy production from integrated solar active systems installed in the building rooftops. Finally, the energy balance between the potential electricity production and consumption is proposed, highlighting the periods of the day where buildings can be importing or exporting electricity to and from the grid.

More information about the SusCity Project is available in www.suscity-project.eu

Watch the video here.

Claudia e AndréAndré Pina e Cláudia Sousa Monteiro, both Suscity researchers, at the Post-Internet Cities Conferencee

The Future of Automotive Industry International Roundtable

Challenges and Opportunities in Design and Technology: a look into the next decade by MIT Portugal

The increasing growth of the automotive industry demands the development of groundbreaking solutions, innovative technologies and disruptive products, services and business models. New industrial players must constantly invest in R&D and look one step forward into the future, which was in fact the main objective of the International Industry Roundtable (IIR) promoted by the MIT Portugal Program, which took place on Monday, May 15th, at the RÓMULO - Centro Ciência Viva from the University of Coimbra.

The auto industry has some of the largest industrial R&D investors in the world. Typically, the annual investment in R&D surpasses 30 billion in Europe only. The automotive industry is also one of the most important industries in Portugal, being a top contributor for value creation and generation of jobs. It represents around 8% of the country’s GDP, 11% of the country exports and more than 30.000 direct jobs.

This Roundtable brought together more than 80 industry leaders, entrepreneurs, expert researchers and graduate students in a look ahead to the next 5-10 years of the industry. The Session allowed participants to discuss common objectives, share new technologies and ideas, and promoted networking and potential collaborations between participants from academia and industry.

The initiative counted on the participation of speakers from emerging companies based in Portugal such as the Fraunhofer Institute, Magnum Cap, AFIA, Brisa, Ceiia, TU Delft, Bosch, Caetano Bus, Uber, BMWi and Ubiwhere, and representatives of MIT Portugal, University of Coimbra, University of Minho, and University of Lisbon.

The International Industry Roundtables (IIR) are an ongoing initiative of the MIT Portugal Program in collaboration with multiple academic and business entities and this is the second edition dedicated to Cities, Energy and Transportation. The IIR aim is to use the neutral grounds of academia to bring together entrepreneurs, company executives, policy makers, scientists, engineers and graduate students around topics where cutting-edge technology is put at the service of sustainable economic and social development. The focus is to bridge views and find common objectives between industry and academia, as well as within industry and within academia. 

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2nd MIT Portugal International Roundtable: Challenges and Opportunities in New Technologies for Health

From the patients Empowerment to the new role of physicians: 
a new paradigm under discussion by MIT Portugal


The increasing capacity of each individual to monitor and manage their health without medical attention entails new challenges that cannot be ignored. This was one of the main topics of the International Industry Roundtable (IIR) promoted by the MIT Portugal Program, which took place on Monday, April 3rd, at the CEDOC Auditorium from the NOVA Medical School in Lisbon.

More than 80 scientists, entrepreneurs, leaders from the retail, telecommunications and medtech industries and MIT Portugal students, were gathered to discuss the main challenges of this sector under the theme: “A Doctor in My Closet; a Nurse in My Purse: New Paradigms in Healthcare Monitoring, Management and Communication”.

The event counted on the participation of speakers from MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Fraunhofer Institute, the Finnish investor Seppo Makinen, and a set of innovative and emerging companies based in Portugal, such as PLUX, Tonic App, SerFarma, Beepcare, Nutricritical, NIESM, MyNurse, SensingFuture, e Nuada. The event is also supported by Healthcare City and P-BIO – Portugal´s Biotechnology Industry Organization. In addition to the Roundtable speakers, the event was attended by decision-makers from large business groups in areas related to Health, Portuguese and foreign venture capital funds, scientists, doctors, and associative leaders.

The International Industry Roundtables (IIR) are an ongoing initiative of the MIT Portugal Program in collaboration with multiple academic and business entities and this is the second edition dedicated to New Technologies for Health. The IIR aim is to use the neutral grounds of academia to bring together entrepreneurs, company executives, policy makers, scientists, engineers and graduate students around topics where cutting-edge technology is put at the service of sustainable economic and social development. The focus is to bridge views and find common objectives between industry and academia, as well as within industry and within academia.

pdf Event Agenda (651 KB)

Roundtable 3 April br

Joana Baptista, Raquel Figueiredo and Sara Freitas won the “Best environmental impact hack Award” in the Lisbon Green Hackaton

The three MIT Portugal Sustainable Energy Systems PhD Students at Instituto Dom Luiz developed the idea of a sun umbrella capable of storing solar energy, through a series of photovoltaic cells on its surface and a battery.

The Lisbon Green Hackathon took place on the 12th and 13th of March and is an all night long marathon in which teams of up to four participants must come up with, develop, program and build a prototype for something that will hopefully make the world a greener place.

The idea of a solar umbrella withthe ability to store solar energy was considered the most innovative proposal in the competition. The device will allow users to charge their electronic devices (mobile phones, tablets, cameras, etc.) while enjoying a day outside and knowing that they are contributing to the decrease of their ecological footprint. In addition of protecting its users from the sun, the umbrella named CumuluSolar, manages through a set of sensors to monitor and provide, in real time, information regarding the consumption of the equipment. How to access this data? Each umbrella has a QR Code that allows instant access to a web page that displays this information

The Lisbon Green Hackathon is part of an international initiative that defies students and teachers, schools and universities to promote the use of cutting-edge technology to shape tomorrow into something more sustainable . 

Lisbon Green Hackatlon MPP Students PrizeMPP PhD Students Joana Baptista, Raquel Figueiredo e Sara Freitas at the Lisbon Green Hackathon