COTEC awards the exemplary cooperation of Aveiro University and PT Inovação

02/12/2013     COTEC Portugal / Collaboration

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The cooperation between Aveiro University and PT Inovação, that relies on a history of four decades, wins the first edition of the contest "Exemplary Cases of University-Industry Cooperation", promoted by COTEC Portugal – Corporate Association for Innovation. The award was delivered on November’s 27th during the 10th National COTEC Innovation Meeting, which took place at Culturgest, in Lisbon, with the presence of the President of the Portuguese Republic, Aníbal Cavaco Silva.

With this contest, open to the 15 Universities that integrate the Council of Deans of the Portuguese Universities, COTEC intends to award and encourage the cooperation, in a continuous manner, between Universities and Enterprises, with beneficial results for both parties. Sixteen proposals were received, being the first prize awarded to Aveiro University and Honourable Mentions been given to Lisbon, Oporto and Minho Universities. "The partnership between Aveiro University and PT Inovação is an example of the excellence associated to the dynamic which led to the creation, in 1973, of new Portuguese universities targeted at the cooperation with economics”, pleases Carlos Pascoal Neto, Aveiro Academy’s Vice-Chancellor.

The creation of the Telecommunications’ Studies Centre (PT Inovação’s predecessor) in the beginning of the 70’s, was definitely decisive for the origin of Aveiro’s Academy, positioned, initially, in the company’s premises. This crib would influence the structure of the departments’ core and the definition of Aveiro University’s academic and investigation fields, specially aimed at electronics and telecommunications.

In this context, it is highlighted the creation of a decisive infrastructure in the relation of both institutions and in the evolution of Telecommunications in the Region of Aveiro and in Portugal: the Telecommunications’ Institute (IT) and, particularly, Aveiro’s hub, entity of which Aveiro University and PT Inovação are founders.

Since then, there have been numerous research and technological development projects (R&TD), national and European, in which Aveiro University/IT and PT Inovação were pioneers, mainly in the development of broadband and optical fibre infrastructures, as well as in telecommunications’ advanced products and services and digital services supporting economic, social, cultural and administrative areas.

Funding, professional insertions and new businesses

"In every University-Industry cooperation parameters, the mutual aid between Aveiro University and PT Inovação is shown in an extremely positive way, qualitatively and quantitatively speaking", states Pascoal Neto. He stands out the "conjoined investigation projects with a significant funding volume, the production of patents, the professional insertion (over half of the current PT Inovação’s Boards are graduated in Aveiro University), the emergence of new businesses and products and, specially, the creation of a cluster and of an innovative and entrepreneurial ecosystem around telecommunications, centred in Aveiro, where both fundamental pillars are Aveiro University and PT Inovação".

Deriving from the innovation’s dynamic and knowledge transfer, as well as from the fostering of entrepreneurship in Aveiro University, resulted about 40 start-ups and other corporate initiatives in Aveiro, connected to the Information Technologies, Communication and Electronics sector, lots of them promoted by prior academy’s students, gathered in the Inova-Ria cluster, in which belong Aveiro University and PT Inovação. The cluster represents, today, 60 associates and has an annual business volume of 365 million Euros. Aveiro University, IT and PT Inovação were, evenly, three of the founding entities of the Competitiveness and Technology National Hub, with headquarters in Aveiro.

About 50 Master and 20 Specialization Thesis, with conjoined guidance, and a hundred of professional internships, just in the past ten years, help justifying why COTEC was chosen. The association also took into account the 140 million Euros invested in R&TD projects, with external funding, and the 4,8 million Euros of technology transfer contracts, directly paid by PT Inovação to the Aveiro Academy, throughout the past 40 years.


Image source: Oficial Page of the Presidency of the Portuguese Republic

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