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Universidade Nova de Lisboa


General information

EUC Number (Charta): 29191
Erasmus Code: P LISBOA03
History, Past and Present
Universities in Portugal have an ancient tradition. The very first University was founded in 1289 as an answer to the growing need for education, free transmission of knowledge and exchange of ideas, as well as to communication with other European Universities. This tradition still re-mains today, keeping up with the country’s evolution and becoming one of the basic institutions of Portuguese society.
The Universidade Nova de Lisboa, or NOVA, was founded on the 11th August 1973, be-coming the most recent of Lisbon’s three state Universities. Created at a time of expansion and diversification of higher education, NOVA adopted an organizational structure from the very beginning that was considered new in the context of Portuguese Universities. Innovation im-plied the creation of a departmental and interdisciplinary structure, joining Science and Tech-nology, Human and Social Sciences and Medical Sciences. In this context, NOVA was also a response to an ever-increasing demand for higher education in Portugal, in general, and in the city and surrounding areas of Lisbon, in particular.
After four years, it was necessary to make some changes to the first model to honour the NOVA’s commitment towards excellence and research. However, the main criteria when the University was established - innovating higher education in order to make it correspond to the need of assurance of the social and economic development of the country - still remains. During its first years, the University offered mainly graduate and specialist programmes, but since the end of 1977 - when the first regular undergraduate degree programmes started - the University has been steadily expanding its academic programmes.
Innovation and quality are a common feature to all units of the NOVA. From the beginning, innovation in the courses lectured and in the creation of new programmes never offered before in Portugal, such as Computer Sciences (1976), Communication Sciences (1979), Master of Business Administration (1980), Musicology (1980), Physics and Materials Engineering (1981), PhD program in Law (1996-97), Master in Public Administration (2005). The usual and valuable interchange of knowledge between the University and government organisations, professional bodies and industry, reflects the constant preoccupation with the teaching quality.
The NOVA is a decentralised University which means that its nine academic units enjoy a great deal of scientific, academic and administrative autonomy. The University is not confined to one single campus as its five Faculties, three Institutes and School have various locations in and outside Lisbon. Currently, NOVA has about 1 128 academic staff members, approximately 50% of them with a PhD degree, and it has about 13 700 students. Carrying out research projects in 41 Research Centres, the University is devoted to international education and cooperation, mainly in the EU and in Portuguese speaking countries. NOVA has invested in contributing to-wards social, cultural and economic development, as well as in its status as an European Uni-versity.
Omnis Civitas Contra Se Divisa Non Stabit («All the city divided against itself will not remain») is the motto of an University that appeals to unity, beyond the common diversity of Academe, metaphorically understood as «Civitas»: city of knowledge, academics community, organisation whose main purpose is to increase the social capital, represented by education, making it available to the country.

Network memberships

Associacao das Universidades de Lingua Portuguesa (AULP)
Conseil Européen pour les Langues (European Language Council) (CEL/ELC)
European Ethics Network (EEN)
European Society for Engineering Education (SEFI)
European University Continuing Education Network (EUCEN)
Network of Universities from Capitals of Europe (UNICA)


ranked 401-450 by QS World University Rankings (2011)
ranked 384 by QS World University Rankings (2010)
ranked 341 by Times Higher Education Supplement (THES) Ranking of World Universities (2007)
ranked 277 by Times Higher Education Supplement (THES) Ranking of World Universities (2006)

Faculties / Schools

FD - Faculty of Law (Faculdade de Direito)
FCM - Faculty of Medical Sciences (Faculdade de Ciências Médicas)
FCT - Faculty of Science and Technology (Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia)
FCSH - Faculty of Social and Human Sciences (Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas)
ITQB - Institute of Chemical and Biological Technology (Instituto de Tecnologia Química e Biológica)
IHMT - Institute of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (Instituto de Higiene e Medicina Tropical)
ISEGI - Institute of Statistics and Information Management (Instituto Superior de Estatística e Gestão de Informação)
Nova SBE - Nova School of Business and Economics
ENSP - School of Public Health (Escola Nacional de Saúde Pública)
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