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Portuguese Research Institutions in History


The growth in historical research in Portugal over the last two decades is largely due to the conditions provided by public agencies and private bodies with direct responsibility for the funding of projects, programmes and research institutes.

A number of successful commercial initiatives that have involved the publication of history books and series, as well as some praiseworthy actions on the part of independent authors who have taken the risk of venturing into a relatively underdeveloped publishing market, should not allow us to overlook the crucial role played by university institutes that have supported two fundamental types of research projects. On the one hand, they have supported projects leading to the award of academic degrees or to advancement in the researcher’s university career; on the other hand, there have been projects integrated into pluriannual research programmes that have included agreements for the presentation and publication of results.

Amongst the direct funders of the historical research undertaken by these university institutes, one should naturally highlight the role played by the Foundation for Science and Technology (Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia – FCT), which is a public agency belonging to the Ministry of Science and Higher Education. The funding guaranteed by the FCT results from funds allocated in the Portuguese state budget and from European funds and programmes designed to support scientific and technological development.

The research institutes currently accredited by the FCT in the field of history and archaeology are presented in an appendix. The aim of this presentation is merely to furnish the bare details about these units, providing those who are interested with the necessary information for establishing further contacts.

This appendix lists the research units that have applied in good time for pluriannual funding designed to consolidate their conditions for carrying out research projects. Although this list does not include all the institutes that support research projects in the field of History and Archaeology, we can safely consider them to be amongst the best equipped to provide a sound platform for promoting and undertaking research projects both at the present moment and in the near future.

In the period from 2000 to 2002, the overall funding given to these units was roughly 2,650,000 euros. The amount allocated to each unit depends on the qualitative classification awarded by an assessment panel that periodically analyses the results of their activity. Further information about these units can be found at:

Besides this form of structural funding, the research units also benefit from funding that is given to specific research projects, selected after an open request for applications in which the merits of the respective projects are assessed in the light of their aims and expected results.

The following table indicates the evolution in both the number of accepted research projects and the amount of funding.

Year of application
# projects approved
Total funding ( )

This table shows a considerable increase in 2000, which was not sustained in the following year. Over the period in question, the amount of funding granted corresponds to circa 20-25% of the total amount requested by the applicants. For more information about projects in progress and a general listing of the projects undertaken in the field of historical and archaeological research since 1995, consult the following site:

Another important indicator of the successful creation of conditions favouring a continued growth in research is the number of awards made by the FCT, not only for master’s degrees, doctorates or post-doctorate research, but also for temporary recruitments made under the scope of projects undertaken by research units. In the area of History and Archaeology, 403 individual awards have been made over the last ten years, with roughly half of these being awarded for Ph.D. theses. Further information can be obtained at:

By way of an overall appreciation of the quantitative data gathered together here, it should be stressed that the incentives provided in both individual and institutional terms have been decisive for ensuring the sustained development of research in History. The results of such incentives are visible in the growing number of publications made in the form of books, conference proceedings and articles in national journals. A less visible reflection of the usefulness of these incentives can be found in the increased number of publications in international journals, as is proved by the statistical data analysed in Rui Santos’ brief comment on the internationalisation of Portuguese historiography.

Such limitations may, however, be overcome, provided that the research institutes are better and more systematically assessed on the basis of their performance, and also by virtue of their highly desirable and greater involvement in international networks of excellence.

Appendix – List of Portuguese Research Units in History and Archaeology

Centro de História da Cultura da Universidade Nova de Lisboa
Affiliation: Universidade Nova de Lisboa – Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas
Director: José Esteves Pereira
Keywords: Culture; Politics; Society; Religion
URL: http://chc-unl.planetaclix.pt
e-mail address: chcunl@clix.pt

CEPESE - Centro de Estudos da População, Economia e Sociedade
Affiliation: Universidade do Porto – Faculdade de Letras
Director: Fernando Alberto Pereira de Sousa
Keywords: Population; Society; Economy; Education
URL: http://www.cepese.pt/
e-mail address: cepese@cepese.pt

Centro Interuniversitário de História da Espiritualidade
Affiliation: Universidade do Porto – Faculdade de Letras
Director: José Adriano Moreira de Freitas Carvalho
Keywords: Spirituality; Religious History; Literary History
URL: http://homepage.esoterica.pt/~ciuhe
e-mail address: ciuhe@esoterica.pt

GEHVID - Grupo de Estudos de História da Viticultura Duriense e do Vinho do Porto
Affiliation: Universidade do Porto – Faculdade de Letras
Director: Francisco Ribeiro da Silva
Keywords: Wine; Vine; Region
URL: http://www.letras.up.pt/gehvid
e-mail address: gehvid@letras.up.pt

Centro de Estudos Históricos
Affiliation: Universidade Nova de Lisboa - Reitoria
Director: João Alves Dias
Keywords: History of Portugal; Palaeography and Diplomatic
URL: http://members.tripod.com.br/CEH/
e-mail address: CEH@fcsh.unl.pt

CIDEHUS-UE - Centro Interdisciplinar de História, Culturas e Sociedades da Universidade de Évora
Affiliation: Universidade de Évora
Director: Mafalda Soares da Cunha
Keywords: Southern Europe and Mediterranean History; Material Culture and Archaeology; Social and Political Elites; Social-Cultural Identities
URL: http://www.cidehus.uevora.pt
e-mail address: cidehus@uevora.pt

Centro de História da Universidade de Lisboa
Affiliation: Universidade de Lisboa – Faculdade de Letras
Director: João Medina
Keywords: Institutions; Heritage; Society; Economy
URL: http://www.fl.ul.pt/unidades/centros/c_historia/index.htm
e-mail address: centro.historia@mail.fl.ul.pt

Centro de Estudos Arqueológicos das Universidades de Coimbra e Porto
Affiliation: Universidade de Coimbra – Faculdade de Letras
Director: Conceição Lopes
Keywords: Archaeology; Epigraphy; Numismatics; Landscape
URL: http://www.uc.pt/iauc/cea/
e-mail address: iarq@ci.uc.pt

Centro de História da Sociedade e da Cultura
Affiliation: Universidade de Coimbra – Faculdade de Letras
Director: João Marinho dos Santos
Keywords: Economies and Societies; Cultures and Ideologies; Theories and Practices of Political Power; Analysis and Publication of Sources
URL: http://www.uc.pt/chsc
e-mail address: chsc@ci.uc.pt

Instituto de História Contemporânea
Affiliation: Universidade Nova de Lisboa – Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas
Director: Fernando José Mendes Rosas
Keywords: Contemporary History; History of Portugal; History Research; Education
URL: http://ihc.fcsh.unl.pt
e-mail address: ihcfcsh@mail.telepac.pt

Gabinete de História Económica e Social
Affiliation: Universidade Técnica de Lisboa – ISEG
Director: Nuno João de Oliveira Valério
Keywords: History; Economics; Social; Portugal
URL: http://pascal.iseg.utl.pt/~ghes/
e-mail address: ghes@iseg.utl.pt

Centro de História de Além-Mar
Affiliation: Universidade Nova de Lisboa – Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas
Director: João Paulo Azevedo de Oliveira e Costa
Keywords: History; Colonization; Discoveries; Globalization
URL: http://cham.fcsh.unl.pt/
e-mail address: cham@fcsh.unl.pt

Centro de Estudos Interdisciplinares do Século XX da Universidade de Coimbra - CEIS20
Affiliation: Universidade de Coimbra
Director: Luís Manuel Soares dos Reis Torgal
Keywords: Twentieth-Century; History of Science; Contemporary History; Portugal - Europe
URL: http://www.uc.pt/ceis20
e-mail address: ceis20@ci.uc.pt

Instituto de História Moderna da Universidade do Porto
Affiliation: Universidade do Porto – Faculdade de Letras
Director: Luís António de Oliveira Ramos
Keywords: Territorial planning; Seaboard resources; North-western seaports; International relations
URL: http://www.letras.up.pt/dh/ihm-up/default.htm
e-mail address: ihm-up@letras.up.pt

Centro de Estudos de História e Filosofia da Ciência
Affiliation: Universidade de Évora
Director: Augusto José dos Santos Fitas
Keywords: History of Science; History of Technology; Philosophy of Science; Education and Science
URL: http://www.cehfc.uevora.pt
e-mail address: cehfc@uevora.pt

Centro Português de Estudos do Sudeste Asiático
Director: Ivo Manuel Veiga Carneiro de Sousa
Keywords: Southeast Asia; Human, Political and Social Sciences
URL: http://www.cepesa.pa-net.pt/
e-mail address: cepesa@mail.telepac.pt

Núcleo de Arqueologia da Universidade do Minho
Affiliation: Universidade do Minho
Director: Maria Manuela dos Reis Martins
Keywords: Landscape Archaeology; Archaeology and Urban History; Settlement Archaeology; History of Technologies
URL: http://www.uminho.pt
e-mail address: narq@uaum.uminho.pt

Centro de Estudos de Património
Affiliation: Universidade do Algarve – Faculdade de Ciências Humanas e Sociais
Director: Nuno Gonçalo Viana Pereira Ferreira Bicho
Keywords: Cultural Heritage of the Algarve; History; Archaeology; Art History
URL: http://www.ualg.pt/fchs/hap/cep
e-mail address: cep@ualg.pt

Centro de Estudos de História Religiosa
Affiliation: Universidade Católica Portuguesa
Director: Manuel José Macário do Nascimento Clemente
Keywords: Church History; Religiosity; Christianism; Religion and Society
URL: http://www.ucp.pt/cehr
e-mail address: cehr@cehr.ucp.pt

Centro de História das Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa
Affiliation: Universidade de Lisboa – Faculdade de Ciências
Director: Ana Isabel da Silva Araújo Simões
Keywords: History of Science; History of Technology; History of the Nautical Sciences; History of Health Sciences
URL: http://scientia.artenumerica.org/centroUL.html
e-mail address: asimoes@fc.ul.pt

Centro de Arqueologia da Universidade de Lisboa
Affiliation: Universidade de Lisboa – Faculdade de Letras
Director: Victor Manuel dos Santos Gonçalves
Keywords:, Prehistory and Protohistory; Ancient World
e-mail address: vsg.rm@mail.telepac.pt

Campo Arqueológico de Mértola
Director: Cláudio Figueiredo Torres
Keywords: History; Archaeology; Middle Ages; Islam
e-mail address: reva.camertola@mail.telepac.pt

Centro de Investigação Histórica – Faculdade de Letras da Universidade do Porto
Affiliation: Universidade do Porto – Faculdade de Letras
Director: Armando Luís Gomes de Carvalho Homem
Keywords: Society, Politics and Power in the Middle Ages; Military Orders
URL: http://www.letras.up.pt/dh
e-mail address: dh@letras.up.pt

Instituto de Estudos Medievais
Affiliation: Universidade Nova de Lisboa – Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas
Director: Luis Filipe Llach Krus
Keywords: Middle Ages; Interdisciplinarity; Hispanic Studies; Cultural Heritage
URL: http://www.fcsh.unl.pt/iem
e-mail address: estudosmedievais@fcsh.unl.pt

Centro de Estudos de História Contemporânea Portuguesa
Affiliation: Instituto Superior de Ciências do Trabalho e da Empresa
Director: Magda de Avelar Pinheiro
Keywords: Economic History; Politic and Institutional History; Social History; Cultural History
URL: http://www.iscte.pt/investigacao.php?tipo=centros_cehcp
e-mail address: magda.pinheiro@iscte.pt



Copyright 2004, ISSN 1645-6432
e-JPH, Vol.1, number 2, Winter 2003