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University of Warwick students fly the flag for Portuguese research

L-R Vânia Horta de Passo and Joana Lourenço Two Portuguese students at the University of Warwick are behind the organisation of a conference aiming to put Portugal’s academic expertise on the map.

Coventry resident Joana Lourenço and Leamington Spa-based Vânia Horta de Passo are part of the nine-strong organising committee for the LUSO 2012 conference, which brings together British and UK-based Portuguese researchers and students to boost research, innovation and entrepreneurship.

The conference, which takes place in London on June 16, has the mission of “Powering-up Portugal” and aims to encourage communication and interaction among Portuguese researchers and students in the fields of science and technology, entrepreneurship and innovation, arts and humanities and community cooperation and development.

It will feature speakers such as Nuno Crato, the Portuguese Minister for Education and Science, Sir Tim Hunt, Nobel Prize in Medicine 2001, Miguel Castro Coelho, economist and former senior policy adviser and George Lomonossoff, BBSRC Innovator of the Year 2012.

Ms Lourenço, who is studying for a PhD in the department of Psychology at the University of Warwick, said: “The quality of Portuguese researchers is becoming more and more renowned internationally and LUSO 2012 will surely be a unique opportunity to engage in discussion regarding Portugal’s recent achievements, potential and strategies to pull ahead of the competition in science, technology and in other areas in a time of challenges.

“Portuguese researchers are active across the whole of the UK, so LUSO 2012 is an opportunity to increase the visibility and promote interaction and collaboration between members of the Portuguese and British academic and scientific communities.

“It has been a pleasure to work with the team of researchers organising LUSO 2012.

“The result is an exciting line-up of speakers and also, for the first time in the history of the event, a networking forum that brings together participants and a few selected companies.”

Ms Horta de Passo, who is studying for a PhD in the School of Life Sciences, added: “Portuguese researchers living and working in the UK are making valuable contributions across the fields of science, technology, the arts and medicine.

“We aim to highlight these achievements and support communication and knowledge sharing among researchers working across these diverse areas.

“Everybody is welcome to attend LUSO 2012.”


Notes to editors

Further information on the conference can be found at

Or please contact Anna Blackaby, University of Warwick press officer, on +44 (0)2476 575910 or +44 (0) 7785 433155 or