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NOVA Science Day 2020 dedicated to sustainability

The third edition of this event had a different format considering the restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

NOVA Science Day has come back for its third edition on September 22, at the Rectorate of NOVA University Lisbon.

This year, due to the restrictions imposed by the National General Directorate of Health (Direção Geral de Saúde - DGS) in response to the pandemic by COVID-19, the event was broadcasted in live streaming on NOVA's Youtube channel for the entire academic and scientific community, from the main auditorium of the Rectorate.

This science meeting aims to bring together the NOVA scientific community, as well as to promote the research that is produced at the university. This year it was dedicated to Sustainability and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). (Check the Programme of NOVA Science Day 2020)

The Rector of NOVA, Professor João Sàágua, opened the event stressing that “Sustainability is the main challenge in the 21st century”.

The session followed with the the Minister for Science, Technology and Higher Education, Professor Manuel Heitor, and the rest of the morning  was dedicated to presentations by leading figures in the field of research and innovation - the Director of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Carlos Moedas; the ERC representative in the area of Engineering and Physical Sciences, Martin Penny; and also the President of the National Innovation Agency (ANI), Eduardo Maldonado, who talked about the new European ecological pact - Green Deal. The meeting also included a presentation by the Public Information Office for the United Nations, António Ferrari.

As in previous editions, the Santander-NOVA 2019/2020 Collaborative Research Award was also be presented. This year, the award in the field of Social Sciences and Humanities has had  two winners. The head of Santander Universidades Portugal, Sofia Frère, accompanied the Rector in delivering the Prize to the projects:

InteliArt Project - "Artificial Intelligence: Effects on work and employment in Portugal" by researchers Nuno Boavida, from NOVA School of Social Sciences and Humanities in collaboration with António Brandão Moniz, from NOVA School of Science and Technology.

- Com @Rehab Project - "Communication for interactive rehabilitation in virtual reality" by researchers Maria Micaela Fonseca, from NOVA School of Science and Technology, Rute Costa, from NOVA School of Social Sciences and Humanities and Ana Rita Londral, from NOVA Medical School.

The afternoon was dedicated to brief presentations by nine NOVA researchers who develop research related to Sustainability and the Sustainable Development Goals.

The Vice-Rector for Internationalization, Professor João Amaro de Matos, presented the positioning of NOVA in international rankings and the NOVA 4 the Globe platform. The Vice-Rector for Health, Professor José Fragata, shared the various initiatives and research developed by NOVA to fight the pandemic.

Before closing, a book on photovoltaic energy was launched by Professor Elvira Fortunato, Professor Rodrigo Martins and Professor Hugo Águas.

The Vice-Rector for Research, Professor Elvira Fortunato, who is responsible for this initiative, was in charge of the closing remarks.