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NOVA FCSH integrates project that receives 10 M€ to study the oceans

4-OCEANS brings to Portugal the first ERC Synergy Grant in the area of Humanities.


Knowing the past of the oceans and the impact of marine life on human societies to understand the present and anticipate the future. This is the objective of 4-OCEANS, the project led in Portugal by NOVA FCSH researcher Cristina Brito which gives the country the first ERC Synergy Grant in the area of Humanities. The European grant worth 10 million euros will be distributed to the international group of four researchers who are developing the project.

“4-OCEANS will have a major impact on the production of knowledge about the oceans' past and the results will be transforming for our understanding of the scale and impacts of an ecological globalization, in the marine environment”, explains Cristina Brito. And she adds: “We will produce an Atlas of Historical Exploration of Marine Resources, with open access, which will be relevant to all academic themes that relate to the past and present of the oceans”.

For Elvira Fortunato, Vice-Rector of NOVA, “Cristina Brito is to be congratulated for the award of this European grant, which is also the recognition of the work of excellence that the University develops and reinforces the importance of sustainability and interdisciplinarity as strategic pillars of NOVA”.

At a time when the ocean assumes special relevance, the project, running between 2021 and 2027, will contribute to ocean literacy, in a world that depends on marine resources for subsistence and food security, as well as strengthening the role of the Humanities for the study and knowledge of the oceans.

In addition to Cristina Brito, from NOVA FCSH (CHAM - Humanities Center), 4-OCEANS has three other researchers: Poul Holm and Francis Ludlow, from Trinity College Dublin (Trinity Center for Environmental Humanities), and James Barrett, from Cambridge University (Department of Archaeology).

João Sàágua, Rector of NOVA, and Francisco Caramelo, Dean of NOVA FCSH, emphasize “the satisfaction with the grant now attributed to Cristina Brito, to whom all the merit must be recognized and to whom the institution must provide all the support”.


In the news (in Portuguese)