The increasing importance of Brazil as an emerging key global player in education, research and innovation is to be underlined with the opening of a new UK university office in São Paulo this week.
King’s College London is to lead the setting up of the office which is hoped to serve as an international hub for UK universities in Brazil and is also aimed at further developing Brazil’s reputation for research excellence within Latin America and globally. Only the US, China and India currently have similar King’s international offices.
Vice-Principal (International) of King’s Dr Joanna Newman said: ‘This is part of our growing commitment with international partners to developing research that speaks directly to global questions and needs.
‘We are committed to strengthening and deepening our relationship with Brazil and we are engaging through a broad range of activities, research, collaboration and exchange. Having presence in country will strengthen those mutual ties and help lead in the quest for high-quality research output across all areas of knowledge.’
Dr Newman welcomed Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff’s recent announcement that a further 100,000 international scholarships are to be offered in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) as part of its Science Without Borders scheme which has seen nearly 9,000 Brazilian students come to the UK to study in the past two and a half years, some of them to King’s.
‘We hope this is only the beginning of an expanding partnership between the UK and Brazil in all sorts of areas of mutual interest, from the reform of the public health sector to tropical medicine to computer science right through to social science, humanities and the arts.'
Dr Anthony Pereira Director of King’s Brazil Institute added: ‘This is great news and demonstrates the Brazilian Government’s commitment to this prestigious and extremely successful programme.
‘Brazil accounts for more than two-thirds of South America’s entire research output and is taking a leading role for the region with high quality research output growing at three times the global average. The potential of these graduates to make a real difference – in research, in innovation, in teaching, in the creation of new firms - is enormous.’
The office opening coincides with the gathering of some 1,100 universities from 46 countries including the UK at the Universia International Meeting of Vice-Chancellors in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (28th and 29th of July 2014). The main theme of the meeting is ‘The university of the 21st century: a reflection from Ibero-America.’
*King’s has existing partnership with the University of São Paulo and also a bilateral agreement with the São Paulo Research Foundation – FAPESP. Since 2010, new collaborative research projects involving King’s and USP staff have attracted funding from FAPESP, covering areas such as: human health, genomics, nanotechnology and philosophy.
*The latest development is a new joint PhD between the Institute of International Relations at the University of São Paulo, with students in War Studies , the Department of Political Economy (DPE) and the King's Brazil Institute to enrol next year.
*King’s delegation to Brazil includes Principal Sir Professor Rick Trainor, Vice-Principal (International) Joanna Newman, Brazil Institute Director Dr Anthony Pereira and Head of the School of Natural and Mathematical Sciences, Professor Michael Luck.
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