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INESC TEC and EFACEC renew their collaboration protocol for a further 25 years

On 22 June at 15:30 p.m. in the ANJE auditorium was signed a letter of intentions between INESC TEC and EFACEC for 25 years. The signature of the document took place precisely in the year that both institutions celebrate 25 years of partnership. From INESC TEC, it was José Manuel Mendonça, the President of the Board who signed the document while from EFACEC it was Ângelo Ramalho, the CEO of the company.

28th June 2018

The main goals of the signed letter are to identify new collaboration domains, to increase partnership with more agreements and projects and to continue to transfer technology and knowledge in the energy, cybersecurity and photonics fields for the market, safeguarding the intellectual property.

The signed letter represents, above all else, a tool that allows to continue what was already being done, but with better guarantees for stability in the relationship between the two entities.

“Much has been said that there is a weak or even a nonexistent relationship between industry and academia, but here is the evidence that this is not true! The lack of relationship between university and industry is just an urban legend!”, explained João Peças Lopes, Associate Director of INESC TEC during the event that began precisely with the contextualisation of the partnership.

protocol signature - João Peças Lopes

According to João Peças Lopes, in order to have a closer relationship between industry and universities, first, it is necessary to overcome certain fears, namely that the industry has to develop this relationship because the university staff are too academic and so they fail to meet deadlines or don’t meet the requirements. "Nowadays, the scenario is completely different and the scientific and technological system and the universities have long realized that they have to meet the industry requirements", said the associate director of INESC TEC.

The first agreement of the two institutions dates back to 1993, at a time in which INESC TEC developed an interface for the SCADA system of EFACEC. The partnership was expanded to the electricity distribution networks, which back then represented an EUR 2 million turnover a year. 20 years later, the Distribution Management System (DMS) of EFACEC already represents about EUR 30 million.

Both entities have been facing a number of challenges since then. “We collaborated with EFACEC during the deployment of the first Portuguese smart city in Évora in 2007. Together we developed an LV network management system in 2013, among many other projects. When INESC TEC felt the need to create a Laboratory of Smart Grids and Electric Vehicles, EFACEC was one of the institutions that quickly gave its financial support in order for that to be made possible”, explained the associate director of the research institute.

The ceremony had a debate regarding the theme “Innovate or Die – how, when and with who?”. The panel session was composed of Adelino Silva Matos, CEO of A. Silva Matos Indústria and President of ANJE, José Manuel Mendonça, President of INESC TEC’s Board, Jorge Portugal, General Manager at COTEC Portugal, António Vidigal, CEO of EDP inovação, Rodrigo Martins, Professor at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa and President of European Academy of Sciences. Ângelo Ramalho, CEO of EFACEC was the moderator.

 

The researcher mentioned in this news piece is associated with INESC TEC and UP-FEUP.