In the present context of a growing globalization and a society in constant change, Education for Development (ED) plays an increasingly important role in different educational environments, and it is presently a field in evident evolution in terms of practices and underlying analysis. Aware of its significance, several Portuguese institutions designed the document National Strategy for the Education for Development enacted  in Diário da República  (National Official Journal) in 2009. The conclusions drawn from the progress report designed to monitor the fulfillment of the strategy during the period of 2010-2011 state that the less covered measures correspond to the promotion of research on ED and to the reported analysis of its activities.

Seeking to meet the growing need to link research and intervention in this field, the Project Synergies ED: Knowing for better acting – promoting research/action on AD in Portugal aims at promoting ED valorization in Portugal and the quality of its intervention. In order to make this possible, we seek to:

  1. Provide opportunities and conditions for the link-up between research and action in the production of knowledge on ED;
  2. Systematize and deepen relevant knowledge for the qualification of ED players;


In order to achieve this goal, the project proposes to link Higher Education and Civil Society Organizations, as well as their collaborators, researchers, teaching staff and students, around collaborative learning, so as to create an approach towards dialogue and institutional cooperation enabling the maximization of synergies and complementariness around research and action on ED. Simultaneously, it has in mind to reinforce the qualification of these players on ED and their  interconnection with conceptual and theoretical bases. Thus, the project proposes a reinforcement of research on ED, as well as the implementation of meetings and conferences that are relevant on this area and an investment on information and dissemination of knowledge resources.

The most relevant planned activities are:

a) the creation and consolidation of a research line on ED, supported by the production of primary sources collected from enquiries about perceptions and practices on ED;

b) editing a peer-reviewed scientific journal, which will publishing national and international articles and essays reflecting on concepts, topics, metodologies and experiences on ED.  Download the journal Synergies HERE.

c) the production of research carried out in partnership by Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and Higher Education Institutions (HEOs);

d) the building of a website that will help to disseminate the results of the activities, and that will be a vehicle to promote ED as well as a catalyzer for debate and reflection;

e) an international conference;

f) the establishment of theoretical-practicalstandards of qualification on ED to enable CSOs and HEOs for training. These organizations will integrate the results of knowledge production aimed at by this Project.

The project is designed to last two years (December 2013-November 2015) and is jointly sponsored by Fundação Gonçalo da Silveira and Centro de Estudos Africanos da Universidade do Porto. It is co-financed by Camões – Instituto da Cooperação e da Língua and supported by Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian.


For a video recording of the first meeting: (in Portuguese); (in English)


For more information about Synergies ED, look up the website:



La Salete Coelho e Tânia Neves

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R&D Supported by

R&D Unit integrated in the project number UIDB/00495/2020 and UIDP/00495/2020.



Centro de Estudos Africanos da Universidade do Porto
Via panorâmica, s/n
4150-564 Porto

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