Overview of ISCTE - University Institute of Lisbon

The Iscte – University Institute of Lisbon was founded in 1972 as one of Portugal’s first modern universities, with the central aim of studying labour and social dynamics in a rapidly changing world. Since its establishment, the university has expanded its disciplinary reach into five schools: Iscte Business School, the School of Sociology and Public Policy, the School of Technology and Architecture, the School of Social Sciences and Humanities and the School of Digital Technologies.

The new School of Digital Technologies is based on a vision of digital transition as a process of transformation of social practices in their different contexts – production, citizenship and social participation, business models and access to goods and services, relationships – a process driven by the mobilization of information, communication and electronic technologies.

On campus, students find not only a robust intellectual tradition, with mentorship from teaching staff involved in cutting-edge research, but also a vibrant, multicultural environment. Of the approximately 10 000 students enrolled in undergraduate and postgraduate programs, nearly 20% are international, coming from 80 different countries.

Furthermore, the university is actively engaged in collaborative projects, networks and partnerships around the world, including a range of educational, training and research programs supported by the European Union. Through its commitment to internationalization, innovative research and education aligned with professional standards, Iscte prepares its students for competitive careers and thoughtful lives in the 21st century.

In accordance with the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Iscte- University Institute of Lisbon considers the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) fundamental to eradicate poverty, reduce inequalities, protect the environment and promote prosperity and well-being for all by 2030. Iscte, within the scope of its Sustainability Policy, recognises its responsibility as a higher education institution that intends to contribute actively to the SDG.

The mission of Iscte is to create and convey scientific knowledge according to the best international standards, training highly skilled professionals, mainly at the postgraduate level, in the areas of management, information technology and architecture, social sciences and public policy, for the advancement of society.

This mission is achieved by improving the research-teaching nexus with a strong applied focus, by fostering multidisciplinary learning, and by maximizing the interplay between entrepreneurship, technology and innovation to prepare competent professionals able to deal effectively with the forthcoming challenges of society, within profit and non-profit organizations.

The three main vectors of this mission – research, teaching and learning, and service provided to community – embody the vision of Iscte as a research university focused on continuous improvement dynamics of the institution in the various fields of its management and activity, such as:

  • A board of highly skilled faculty and researchers representing the best international standards;
  • The internationalization of research, teaching and knowledge transfer, and the academic mobility of faculty members and students, which fulfils the integration of Iscte in international research and education networks;
  • The transfer and exchange of the produced scientific and technological knowledge, particularly through development of products, provision of services to society, lifelong education and promotion of entrepreneurship and employability;
  • The implementation and promotion of activities that grant access and fruition of cultural and scientific goods to individual users and groups inside and outside Iscte;
  • The continuous interaction with society, contributing to the analysis and resolution of problems at national and local levels, as well as establishment of partnerships with organizations committed to the cultural, social and economic development of the country;
  • The professionalization of infrastructure management and qualification by means of creating a culture of excellence that provides effective support to research, teaching and knowledge transfer activities in order to ensure institutional sustainability.

Facts and Numbers

Teaching and learning

Degree programmes | Number of students – 97 | 10535

Undergraduate programmes | Number of students – 16 | 4800

Masters | Number of students – 57 | 4616

PhD | Number of students – 24 | 937

Female students – 53%

International students enrolled – 22%

Number of student nationalities – 96

Number of non-degree programmes: postgraduate | Number of students – 25 | 699

Total programmes (degree and non-degree) | Total students – 122 | 11052

Students in graduate degree programmes (masters, doctorates and postgraduate degrees) – 57%

Access to Higher Education

Search Satisfaction Index (Strength Index) — 2020/2021

(Candidates placed in 1st option/number of vacancies) – 198%


Research Units – 8

Research Centres classified as Excellent or Very Good in international FCT evaluations – 100%

Scientific Journals – 7

Scientific Publications (2020) – 1905

Indexed Scientific Publications (WoS and Scopus) – 823

Publications in 1st and 2nd quartile Scientific Journals (WoS and Scopus) – 448

Human Resources

Total full-time Faculty – 316

Full-time faculty holding PhD – 99,7%

Total researchers participating in 100% R&D – 454

Total non-teaching staff (December 2018) – 280