Carnegie Mellon Portugal Program Projects Receive Excellent Reviews


November 10-12, 2011


"The panel reviewed 22 projects. Of these, ten projects are continuations from last year, and twelve projects are new. There are also three Math projects that are being kicked off this year.

To avoid even the shadow of a conflict of interest, the Directors of the CMU-Portugal Program, Profs. Joao Barros and Jose Moura were specifically recused from the meeting where the final recommendations concerning the projects were deliberated. These recommendations are detailed below.

The three Math projects presented their plans, and received initial feedback from this review committee. These three projects were not reviewed in detail since this was their kickoff presentation. However, the feedback of the review committee was uniformly very positive. It was felt that these projects are potentially of high quality, as well as relevant to the ICT theme of the CMU-Portugal Program. Thus the review committee strongly supports their induction into the program.

The committee is impressed by the conception of the CMU-Portugal program. It organically involves postgraduate students in dual-degree programs between Portuguese universities and CMU. It also involves, as a prerequisite, industrial collaboration in all projects right from inception of a project. It requires close collaboration between Portuguese researchers and students and their CMU counterparts. Further, it requires involvement and participation of more than one Portuguese institution in each project. Most of the chosen projects to date have also had very clear paths for the translation of ideas into application. Together, all these elements have contributed greatly to the success of the program.

Based on the review of the projects, the committee has recommended increased funding in the case of two projects, increased allocation of Ph.D students in the case of two projects, and recommends a reevaluation of the funding under this program for three projects.

With few exceptions, the committee was very favorably impressed both by the relevance of the projects to Portugal, as well as the world class research strength of the Portuguese teams and their CMU counterparts. In many cases the projects have access to unique Portuguese databases that are especially valuable. In many cases, the projects involve very high quality and innovative Portuguese startup companies. In some cases, these companies are very close to developing marketable products, which speaks very highly of their success in taking ideas from invention to venture. In many other projects, existing Portuguese companies are closely involved with the projects. The projects have successfully fostered active partnership among Portuguese institutions and universities, and between them and Carnegie Mellon, both at the faculty and student levels.

The overall committee's conclusion is the CMU-Portugal program has been very well conceived and executed, and that it has been extraordinarily successful."

Review Team:
Chair: Prof. P. R. Kumar, Texas A&M
Prof. Adam Wolisz, Technische Universitaet Berlin (TUB)
Prof. H. S. Jamadagni, Indian Institute of Science (IIS)
Prof. David Padua, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)
Prof. Frank Fitzek, University of Aalborg
Prof. Ulises Cortés, Technical University of Catalonia (UPC)
Prof. Carles Sierra, Artificial Intelligence Research Institute (IIIA) Spanish National Research Council (CSIC)

Directors (ex officio):
Prof. João Barros, Director of ICTI@Portugal
Prof. José Moura, Director of ICTI@Carnegie Mellon

Prof. João Barros, Director of ICTI@Portugal Prof. José Moura, Director of ICTI@Carnegie Mellon