Madeira, the transhuman utopia

The M-ITI of Funchal is one of the frontiers of global research in the communication of people and robots. The University of Madeira contributes to the Campus RUP alliance with excellent research in AI, chemistry, fluid dynamics, laurisilva ecosystems, wine science and 4.0 transformation of the tourism industry

Léalo en Español.

THE utopia of a harmonious coexistence of humans and robots is studied and experimented in the Madeira Interactive Technologies Institute, the M-ITI, a cutting-edge research center created by the University of Madeira and Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, a world reference in the development of artificial intelligence. From its headquarters in Funchal, the M-ITI studies how to improve communication between people and computers. Its focus is decisive for the applications of artificial intelligence and the takeoff of industries 4.0. The M-ITI trains specialists through two Doctoral programs, one in Cyber-Physical Systems, taught jointly by the University of Madeira and the Carnegie Mellon of Pittsburgh, and another in Digital Media, with the support of the universities of Austin (Texas), Lisbon and Oporto. The Campus RUP alliance, formed by seven public universities from the outermost regions of the European Union, will benefit from this knowledge pole in new technologies, through the mobility scheme foreseen in the coalition project: 243 university students from the Antilles (Martinique and Guadeloupe), Guyana, La Réunion, Azores, La Laguna and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria will stay at the University of Madeira during the three years of the first phase of the Campus RUP project.

Human-robotics communication is not the only specialization of the University of Madeira. His research in cancer, pedagogical innovation, Mathematics, Chemistry, plasma physics, agro-food (with a specific focus on wine production), tourism industry 4.0, biodiversity of laurisilva –the subtropical forest characteristic of the archipelagos of Macaronesia– and algae applications receive international recognition and singulate the scientific offer of the Campus RUP project.

The University of Madeira will send one hundred university students (including students, researchers, professors and administration and services staff) to stay at other universities in the EU-RUP area, during the three years of the first phase of the Campus RUP project, which chooses to be elected in the European Universities Initiative of the Erasmus Plus program of the European Union. Another hundred members of the university community will study on the virtual platform of the Campus RUP without leaving Penteada, the campus of the University of Madeira in Funchal.

University of Madeira in the European Universities Initiative

The role of the University of Madeira in the management of the Campus RUP alliance is to check compliance with the legal requirements to create joint degrees or move between the universities of the alliance, define the specific management structures for the day to day of the Campus RUP , and establish a framework of collaboration between companies and universities that participate in the project. Its rector at present, José Manuel Cunha Leal Molarinho Carmo, is Professor of Mathematics, researcher in Logic applied to Computer Sciences, was re-elected for the term between 2017 and 2020.

The University of Madeira, of public ownership, was founded in 1988. Previously, there had existed in Funchal Superior Institutes of different scientific and artistic disciplines. In 1988 the university campus of Penteada was inaugurated. The institution does not indicate on its website data on the number of students. According to Eurostat, the number of Tertiary Education students in the Autonomous Region of Madeira was 3,180 people in 2017, the latest data available.

Currently, the University of Madeira teaches about 20 undergraduate degrees, 22 Master’s degrees and 8 Doctorate programs in its four faculties –Arts and Humanities, Exact Sciences and Engineering, Social Sciences and Life Sciences–. It also has two Institutes where Superior Cycles are taught.

It has three research units of its own: the Research Center for Education, the M-ITI – jointly with the Carnegie Mellon University and the Tecnopolo de Madeira, the public body that promotes R & D in the autonomous region of Madeira– and the Center of Research in Chemistry. His plasma laboratory specializes in the study and applications of low temperature plasma and fluid engineering. It receives funds from the European Union and the FCT, the Portuguese Fund for Science and Technology, and support from the Dutch Philips. In addition, the University of Madeira participates in other research centers specializing in Atlantic Applied Economic Studies, Mathematics, Sports and Health Sciences and Health Technologies, among other specialties.

University of Madeira

Year of creation





Campus of Penteada, Funchal.


José Manuel Cunha Leal Molarinho Carmo, Professor of Mathematics.


20 Degree Degrees, 22 Master’s Degrees and 8 Doctorate programs in its four faculties -Artes and Humanities, Exact Sciences and Engineering, Social Sciences and Life Sciences.


The University of Madeira «performs scientific research activities, promoting the dissemination and economic and social appreciation of knowledge and technological innovation. Guarantees human education at the highest level, in its cultural, scientific, artistic, technical and professional aspects, taking the academic studies taught in it to obtain a university degree, a technical qualification or another type of official recognition. It pursues the goal of preparing its students for the challenges of global society and lifelong learning, providing them with scientific knowledge, technical competence and cross-training.

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