The Department of Architecture and Multimedia Gallaecia (DAMG) of the Universidade Portucalense was created in 2021, within the scope of the integration and transmission of the Escola Superior Gallaecia, its Integrated Master in Architecture and Urbanism and its Degree in Multimedia and Arts, at UPT (Notice No. 19510/2021 of DR No. 201, 25.10.2021).
The experience of more than 25 years of quality and rigour in higher education has provided the graduates of the Integrated Master in Architecture and Urbanism (MIAU) with an employability rate of 95.5%, one of the highest employability rates of architecture graduates in Portugal. In the degree in Multimedia and Arts, creativity and entrepreneurship are highly encouraged throughout the course, which has allowed its graduates to integrate 100% in the labour market.
In recent years, several national and international awards have been won, due to research projects, pedagogical project, work of students, graduates and teachers. This high success rate is only possible due to a qualified faculty, who complement each other and are dedicated to a personalised teaching, with varied pedagogical methods and well oriented work; but also due to the academic environment of mutual help, of search for knowledge, of more participative learning, of constant incentive to academic improvement and to the development of each student’s potential.
The international environment shared between students and teachers of different nationalities has also contributed to the regular development of international projects in different contexts, to the participation of students in visits, conferences, exhibitions and workshops in different countries, to the better integration of graduates in the Portuguese and foreign labour market, namely with graduates working in Portugal, Spain, United Kingdom, France, Switzerland, Norway, Australia and China. It should be noted that the publication of the syllabus in the European Directive for Architecture, enables MIAU graduates to sign projects in all countries of the European Union.
Regarding research, the Gallaecia Research Centre is responsible for the research and scientific production of DAMG. The team has regularly won funding for research projects, as coordinator or partner, in applications from FCT (SEISMIC-V project), Culture 2000 programme (VerSus project) or Creative Europe (3DPAST project). The team also provides consultancy and services to Municipalities, as well as support to communities in Parish Councils and Santa Casa da Misericórdia. The main research projects won and coordinated by the team have been mainly dedicated to vernacular heritage, earthen architecture, World Heritage and multimedia. Currently under development, the projects “Versus+: Heritage for People” of the Creative Europe programme, with the participation of 4 countries (2019-2023); and the project “SizaAtlas: Filling the gaps” FCT project, coordinated by ISCTE, with partnership from FAUP and UPT (2021-2024).
Due to the active development of projects, training and capacity building, valorisation and protection of vernacular heritage and earthen architecture, the team has been awarded with the UNESCO Chair in “Earthen Architecture, Sustainable Development and Constructive Cultures”, by UNITWIN and Chaire UNESCO da CRAterre; and is an institutional member of the Ibero-American Network PROTERRA of architecture and construction with earth.
At UPT, the Department of Architecture and Multimedia Gallaecia and its Research Centre will continue to actively contribute to training in art, architecture, science, culture and technology.