Accepted paper:

France and Germany as a reference in the organization of the Portuguese engineers schools: from polytechnic schools to the Instituto Superior Técnico -IST (1837-1911)


Ana Cardoso de Matos (University of Évora)

Paper short abstract:

The aim of the paper is to analyze the influence of French and German schools as models for the creation of the Portuguese engineering schools. The schools created during the 19th century reflect the influence of the French models, the creation of the IST in 1911 was influenced by the German model.

Paper long abstract:

The dissemination of engineering training institutions in Europe's margins during the 19th century was mostly influenced by the models of French engineering schools and Portugal was no exception. The diffusion of the French model was favored not only by the fact that the political administration of the country was influenced by the French model, but also by the fact that many of the men that were in charge of creating the engineering schools in Portugal completed their studies in France. Also the teaching deliver in the French schools, namely in the Ecole des ponts et chausses or in the Ecole Central, provided to the engineers the knowledge and the competences to materialize the great infrastructural works needed in the country. However, in certain engineering branches, as it was the case of the mines, although the French model was important, the Germany one had also manifested. By the end of the 19th century the German model became more important and the creation of the Instituto Superior Técnico in 1911 was clearly an example of this influence.

panel P31
International circulation of engineering teaching models in the 19th and the 20th centuries: the creation of European and Latin American engineering schools in historical and comparative perspectives