Research is one of the main contributions that academia can make to society. With this in mind, IADE supported the creation of the Design and Communication Research Unit – UNIDCOM/IADE, where most of its R&D+i activities take place.

UNIDCOM/IADE has been accredited by the FCT since 2003 and currently has 131 researchers from various educational institutions, national and foreign, and representing different areas of knowledge. It received the classification of "Very Good" in the FCT - Foundation for Science and Technology contest - held in 2017, whose results were known in June 2019.

In promoting research, UNIDCOM has invested in supporting the training of new researchers, integrating doctoral students in its research groups, as well as getting involved in numerous activities of dissemination and transmission of knowledge, such as workshops, conferences, short courses, and publications of books and journals, many of them in collaboration with other national and international institutions and research centers.

UNIDCOM's mission is to study Design, as a systems integrator, and Communication.


This mission is accomplished through:

  • Research: carrying out innovative research in design and communication;
  • Postgraduate studies: articulation with IADE's postgraduate study cycles;
  • R&D+i activities: namely the transfer of knowledge to society through projects in consortia.

Scientific independence, Equity, Diversity, Relevance and Recognition are the keywords that drive UNIDCOM's activities.


Scientific Independence

UNIDCOM is committed to offering its researchers the conditions for them to develop their research freely, independently of economic, political, social, religious interest groups or other scientific stakeholders. In particular, it seeks to support and encourage the independence of young researchers at the beginning of their careers.


Equity is a core value for UNIDCOM which seeks, with objectivity, rationality and impartiality in its practices, to guarantee equity in research. Consultation with an External Advisory Committee is of particular importance to this end. UNIDCOM prides itself on being an inclusive organization that prohibits discriminatory practices based on gender, ethnicity, color, creed, socioeconomic conditions or sexual orientation.


UNIDCOM defends a scientific culture that promotes disciplinary, theoretical and methodological diversity. The team includes researchers from different disciplinary areas – Design, Architecture, Engineering, Psychology, History, Anthropology, Sociology, Philosophy, among others, integrated in the four GI.


Having a very comprehensive research agenda, UNIDCOM pays special attention to the social relevance of the research carried out, seeking to play a positive role in society, consistent with humanist principles.


UNIDCOM aims to achieve national and international recognition, and is therefore strongly committed to establishing criteria and procedures for action and evaluation that will allow it to achieve the desired notoriety. In this context, UNIDCOM also seeks to strengthen collaboration with other units, laboratories and research centers.


UNIDCOM/IADE has laboratories and support centers for the management of knowledge, technology, innovation and creativity, and its laboratory intensity can be considered medium.


UNIDCOM/IADE has the following collegiate bodies, autonomous from IADE-U, which are governed by the Code of Administrative Procedure:

  • Governing Board
  • Executive Coordination Council
  • Scientific Council
  • External Monitoring Commission
  • Research Groups


To learn more about UNIDCOM/IADE see: