UQ and Brazil

Strategic allies

UQ is developing a strong presence in Brazil at the turning point of the country's rapid growth and expansion into the global economy. Through deepening engagement with selected partners – including mining giant Vale and the São Paulo State University (UNESP) – research collaboration is addressing the key challenges of our time, and working towards a safer, healthier, and more sustainable future.

Fast facts


Brazilian students enrolled at UQ


Brazil-UQ co-publications


academic staff born in Brazil


research project collaborations


alumni in Brazil


agreements with 13 official partners



Brazil and UQ have partnered on more than 400 co-publications in the past 5 years, with key research areas including genetics and heredity, public health, and environmental sciences. UQ's top co-publishing partners for this period are the University of São Paulo, Federal University of Minas Gerais, and São Paulo State University, and the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul.

Research collaborations

Since 2012, UQ has collaborated with 5 Brazilian institutions on 7 UQ research projects, worth more than AUD 1.9 million (BRL 4.6 million). Our top collaborators are Vale, the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, and São Paulo State University, with research covering a range of topics from mining remediation and ecosystem restoration to mathematics.

Research funding

UQ has received more than AUD 800,000 (BRL 2 million) for 4 research projects from 3 Brazilian organisations in the past 5 years. Three active projects are being funded by Vale and the Arthur Bernardes Foundation (FUNARBE). 

Collaboration in action

Building a hub of geomicrobiological knowledge

UQ’s School of Earth and Environmental Sciences has signed an AUD 2.5 million (BRL 6.3 million) industry alliance with mining leader Vale to design and deliver world-class coal geosciences and geomicrobiology research, as well as education and training programs. The funding has seen two Vale-UQ Coal Geosciences and Geomicrobiology Laboratories established at UQ, where students are recording advances in coal basin analysis, mine safety, palaeo environmental reconstruction, and microbiology. Research at the Vale-UQ Coal Geosciences Program is focused on the interplay of basin evolution, sedimentary environments, palaeo-climate and botanical evolution, and the impact of these geological factors on the mining sector.

Tailored parenting support for Brazilian families

UQ's Parenting and Family Support Centre is working to improve the wellbeing of children in Brazil by helping parents prevent emotional and behavioural problems occurring. Although parenting programs are widely held as a successful strategy for improving child welfare, there are no evidence-based strategies available to Brazilian families in a socially or economically relevant local context. In response, PhD candidate Mariajose Schulz is collaborating with Brazilian family service providers to gauge the efficacy and cultural acceptability of the Group Triple P – Positive Parenting Program. The project is being conducted in partnership with the Itajai Department of Education. Pictured: Ms Schulz (standing) with a Brazilian trial group at UQ.

Brazil and QLD to reap benefits from AgCollab

Researchers from UQ's Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation, School of Agriculture and Food Sciences, School of Veterinary Science, and School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences travelled to Brazil in late 2016 to take part in a series of technical workshops designed to bolster collaboration in agricultural genomics, animal nutrition, agronomy, and biosecurity. The initiative is paving the way for several major collaborative projects with São Paulo State University, as well as Research Higher Degree student mobility, and expanded datasets. The UQ Global Strategy and Partnerships Seed Funding Scheme has supported the collaboration with AUD 10,000 funding (BRL 25,207).

English for the classroom

UQ's Institute of Continuing & TESOL Education (ICTE-UQ) is helping Brazilian teachers deliver academic courses in English. The Content & Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) programs an internationally recognised approach to teaching a language and a subject simultaneously – were delivered at the University of Brasilia and the Federal University of Viçosa, with the latter funded by former US President Obama's 100,000 Strong in the Americas program. ICTE-UQ is currently in discussions with the São Paulo State University, the Federal University of Grande Dourados, and the Federal University of Piaui to deliver similar English training programs. The Institute has assisted more than 19 international university and government partners teach academic content in English.

English courses | Cursos de Língua Inglesa

Brazilian students at UQ

Around 800 Brazilian students have enrolled in UQ degrees in the past 5 years. Study Abroad and PhD studies are the most popular program choices. Brazilians can apply for the Latin America Global Leaders Scholarship and School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences Latin American Scholarship, as well as scholarships offered by government agencies CAPES and CNPq.

The UQ Latin American Student Association is just one of the clubs and societies on campus that provide a platform for sharing cultures and welcoming Brazilian students to UQ. People with an interest in Brazilian culture can also take Portuguese classes at the UQ Institute of Modern Languages.

Video: Rubens Copia Sperandio, from Brazil, was enrolled in UQ's Study Abroad program studying Biomedical Science. He was chosen as a Brisbane International Student Ambassador in 2013.

Student mobility

Student exchange and study abroad

UQ has a student exchange agreement with Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro. Under this agreement, 5 UQ students studied in Brazil and 11 Brazilian students studied at UQ in the past 5 years, as a way to combine study and travel, to discover a new culture, and to widen their network of friends. In addition, more than 650 Brazilian students studied at UQ under the Science without Borders program, which was active from 2011-2015.

Wildlife rescue and rehabilitation

In 2016, 10 UQ veterinary science students travelled to Porto Alegre, where they teamed up with the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul and worked in a local volunteer wildlife rescue and rehabilitation clinic. The students applied their clinical and surgical skills in a range of settings, from emergency care to rehabilitation. Crucially, they participated in animal desexing surgery to help control stray populations. The project has enhanced research links between our institutions and has been funded into 2017 by the Australian Government's Endeavour Mobility Grants program.


More than 720 alumni live in Brazil. Alumni from or living in Brazil include:


Emiliano Valente Reyes
CEO of FLIN, Executive Director of Metro Network, and Founder and CEO of VREYES Telecommunications (Master of Business Economics 2011)

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Fast facts based on 2016 full year data.