Research Centre on Law and Society
Welcome to the website of CEDIS - Research & Development Centre on Law and Society.


Established following the inception of the NOVA School of Law in 1996, CEDIS emerged in 2003 with a clear aim: to challenge dogmatic paradigms in legal scholarship and education within Portugal. Its name (Research & Development Centre on Law and Society) reflected our alignment with the Law and Society movement, emphasizing a socio-legal orientation towards legal research, education and outreach, distinct from doctrinal concerns.

CEDIS embarked on a mission to integrate legal discourse with broader societal contexts, serving as a catalyst for transformative change across various social dimensions. This comprehensive vision manifested in CEDIS’s tripartite mission, outlined as follows: to reconceptualise legal science through a strong interdisciplinarity; to redefine legal pedagogy by combining teaching with research, and by adopting a student-centred pedagogical approach; to effectuate societal change by engaging directly with external stakeholders and communities.

Throughout its evolution, CEDIS has experienced significant expansion, with its scholarly contributions setting commendable benchmarks across various scientific domains. The impact of CEDIS’s activities extends beyond law, catalysing transformative shifts in diverse spheres including social, cultural, economic, legal, political, environmental, technological, and digital domains. The institutional identity of CEDIS has evolved through synergistic engagements with diverse socio-legal research paradigms, aligning its objectives with broader imperatives. Currently, CEDIS’s scholarly pursuits resonate with the European Agenda for Knowledge and Innovation, reflecting Europe’s commitment to progressive knowledge dissemination. Additionally, its endeavours align with the goals of the 2030 United Nations Agenda for Sustainable Development (SDGs), highlighting its dedication to fostering a sustainable and egalitarian global community. This alignment underscores CEDIS’s pivotal role in advancing legal scholarship, education, and outreach while shaping an inclusive and sustainable future grounded in a nuanced understanding of the interplay between law and society.


Today, CEDIS embodies a rejuvenated ensemble characterized by diversity, inclusivity, interdisciplinarity, and international perspectives, all converging with its tripartite mission components:

  • CEDIS RESEARCH: scholars are dedicated to forging innovative theoretical frameworks that transcend conventional legal paradigms, embracing problems, approaches and methodologies from other social sciences. The outcomes of this pioneering scholarship are published in esteemed, globally indexed scholarly journals. Beyond scholarly contributions, the team advocates for novel legislative frameworks, public policies, institutional architectures, and conflict resolution methods, effectuating tangible impacts domestically and internationally.
  • CEDIS EDUCATION: budding scholars are seamlessly integrated into CEDIS’s scholarly pursuits, engaging in both research endeavours and outreach initiatives. Young scholars play integral roles in CEDIS Knowledge Centres and Projects, gaining invaluable experiential learning opportunities and contributing meaningfully to academic discourse.
  • CEDIS OUTREACH: CEDIS actively engages with diverse stakeholders, including policymakers, governmental agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), the private sector, and other civil society actors, ensuring that our knowledge is accessible, relevant, and beneficial to a wider audience beyond academia.

Thematic Lines

At CEDIS, each scholar embodies the triad of mission components, aligning their scholarly endeavours with one of three thematic lines:


CEDIS Funding

Click here to learn how CEDIS is funded

Main Funding Institution: FCT

CEDIS is funded mostly by FCT, I.P. (Foundation for Science and Technology, Public Institute) with national funds from the Portuguese Ministry of Science, Technology and Higher Education, under projects UIDB/00714/2020 and UIDP/00714/2020. Click here to learn more about FCT.

Host Institution: NOVA School of Law

Click here to find out more about our host institution, the NOVA School of Law, the Faculty of Law of the Universidade Nova de Lisboa.

The Board is composed of the Director, who presides, and two members, appointed for a period of four years.

The Scientific Council is composed of the Director of CEDIS, who chairs it, and all permanent members holding a PhD.

The Scientific Advisory Board is composed by the Director; the Faculty Dean; the President of the Scientific Council, two members of CEDIS and experts in the fields of CEDIS activity.

Regulation n.º 3/2023, Centro de Investigação & Desenvolvimento sobre Direito e Sociedade (CEDIS). Published in Diário da República n.º 02/2023, Série II on 03 January 2023.

Archiving and publication of minutes in accordance with the principle of open administration and in order to ensure the transparency of decisions related to research.

The Activities Reports present the progress of research at CEDIS by describing the work carried out and the results obtained.

Relevant legislation for institutions and people engaged in scientific research.

Research at CEDIS is funded by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT), by European institutions with responsibility in the area of scientific research and development, and by other relevant institutions in the area of Law and Society.

The Research Support Office is responsible for providing secretarial services to the Board and support to CEDIS members throughout their research.

Develop the Science of Law.
Fostering productivity, scientific merit and innovation in research.