Who we are

The SPAC lab team is a multidisciplinary research group that takes advantage of the Digital Revolution and works together to understand how individual behaviour impacts on society. Our current groups members have backgrounds in areas as diverse as Biology, Computer Science, Economics, Law, Mathematics, Physics or Psychology. We are an equal opportunity employer and strive to promote diversity in science.

Current Members

GROUP LEADER

Joana Gonçalves de Sá

MSC STUDENT

David Almeida

DATA SCIENTIST

Paulo Almeida

Simone Lackner foto
POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER

Simone Lackner

MSC STUDENT

João Loureiro

Picture of Cristina Mendonça
POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER

Cristina Mendonça

PHD STUDENT

Sara Mesquita

Lilia Perfeito photo
POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER

Lília Perfeito

MSC STUDENT

José Reis

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER

Eleonora Tulumello

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER

Irma Varela-Lasheras

GROUP LEADER

Joana Gonçalves de Sá

Joana Gonçalves de Sá is the principal investigator of the Social Physics and Complexity (SPAC) research group at LIP and an Invited Associate Professor at the Physics Department of Instituto Superior Técnico. Her current research uses experimental and computational methods (big data and complex systems) to study decision-making, mainly in policy and health.

MSC STUDENT

David Almeida

David Almeida is pursuing a master’s degree in Data Science from Universidade de Lisboa.

He is currently working on the project for his thesis focusing on the impact of crisis on public trust in science.

DATA SCIENTIST

Paulo Almeida

Paulo Almeida is a data scientist. Previously he worked in Bioinformatics at Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência, in projects ranging from large scale sequencing to genome wide association studies, with a strong component of data management and analysis.

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER

Simone Lackner

Simone Lackner is a post-doctoral research fellow at the Nova School of Business and Economics.

Her current research focuses on developing new methods to understand public attitudes towards science and the role that cognitive biases play in opinion formation and Fake News sharing.

MSC STUDENT

João Loureiro

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER

Cristina Mendonça

Cristina Mendonça is a post-doctoral research fellow at LIP – Laboratório de Instrumentação e Física Experimental de Partículas. She has done most of her research in judgment and decision-making, with a focus in motivational and cognitive biases and communication. She received her PhD in Social Psychology from the inter-university doctoral program LiSP – Lisbon PhD in Social Psychology.

PHD STUDENT

Sara Mesquita

Sara Mesquita is a biochemist with a master in bioengineering and post-graduation in bioinformatics that replaced the lab bench for data analysis.

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER

Lília Perfeito

Lília Perfeito is a researcher at the Nova School of Business and Economics. She spent the past 15 years studying how organisms evolve and adapt to new environments with the goal of predicting that evolution. Lilia completed her PhD in Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência (IGC), followed by a post-doc in the University of Cologne, Germany.

MSC STUDENT

José Reis

José is a legal researcher at the Social Physics and Complexity Group and is currently pursuing a PhD in Law at the University of Hamburg.

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER

Eleonora Tulumello

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER

Irma Varela-Lasheras

External Members

RESEARCH FELLOW

Sofia Pinto

MSC STUDENT

Afonso Marques

RESEARCH FELLOW

Pedro Rio

VISITING MEMBER

Frederico Francisco

RESEARCH FELLOW

Sofia Pinto

Sofia Pinto is an aspiring Data Scientist currently working in a project aiming to identify and reduce misprescription of antibiotics in Portugal.

MSC STUDENT

Afonso Marques

Bachelor in Economics at Nova School of Business and Economics, currently writing his thesis within the Masters in Analysis and Engineering of Big Data program at Nova FCT.

RESEARCH FELLOW

Pedro Rio

VISITING MEMBER

Frederico Francisco

Frederico Francisco is currently a post-doc fellow and Invited Assistant Professor at Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade do Porto (FCUP). He was previously a post-doc fellow at the Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência and continues to work with the Social Physics & Complexity as a Visiting Member, conducting research on public attitudes towards science and electoral dynamics.

Collaborators

We collaborate with colleagues from many different institutions and research areas. We work or have worked directly with:

  • André Mata, CICPSI, Lisbon University, Portugal
  • Bruno Martins, IST and INESC-ID, Portugal
  • Carlota Louro, Nova Medical School, Portugal
  • Cláudia Soares, IST-ID and FCT Nova, Portugal
  • Johan Bollen, Indiana University, USA
  • José Tavares, Nova SBE, Portugal
  • Luis Rocha, Indiana University, USA
  • Manuel Arriaga, NYU, USA
  • Manuel Marques-Pita, CICANT, Lusófona University, Portugal
  • Maria Eduarda Gonçalves, ISCTE, Portugal
  • Sofia Serra da Silva, ICS, Portugal
  • Susana Peralta, Nova SBE, Portugal
  • Ministério da Saúde, Portugal
  • Serviços Partilhados do Ministério da Saúde (SPMS), Portugal

Past Members

  • Post-doc Alex Davidson, left for a position in a cryptography research lab associated with the Brave web browser
  • Post-doc Miguel Won, left for a post-doc at INESC-ID, Portugal
  • Post-doc Manuel Marques-Pita, left for a faculty position at Universidade Lusófona, Portugal
  • Post-doc Tiago Simas, left for a position as researcher at Telefónica, Spain
  • Fellow Pedro Varela, left for a PhD at IST, Portugal
  • Summer student João Nolasco Santos, left for a PhD
  • Summer student Michael West, left for an undergraduate degree at Imperial College
  • Summer student, Silvia Gerola, left for a job in Italy

Would you like to be part of our team?