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European University Institute - Department of Political and Social Sciences

Alumna Helena Carreiras appointed Portugal’s first female Minister of Defence

SPS Alumna Helena Carreiras has taken office as Portugal’s Minister of National Defence in Prime Minister António Costa’s newly formed government, becoming the first woman to ever hold the position.

05 April 2022

Minister Helena Carreiras obtained her PhD in Political and Social Sciences from the EUI in 2004, with the thesis Gender and the military: a comparative study of the partecipation of women in the Armed Forces of western democracies, on the subject of the gender integration policies of the armed forces of NATO countries. Her research was published as a book with Routledge, in 2006.

At the time of her appointment as Portugal's first female Defence Minister she was Director of the National Defence Institute, as well as associate Professor of Sociology, Public Policy and Research Methodology at ISCTE - Lisbon University Institute, and senior researcher at the Centre for Research and Studies in Sociology (CIES- IUL).

Throughout her career as an academic, Carreiras’ research has focused on topics related to gender and society, the armed forces, security and defence, and qualitative research methodology. She is the author of various books, articles and chapter contributions on the subject of gender integration in military institutions and gender aspects of international security.

Photo credit: Government of Portugal

Last update: 05 April 2022

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