LARSyS develops interdisciplinary research in Robotics and Engineering Systems, bringing together four R&D units, involving the University of Lisbon (through IST-Instituto Superior Técnico) and the University of Madeira:
  1. Institute for Systems and Robotics of IST (ISR -IST);
  2. Centre for Innovation, Technology and Policy Research of IST (IN+/IST);
  3. Marine Environment & Technology Centre of IST (MARETEC/IST)
  4. Madeira Interactive Technologies Institute at the University of Madeira (MITI).
Through this association, which emerged naturally from previous consortia, LARSyS seeks for enhanced capacity to foster research at new frontiers of knowledge at the best international level. It considers researchers from different backgrounds and perspectives acquired in different areas of science (e.g., experimental, computational, and theoretical) and different sectors (university, industry, governmental, and regional administration).

LARSyS operates through its four research centers, which provide specific areas of expertise in their main domains of knowledge. They involve ten Laboratories and/or Groups, affiliating researchers in a way suitable to conduct specialized work in their main fields of expertise and to provide the necessary knowledge and experience to foster LARSyS´s scientific program, as follows:
  1. Dynamic Systems and Ocean Robotics group (DSORg - ISR/IST);
  2. Evolutionary Systems and Biomedical Engineering group (LaSEEB - ISR/IST);
  3. Intelligent Robots and Systems group (IRSg - ISR/IST);
  4. Signal and Image Processing group (SIPg - ISR/IST);
  5. Computer and Robot Vision group (VisLab - ISR/IST);
  6. Laboratory of Thermofluids, Combustion and Energy Systems (LTCES - IN+/IST);
  7. Laboratory of Industrial Ecology and Sustainability (LIES - IN+/IST);
  8. Laboratory of Technology Policy and Management (LTPM – IN+/IST);
  9. MITI - Madeira Interactive Technologies Institute;
  10. MARETEC - Marine Environmental Technology Center.
DSORg @ISR aims: i) to study challenging theoretical problems in the areas of advanced marine robotic vehicle systems design, navigation, and control and ii) to exploit the theoretical methodologies developed to yield efficient systems and tools for ocean exploration and exploitation.

LaSEEB @ISR is dedicated to research and development in Biomedical Systems and Engineering, with emphasis on the study of human brain function, with applications in sleep and cognition, and more recently in pathologies such as epilepsy, dementia and cerebrovascular disease.

IRSg @ISR research approaches complex systems from a holistic standpoint, rather than focusing on some of the subsystems. The topic of cooperation is currently the group major research topic.

SIP Group @ISR conducts research related to information processing from sensory data: Sensor and Information Networks, Ocean Acoustics, Image and Video Analysis and Biomedical Engineering

VisLab group @ISR conducts research on computer and robot vision, focusing on video analysis, surveillance, learning, humanoid robotics and cognition.

LTCES @IN+ the research has a background on experimental and mathematical/physical modeling of thermal-fluid-dynamics and combustion systems making use of advanced techniques for flow measurements focused in understanding the fundamental relationship between concurrent thermodynamic transports phenomena involved in energy conversion processes.

LTPM @IN+ aims to foster policy analysis of emerging issues in science, technology and industry with emphasis on in-depth policy formulation and the need to secure the sustainable development of our societies.

LIES @IN+ includes a multidisciplinary group dedicated to develop models that can be used to support decision making in a set of diversified but correlated areas ranging from the urban to the national or international scales.

M-ITI operates in the interdisciplinary domain of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI), with the goal of engaging in important scientific and technological challenges (eg. aging population, sustainability in smart cities and digital culture).

MARETEC research is focused on marine energies, environment and on environmental economy and economy of the energy.

The research agendas of the various Laboratories and/or groups is complemented and extended through “Thematic Areas” (see section 6.3). The scientific program and managing structure of LARSyS was designed to guarantee a clear leadership aware of the most relevant international scientific trends and of the economic and social importance of science and technology. Sample examples of our international partnerships include:
  • MIT-Portugal Program, through its overall coordination and an active involvement of researchers in the areas of Sustainable Energy Systems (SES) and Engineering Design and Advanced Manufacturing (EDAM);
  • Carnegie Mellon Portugal Program, through an active involvement of researchers in the areas of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE), Computer Science (CS), Human Computer Interaction (HCI) and Engineering and Public Policy (EPP);
  • IST–EPFL Program, through its overall coordination and an active involvement of researchers in the areas of Distributed and Cognitive Robotics and Biomedical Engineering;
  • IRGC, International Risk Governance Council, through the coordination of IRGC-Portugal, which involves five Associate Laboratories in Portugal.
The managing structure of LARSyS considers three complementing approaches aiming to guarantee the execution of a research program at the leading edge of knowledge: i) bottom-up; ii) middle-out; and iii) top-down.

The bottom-up nature of LARSyS is promoted through its Scientific Council, which includes all doctorate researchers. It examines and approves the annual plans and reports, and to define the Governance structure of LARSyS. It meets twice a year.

The middle-out managing structure of LARSyS is promoted through each of the ten Research Groups/Laboratories and the six Thematic Areas. Each of the ten groups has a Principal Investigator (PI), and each of the Thematic Areas has a PI and a Management Committee.

The necessary top-down management of LARSyS is used for overall coordination. It lies on a coordinating Board of Directors with the responsibility of supervising and guiding the activities of the four participating R&D units. This Board is composed by the directors of the four R&D units involved and by the PIs of the Thematic Areas. The President of the Board of LARSyS coordinates the Board of Directors and is elected among its members. A small Executive Board, including the directors of the four R&D units involved, supports the President for the daily management of the activities resulting from the collaboration among the participant units and to guarantee its accurate fulfillment.

The activities of LARSyS are followed yearly by an External Advisory and Review Board, consisting of national and international experts, as established by the Scientific Council.
with the support of: