Marisa Matias

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Marisa Matias

Marisa Matias, SomosBibliotecas (cropped).png
Member of the European Parliament
Assumed office
14 July 2009
Personal details
Marisa Isabel dos Santos Matias

(1976-02-20) 20 February 1976 (age 43)
Coimbra, Portugal
Political party Portuguese:
Left Bloc
Other political
Party of the European Left
Alma materUniversity of Coimbra
WebsiteEuropean Parliament

Marisa Isabel dos Santos Matias (Coimbra, 20 February 1976) is a Portuguese sociologist and Member of the European Parliament, elected first time in 2009, being re-elected in 2014. She currently integrates the Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) and Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE) Committees. She is also Chairwoman of the Delegation of the European Parliament for relations with the Mashreq countries (Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria).[1] Between 2010 and 2016 she was Vice-President of the Party of the European Left.

In November 2015 she announced her candidacy to the 2016 Portuguese presidential elections, supported by her political party, Left Bloc. She came out third, with 10,12% of the votes, conquering the best result ever of any women in presidential elections in Portugal.[2]


Marisa Matias studies Sociology at the University of Coimbra with the doctorate thesis: “Is nature sick of us? Health, environment and emerging forms of citizenship.” (2009); MA in sociology in the field of social studies related to science and technology, Coimbra University, Portugal (2003); graduate in sociology, Coimbra University, Portugal (1998). Her areas of specialisation include environmental health, sociology of science, political sociology, democracy and participation. She has published several scientific articles, chapters in books and other publications, national and international, on the relations between environment and public health, science and knowledge, democracy and citizenship. Collaborated as a training/teacher in various training courses and postgraduate programs (including master and phd programs). Conducted scientific research in the areas of environmental health, sociology of science, sociology of health and political sociology. Research member of the Centre for Social Studies[1] of University of Coimbra (since 2004); research assistant of the Centre for Social Studies of University of Coimbra, Portugal (2000–2004); teacher of Sociology and other disciplines in ITAP and Profitecla schools (2000–2001); secretary of newsroom of the Scientific Magazine of Social Sciences (1998–2000).

Civic and political activity[edit]

Member of Left Bloc National Board and Executive Board; member of board of Pro-Urbe, a civic association in Coimbra. She was national trustee of the movement "Cidadania e Responsabilidade pelo Sim", during the campaign for decriminalization of abortion in Portugal. Activist in the movement against co-incineration in Souselas (pt) and head of the Left Bloc list in the elections for Coimbra Municipality (2005).

Member of the European Parliament[edit]

2009 – 2014[edit]

In 2009 she was elected Member of the European Parliament (MEP) being part of the political group GUE/NGL. She was member of the Industry, Research and Energy Committee and Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee. Also member of the delegation to the relations with the Mashriq Countries, with the Legislative Council of Palestine and with South Africa.

At the beginning of mandate was nominated the Parliament’s rapporteur to write and negotiate the directive preventing the entrance of false medicines into legal distribution. A business that generates more than €400 billion per year for the counterfeiting networks and puts at risk the life of patients. The proposed directive, and negotiated for almost two years, with the parliamentary groups and the governments, would be approved in 2011. Marisa Matias was the second time since Portugal’s entrance at the EU a Portuguese MEP, which led the process of a framework-directive, a law that will be transposed to the judicial system of each of the 28 member States until 2016.

At the same time, she was also rapporteur of the European strategy in the fight against Alzheimer and other dementias, that would equally be approved in 2011. She was part, and co-president, of the European Work Group for Diabetes, being co-author of the first resolution to ever be approved in the European Parliament aiming at the definition of a political strategy to fight the diabetes epidemic (2010). Was also involved in the planning and approval of proposals of resolution on cancer, HIV, and was active member of the parliamentary committee inquiry on the case of H1N1 vaccine. In 2011 was elected by its pairs, with more than 350 votes, was MEP of the Year for health, being the single MEP from the United Left Parliamentary Group to receive this price since its creation.

In the years 2011 and 2012 was the Parliament’s rapporteur for the definition of a Common Strategic Framework for Research and Innovation. The report was approved in 2012 and established the bases for what should be the proposal for the Horizon 2020 programme on the European financing of research and innovation for the period 2014–2020. Besides the proposal to reinforce the funds and of a better geographical distribution of the funds, the approved proposal also included a significant increase of support to the scientific work and to the attribution of scholarships within the European financing framework. Later, would also be part of the team of six rapporteurs, nominated by the European Parliament, to the definition and negotiation of the proposal about the Horizon 2020, being responsible for one of the legislative regulations on the Strategic Agenda for Innovation. The legislative package would end up being approved at the end of 2013, being already active since January 2014.

In 2012 she was still nominated rapporteur of the European Parliament for the evaluation of the European Central Bank (ECB) activities of 2011, the year the ECB presidency changed. In a very disputed process and hard negotiations, her report would be approved by one vote of difference in the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee. Later, the report would be approved, in plenary, still in 2013, but Marisa Matias requested her name to be withdraw as a result of approved changes in the final vote. Those changed took out of the report all the critical references to the ECB as member of the European Troika, equally eliminating the proposal to oblige the ECB to restore to the countries under the Troika’s intervention the profits resulting from the complex processes of buying and selling of public debt titles.

Marisa Matias was, still, the Parliament’s rapporteur for four opinion on European strategy for adapting to climate change, resettling of GDP calculation, proposal for a new pluri-annual financing framework and regulation defining indexes on the goods traded in stock market.

As shadow rapporteur, meaning, MEP responsible within its parliamentary group, to follow and negotiate proposals led by other colleagues from other parliamentary groups, Marisa Matias followed, during the mandate, the making of 25 parliamentary proposals, having presented proposals for change and being present in negotiation meetings. So far, was also co-author of 119 proposals of parliamentary resolutions.

While Vice-President of the Parliament to the relations with the Mashreq countries (Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Egypt) was part and presided to several parliamentary negotiations with these countries, coordinating processes of negotiation with the correspondent national parliaments. This was also done during the period known for the transformations introduced by the Arab Spring. Marisa is also member of the Parliament’s Delegation to the relations with the Palestinian Legislative Council, having developed initiatives mainly concerning the siege of the Gaza Strip.

2016 Portuguese presidential candidacy[edit]

On 18 October 2015, Catarina Martins, co-ordinator of the Left Bloc, announced that, as no credible unifying leftist candidate had thus far come forward for the Presidential elections of January 2016, Marisa Matias allowed her name to be put forward as representing her party in those elections. She finished 3rd, with 10,12% of the votes, the best result ever of any women in presidential elections in Portugal.


  1. ^ a b "Marisa MATIAS | Home | MEPs | European Parliament". Retrieved 2017-01-24.
  2. ^ "Marisa Matias é a mulher mais votada de sempre em presidenciais" (in Portuguese).

External links[edit]