LMU's Brasiliera Abroad
by Elizabeth Willoughby

She came to Germany for an internship and stayed for a degree, doctorate and postdoc. Now, Dr. Leticia Fröhlich Archangelo is LMU's newest representative, stationed in São Paulo, Brazil. On board since the end of 2012, she couldn't be in a better place to achieve the goals set out.  

Dr. Archangelo is a researcher at the Laboratory of Molecular and Cell Biology at the Hematology and Hemotherapy Center at the state university in Campinas, São Paulo, one of the best universities in Latin America. In February she came to Munich to participate in a scientific congress and to discuss with the LMU International Office further developing LMU's relations with Brazil.

The third LMU representative abroad, Dr. Archangelo will play an important role in developing connections between LMU and Brazilian universities, making research and study opportunities at LMU known to Brazilians, assisting in the building up of research associations and eventually setting up exchange programs.

Finding partners at home

Research and innovation in Brazil is intense and dynamic in the business sector as well as within its network of universities, research institutions and between the São Paulo and Bavaria state governments. Dr. Archangelo says she will actively pursue certain programs, such as Science Without Borders (CSF), in which the Brazilian government is highly invested. CSF seeks to promote, expand and consolidate science, technology and innovation internationally through sponsoring internships abroad and by attracting researchers from abroad. Dr. Archangelo aims to become a channel between CSF and LMU.

An LMU alumna, she has an intimate knowledge of the university. During her ten years in Germany, Dr. Archangelo did her internship, a second diploma and gene research in Göttingen, as well as her PhD and postdoc in Munich. She will draw on her experiences working in laboratories in Brazil and in Germany that have provided her with inside expertise in the science sector of both countries and a long-established network of contacts in both academic communities. She is keenly aware of the challenges in forming international peer-to-peer relationships and cooperations.

The science is also about bridges

"The borders of the scientific community are not the same as international borders," says Dr. Archangelo. "Research is often based on collaborative work and international cooperation. My experience as a scientist will be of great importance to help envision the possibilities and create projects of interest for the LMU International Office.

"During my research I've already had a project approved by the German DFG and the Brazilian FAPESP foundation to promote international collaboration between my former German and current Brazilian laboratories. I have a good network in both countries, which will help me build bridges between LMU and Brazilian universities, especially in the biology and medical departments."

It is no coincidence, therefore, that her first project is to arrange cooperative programs between these biology and medical faculties. Dr. Archangelo's initial focus will be on Unicamp, where she does her research, and USP in São Paulo city, another of the best universities on the continent. She's looking forward to her involvement in these activities outside of her laboratory, and to facilitate opening doors for LMU activities through Brazil to all of Latin America.

"I've always dreamed of having contact with people from different cultures as well as living and working in different countries," she says. "Working as an LMU representative will allow me to move in a direction in which I can help to pave the way of mobility for the next generation of scientists. I am very thrilled about helping students and research this way. It keeps me with one foot in each country."

Originally published at insightLMU, March 2013

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