about us

Serrapilheira is a private nonprofit institution which promotes science in Brazil. Its main objective is to finance high quality research with a focus on knowledge production and science outreach initiatives. We want to contribute to the construction of a culture of science in the country.

what do we do?

We allocate resources to support scientific research and science outreach. an endowment fund of U$ 110 million was set up in 2016.

“We want to identify and support the best young researchers in Brazil, those who are posing the big questions in their fields. We do not have any qualms about supporting risky research proposals, the sort where an audacious researcher may not always be successful.”

— Hugo Aguilaniu, Director-President

which fields do we support?

  • natural sciences
  • computer science
  • mathematics


Encourage excellence in research in Brazil through:

  • Public Calls
  • Training young scientists for cutting-edge research
  • Encouraging exchanges with other countries

Stimulate scientific knowledge in Brazil to:

  • Raise young people’s interest in science
  • Contribute to the construction of a culture of science in the country

Promote transparency of both the institute’s actions and the relationship with supported researchers

Encourage ethnic and gender diversity in science in Brazil


Our structure comprises the Executive Team under the supervision of the Board of Directors, both advised by the Scientific Advisory Board.

meet our team

where did we come from?

While it was launched in March 2017, the seeds for Serrapilheira were planted in 2014. During the three years between inception and unveiling, we dedicated ourselves to studying institutional models and visiting research councils, science foundations, and third sector organizations in Brazil and abroad. We also spoke with Brazilian researchers to understand how a private institution might best meet the needs of the scientific community.