IDL - Instituto Amaro da Costa
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IDL Instituto Amaro da Costa was constituted by public decree in the 10th Notary Public of Lisbon, on October 6th, 1975, having granted as founders Mr. Adelino Amaro da Costa, Mr. Basílio Horta, Mr. Emídio Pinheiro, Mr. Eugénio Anacoreta Correia, Mr. José Manuel Macedo Pereira, Mr. Pedro Pestana de Vasconcelos and Mr. Victor Sá Machado.

Originally its social denomination was 'INSTITUTO DEMOCRACIA E LIBERDADE'. After Adelino Amaro da Costa's death, as a tribute to the founder, it was altered by public decree in the 10th Notary Public of Lisbon, on April 2nd, 1981, to its current designation "IDL - INSTITUTO AMARO DA COSTA"

IDL's object is the research of cultural, social and political phenomena, crucial to the free exercise of democracy in Portugal, in particular regarding Christian democracy, as well as providing an educational program to promote democracy and freedom within the many human activity sectors.

IDL is the oldest Portuguese institution for political education, having promoted in 1975 and 1976 several seminars and conferences with nearly eight hundred participants.  But it wasn't until 1977 that its action evolved and was systematized; between 1977 and 1992 a total of 924 initiatives took place, with special relevance given to the ones related to municipalities.

The quick development of IDL's activities led to a decentralization of its organization and several inaugurations took place in the following years: in 1976 the Oporto Delegation, to work with the northern districts of the country, followed by the Lisbon Delegation in 1979, to work with the central and southern regions, and in 1980 the Funchal Delegation, which covered the Autonomous Region of Madeira. Each delegation was to promote political education, leaving editorial and investigation activities to the IDL Central Services.

In addition to the educational program, IDL played a very important part in promoting free unionist movements, family defence, and associations representing personalist teachers and authors. It also developed educational programs for high school and university student associations; youth organizations; commercial, industrial and agricultural associations; parental and women associations, and so on. Many of these programs focused on the subject of Portugal joining the EEC in order to clarify the public opinion on a matter of such high national interest.

During his founder's lifetime IDL established, within the scope of its activity, a special relationship of cooperation with the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, followed by equivalent relationships of cooperation with similar institutions in France, Italy, United Kingdom, Austria and Spain.

Concerning editorial activity, IDL has played a very important role, counting on the collaboration of relevant Portuguese personalities such as the President of the Republic, Ministers and other important members of different Portuguese governments and democratic parties, as well as people from academic and cultural strands.

Due to the variety and high quality of its publications, amongst which "Democracia e Liberdade" magazine, "Coleção de Textos de Apoio" and "Coleção de Estudos e Ensaios", IDL has become a reference in quality, openness and dialogue in the national political scenario. IDL has been mentioned several times by the Portuguese press and also in political investigation papers and university theses.

Among the several subjects divulged by IDL we can mention Human Rights, Portugal and Europe, Family, Public Administration, Regional Development, and Constitutional Revision.

IDL has sponsored investigation projects, assigned to qualified personalities on a wide range of themes, such as Pedagogical Skills in Political Education, Cultural and Personalist Intervention in Modern Society, Political and Social Analysis of Azores and Madeira Islands, Economy and Public Administration.

Special mention should be given to the study on "Portuguese Decolonization" considered the most serious and complete work on this controversial subject. It has been requested by several foreign universities and even today, after thirty years, it is often requested for consultation.

IDL also created a Centre for European Studies which published numerous papers dedicated to the "Joining the EEC" subject, compiled in "Cadernos Europeus".

In what concerns cooperation, IDL created a department "Centro de Acções para a Cooperação e Desenvolvimento (CACD)" targeting the study and debate of cultural, social, economical and political issues related to the relationship between Portugal and countries outside Europe, namely the PALOP (African Countries of Portuguese Official Language.)

As a consequence of this extraordinarily enriching experience, IDL and seven other nonprofit Portuguese Associations with juridical status promoted and subscribed, on March 23rd,1985, the Act of Constitution of Portuguese Nongovernmental Organizations(NGO), at first becoming part of the "Coordinating Committee" and later part of the "Standing Committee".

As an NGO, IDL has developed several projects on cooperation matters, from which special mention is given to: the Built Heritage Inventory of S. Tomé and Príncipe; Cities and Development; EDF and Development Cooperation; Northern Portugal and Cooperation; Management Educational Program in S. Tomé and Principe; International Conference on Agriculture and Desertification; Education for Development in the PALOP (African Countries of Portuguese Official Language).

As recognition for its performance, the Chairman of IDL has been elected as the first Portuguese NGO's coordinator as well as delegate in the Commité de Liaison EEC - NGO in Brussels.
The merit of IDL's activity over the years has been recognized by the Government, and on June 3rd, 1982, public utility status was granted by order of the Prime Minister pursuant to Articles 2 and 3 of Decree-Law n º 460/77 of November 7th.

On May 10th, 2012, IDL was admitted as member of the CES-Centre for European Studies, operating from Brussels as a platform for the national think-tanks sharing the same values of PPE- Partido Popular Europeu (European Popular Party).

Since Adelino Amaro da Costa's death on December 4th, 1980, IDL continues to preserve, develop and promote his important political and social interventions - which are more needed than ever!