- President of the European Commission (2004-2014)
- Prime Minister of Portugal (2002-2004)
- Leader of the Opposition; President of the Social Democratic Party of Portugal (1999-2002)
- Visiting Professor at Georgetown University (1996-1998)
- Head of International Relations Department – Lusíada University, Lisbon (1995-1997)
- Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee – Portuguese Parliament (1995-1996)
- Minister of Foreign Affairs of Portugal (1992-1995)
- State Secretary for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of Portugal (1987-1992)
- State Secretary – Ministry of Home Affairs of Portugal (1985-1987)
José Manuel Durão Barroso was born in Lisbon on 23 March 1956. After graduating in law from the University of Lisbon, he moved to Geneva where he completed a Diploma in European Studies at the European University Institute, University of Geneva, and a Master's degree in Political Science from the Department of Political Science, Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences, University of Geneva, earning honours in both.
He embarked on an academic career, working successively as a teaching assistant at the Law Faculty of the University of Lisbon, in the Department of Political Science, University of Geneva, and as a visiting professor at the Department of Government and School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University (Washington, D.C.). In 1995, he became Head of the International Relations Department of Lusíada University, Lisbon. In 1979, he was one of the founders of AUROP, the Portuguese University Association for European Studies and he later became the first editor of the Revista de Ciência Política.
In 1980 he joined the Social Democratic Party (PSD). He was first elected to the Portuguese parliament in 1985 and was re-elected six times thereafter. In 1999 he was elected President of the PSD and re-elected three times. During the same period, he served as Vice President of the European People's Party. As State Secretary for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation he played a key role as mediator of the peace accords for Angola in Bicesse (Estoril, Portugal) in 1991, and as Minister for Foreign Affairs he launched the talks with the Indonesian Minister of Foreign Affairs, under the auspices of the Secretary General of the United Nations, that ultimately led to the independence of East Timor. Under his leadership, the PSD won the general election in 2002 and he was appointed Prime Minister of Portugal in April of that year. He remained in office until July 2004 when he was nominated by the European Council and elected by the European Parliament to the post of President of the European Commission. In June 2009 the European Council unanimously nominated him for a second term as President of the European Commission, and he was re-elected by an absolute majority in the European Parliament in September 2009.
He has also participated in several international missions including, among others, head of the IDEA delegation to Bosnia and Herzegovina (1996) and advisor to the United Nations in projects for Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Among others, he is the recipient of the following State Decorations:
- Grand Cross of the Military Order of Christ from Portugal (1996);
- Grand Official of the French Légion d'Honneur (2014);
- First Class Medal of the Order of Amílcar Cabral of Cape Verde (2012);
- Grand Cross of the Royal and Distinguished Spanish Order of Charles III (2011);
- Great Collar of the Order of East Timor (2010);
- Collar of the Order "pro Merito Melitensi" of the Order of Malta (2010);
- Grand Cross of the Order of Vytautas the Great of Lithuania (2009);
- Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland (2004);
- Grand Cross of the Order of Rio Branco of Brazil (1996);
- Grand Cross of the Order "El Sol del Perú" (1994);
- Grand Cross of the Order of the Rising Sun of Japan (1993);
- Grand Cross of the Order of Ouissam Alaouite of Morocco (1993);
- Grand Cross of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George of the United Kingdom (1993);
- Grand Cross of the Order of Orange-Nassau of the Kingdom of the Netherlands (1990);
- Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (1990);
- Grand Cross of the Order of the Lion of Finland (1990);
- Grand Cross of the National Order of the Southern Cross of Brazil (1990).
He has also been awarded more than thirty Honorary Degrees, among others, by:
- Brasília University, Brazil (2014);
- Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel (2014);
- National University of Ireland - University College Cork, Ireland (2014);
- Technical University of Lisbon, Portugal (2011);
- University of Ghent, Belgium (2011);
- Auckland University, New Zealand (2011);
- University of Geneva, Switzerland (2010);
- University of Chemnitz, Germany (2009);
- University of Pittsburgh, USA (2009);
- Catholic University of São Paulo, Brazil (2008);
- Nice Sophia Antipolis University, France (2008);
- Sapienza University of Rome, Italy (2007);
- Warsaw School of Economics, Poland (2007);
- Georgetown University, Washington, D.C., USA (2006);
- University of Genoa, Italy (2006);
- Kobe University, Japan (2006);
- University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom (2006).
In 2012, he was distinguished with the 'Premio Europeo Carlos V' of the 'Fundación Academia Europea de Yuste' in Spain.
Among other academic distinctions, he has received:
- the Medal of Honour of the Universidad Internacional Menéndez Pelayo in Santader, Spain (2014);
- the Plus Ratio Quam Vis Gold Medal of the Jagiellonian University of Cracow, Poland (2014);
- the Medal and Golden Insignia of the Real Instituto de Estudios Europeos of Madrid, Spain (2009);
- Honorary Member of the Portuguese Academy of History, Portugal (2008)
- Honorary Diploma of the École des Hautes Etudes Commerciales – HEC, France (2006).
Amongst other awards and distinctions, he is the recipient of:
- the 2013 Distinguished International Leadership Award from Atlantic Council in Washington D.C, USA;
- the Grand Collar of Merit of the Union's Court of Auditors, Brazil (2103);
- Honorary Member of the Portuguese Order of Engineers, Portugal (2012)
- Honorary President of the Portuguese Industrial Association in Lisbon, Portugal (2012)
- the Collar of the European Merit Foundation of Luxembourg (2010);
- the Laureate Quadriga Prize 2009 – "United for the Better," Germany;
- the Gold Medal of the Hellenic Parliament, Greece (2009).
In 2006 he was declared "European of the Year" by the newspaper European Voice and named Global Leader for Tomorrow by the World Economic Forum in 1993
He is an 'Honorary Citizen' of Lisbon, Rio de Janeiro, Athens, Nicosia, Valpaços, Lamego and Cantanhede.
He is the author of numerous publications on political science, international relations and European studies including, "Le système politique portugais face à l'intégration européenne" (Lisbon and Lausanne, 1983), "Uma Certa Ideia de Europa" (1999), "Mudar de Modelo" (2002) and "Reformar: Dois Anos de Governo" (2004).
He is married to Margarida Sousa Uva. They have three children: Luís (b. 1983), Guilherme (b.1986) and Francisco (b.1988), and a grand-son, Manuel (b.2010).
View complete profile [97 KB]
Declaration of interests [53 KB]