João Costa is the Secretary of State for Education in Portugal. He is a Full Professor of Linguistics at the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences at the Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. He graduated in Linguistics from the Faculty of Letters at the University of Lisbon, and completed his PhD in Linguistics at the University of Leiden. During his studies, he was a visiting scholar at MIT. His area of research is formal linguistics, language acquisition and development and educational linguistics. He is the author of several books and over 100 articles and book chapters. Until November 2015, he was the Dean of the School of Social Sciences and Humanities, at Universidade NOVA de Lisboa and President of the Scientific Council of Social Sciences and Humanities at the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia. He acted as member of the Scientific Council of the National Reading Plan, the National Commission of the International Institute for the Portuguese Language, and the Consulting Council of the Camões Institute. He was also President of the European Association of Linguistic Students (SOLE) and the Portuguese Linguistic Association. Besides his teaching and research activities at his University, he has been a guest lecturer at several universities in Brazil, Macau, Spain and the Netherlands.