Paulina Mata graduated (1978) in Chemical Engineering by Instituto Superior Técnico, Lisboa and got a Ph.D. (1989) in Organic Chemistry by Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade Nova de Lisboa (FCT-UNL).
She is an Assistant Professor at Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia - Universidade Nova de Lisboa. Her research interests are Molecular Gastronomy, Stereochemistry and Chemical Education.
She coordinates the MSc in Gastronomical Sciences, a partnership of FCT-UNL and ISA-UL (Instituto Superior de Agronomia da Universidade de Lisboa).
Since 2001 she has been doing research on the development of technological applications of Molecular Gastronomy. Particularly techniques involving the use of hydrocolloids, having supervised several MSc and a PhD thesis in this area.
Since 2005 she is a Member of the Advisory Subcommittee of the Chemical Nomenclature and Structure Representation Division of IUPAC.
Collaborates with Ciência Viva, since 2001. She belonged to a team that developed the activities “A Cozinha é um Laboratório” (Your Kitchen is a Laboratory) which uses food related themes for the introduction of scientific knowledge.
She has written for 5 years regularly in the press on topics related to cooking and science (Diário de Notícias 2004 - 2007; Intermagazine - Professional Journal of Hospitality and Catering 2005-2008).
Author of two books of science dissemination using themes related to cooking and food: “The fun-flavoured way to learn science”, Ciência Viva, 2009 (with portuguese version), and (in co-authorship with M Guerreiro) A Cozinha é um Laboratório, Fonte da Palavra, Lisboa, 1st edition, 2009; 2nd edition, 2010; 3rd edition, 2010.
She participated in several TV programs, namely AB Science (Series of 13 programs of science dissemination) - RTP1, 2010 Magazine de Ciência e Tecnologia - RTP2 and 4XCiência - RTP N.