Name: Sofia Montalvão
Job title/position and company's name: Product Stewardship Business Borealis Polymers Oy (part of Borealis AG)
Education: Ph.D. Pharmacology – Centre for Drug Research, University of Helsinki, Finland/ M .Sc. Biological Engineering – University of Minho, Portugal


What was your dream job as a child? What led you to your school of choice?

Dream Job as a child was a Flight Steward – dream to fly and experience new things. I have had always interest in searching a balance between passions: science, health, environment and safety. During my studies, I did not heard a lot about the path of Regulatory Affairs or Product Stewardship, also because it was a relatively new term and area. However, throughout the years, I kept learning and exploring more and more about it. I’ve decided that would be a great career to carry on, combined with my passions. On Product Stewardship, we are mainly responsible to manage the health, safety and environmental aspects of products throughout their lifecycle and across the value chain in order to prevent or minimize negative impacts and maximize value.

What does your company do/manufacture? What kind of innovations is your company working on?

Borealis is one of the world’s leading providers of advanced and circular polyolefin solutions, being also a European market leader in base chemicals and the mechanical recycling of plastics. Life demands progress and therefore Borealis is always innovating for a more sustainable living. The strategy for the following years include the transformation to a circular economy and the creation of an even more customer-centric organization that adds value on a global scale.

What are you most excited about at your job?

As a regulatory expert I have to be in contact with many parts of the business, working with a diverse group of stakeholders from different countries and departments, but all collaborating for a common goal. In such a dynamic role - which involves a mix of science, law and business - challenges on adaptability and strategic thinking skills are put to test every day, which is exciting! Also, I am constantly learning and expanding my knowledge from a product safety perspective and wider business perspective.

Sofia´s career on a timeline

Your favorite school subjects at middle school? Science, Biology and Geology.
Your first summer job? None, it is not common in Portugal. :)
Education – Ph.D. Pharmacology and M.Sc. Biological Engineering.
What did you do during studies? Any volunteer work? - As a volunteer, I was acting as an educator for helping children with disabilities (e.g. autism) in their daily tasks and I’ve also participated in UEFA ceremony venue/spectator services and as organisational staff of an University of Minho conference.
Did you work/study abroad? - Yes – part of my Master thesis (dissertation) was made in Prague (Czech Republic) in the Institute of Microbiology of the Academy of Sciences of Czech Republic.
Previous work experiment (the most important ones to you)? - My Ph.D. and internship experience at an EU regulatory agency.
Lastly your current position? Specialist, Product Stewardship Business at Borealis Polymers Oy (part of Borealis AG).