Irene Fonseca holds a PhD in Mathematics for the University of Minnesota, and a degree in Mathematics for the University of Lisbon. She was honored in 1977 with the award Grande Official da Ordem Militar de Sant’Iago da Espada.
She is the Director of the Center for Nonlinear Analysis in University of Carnegie Mellon since 1998, whose mission the applied mathematics investigation and traineeship in the interface between mathematics, physical sciences and engineer. In 2003, she was nominated Mellon College of Science Professor of Mathematics and in 2014 she was nominated University Professor. Irene Fonseca is Fellow of the American Mathematical Society and of the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, of which was President between 2013 and 2014. In 2012 she was awarded with Doctor Honoris Causa for the Nova University Nova of Lisbon, and she received the prize Seeds of Science from Ciência Viva.
Irene Fonseca published various books and has more than one hundred publications related with her research. She is the editor of sixteen professional magazines, and nowadays she is the member of ten panels of scientific evaluation of research centers, institutes, and mathematic departments in the United States of America and Europe.
She is a member of the Portuguese Diaspora Council since 2015.