The BIAL Foundation was created in 1994 by the BIAL pharmaceutical company and the Council of Rectors of Portuguese Universities with a mission to foster scientific study of the human being from both physical and spiritual perspectives. It is managed by representatives from both institutions.

Today, the BIAL Foundation is a globally renowned institution, particularly in the field of Neuroscience and Parapsychology research, aiming to stimulate new research that benefits people, improves health and attains new knowledge.

Its activities include the awarding of scientific awards within the scope of research in Health Sciences, namely the Prémio BIAL de Medicina Clínica, the BIAL Award in Biomedicine, one of the biggest European awards in the health area, and the Maria de Sousa Award, in partnership with the Portuguese Medical Association.

The BIAL Foundation has a Grants Programme for Scientific Research oriented towards the neurophysiological and mental study of the human being in the areas of Psychophysiology and Parapsychology.

Since 1996 the BIAL Foundation has organised the "Behind and Beyond the Brain" Symposia, a biennial forum for world-renowned experts in neurosciences and parapsychology and for several researchers supported by the Foundation.

Classified as a non-profit institution of public utility, the BIAL Foundation includes among its patrons the Portuguese President, the Council of Rectors of Portuguese Universities and the Portuguese Medical Association.