The partners of the project “European Life Science Ecosystems” met together on the third common Interregional meeting, which was held in Tours in France. The Forum was organized by project partner Centre – Val de Loire with the cooperation of lead partner in the project Kaunas University of Technology between 22nd and 23rd November 2017.
The meeting was meant to define the problems and constraints in the creation of a network of stakeholders in the field of health and natural sciences. In each region there are larger or smaller constraints of interconnection between research and industry. The aim of the forum was the presentation and discussion about the development of the SWOT analysis and discussion of main constraints: market, infrastructure & equipment, skill and competencies, policies and social environment. All partners presented the national situation in the connection the research and development with the industry.
Each partner presented the situation in all fields and mainly defined the constraints, which they are met by the implementation. There is a low level of transferring the results of the research to the market usually. Researchers want to change the value from the patenting to the licensing. Partners agreed that the solution could be with the more closure cooperation with industries mainly in the field of Pre commercial procurement. Partners agree that the main issue is not the lack of funding but the lack of strategy to use funding (i.e. many similar labs not used at full capacity) and the fragmentation that derives from this. In the field of skills and competences are the possibilities to obtain the knowledge’s at the studies and internships in foreign universities, or they have various entrepreneurship programmes. The possible solution could be at preparing the ELISE Action Plan according to each partner. For all partners, it is the key, to have good policies that link high education and research to business (i.e. programmes that allow students to interact with companies, programmes that are not too long, involvement of Alumni in funding some internship programmes or in participating in mentorship activities, continuous educations programmes). As a remark, stakeholders point out that academia should pay attention not to focus too much on present day technology and to provide students with a “box of technical instruments” to be used to face future market changes. Partners agreed at the conclusion of the discussion, that the next step will be the preparation of suitable solutions to the defined constraints.
The second day the participants visited Biopharmaceuticals ecosystem which is operated by Centre – Val de Loire. The host partner gave a comprehensive overview of their Biopharmaceutical ecosystem, presenting both their funding programme and a selection of collaborative projects funded by it and currently running. Partners had the chance to meet with professionals involved in the projects funded by the R&D Biopharmaceutical programme and currently ongoing. The participants also were acquainted with the political and academic side of the projects in the centre.
The study visit programme was particularly interesting with visits to the BIO3 Institute (biotechnology and bioproduction) and INRA (National Institute of Agronomical Research).