Successful competition in the global economy requires the passion, vision and commitment of local players to build long-term, sustainable enterprises that leverage both human and financial capital.
Scientific American will release the third annual Worldview: A Global Biotechnology Perspective at this year’s BIO International Convention. Created in partnership with BIO, the publication explores the diverse economic regions of the world, highlighting success stories, policy achievements, cutting-edge science and the unique challenges that lie ahead. This year’s report focuses on BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) country efforts to build local biotechnology hubs.
Worldview 2011 will feature the third annual Scientific American’s Worldview Bio-Innovation Scorecard, a review of individual country programs and policies aimed at growing local innovative biotechnology sectors. The Scorecard combines traditional statistical metrics with several hard-to-define “intangible” elements to create a “Bio-Innovation Quotient”, or B.I.Q. for each region. Countries with the top five innovation scores in 2010 included the U.S., Singapore, Canada, Sweden, and Denmark.
Until a decade ago, the U.S. was the undisputed leader in biotechnology development. Since then, global competition for the industry has rapidly increased. Many countries in Europe and Asia, for example, are pursuing policies to encourage biotech investment and development.
Countries and regions need to have a strong public commitment to funding basic scientific research to build and grow biotech. Several factors may contribute to forming and building a thriving biotechnology industry within individual countries, including:
Harmonization of patent laws and standards throughout the world. Biotech companies depend on comprehensive and consistent patent rights for innovation. Enhanced international cooperation in patent procurement and enforcement provides greater incentives for the expansion of biotech in the global marketplace.
A strong tax and regulatory system. Emerging companies are particularly dependent on government laws and regulations that encourage and reward innovation. In addition, biotechnology products must receive timely and high quality reviews that ensure the safety and efficacy of products while expediting the delivery of new therapies and technologies to patients and into the marketplace.
Capital formation. Adequate funding is inextricably linked to sustained advancement in cutting edge biotechnology innovation.
Attracting and retaining a constant flow of educated and technically proficient workers. Providing biotech education opportunities and workforce development programs will greatly enhance a country’s ability to strengthen the biotech industry within its borders.
Strong support for R&D. Innovative ideas become reality when companies make a strong commitment to invest in research and development. Countries and regions can support R&D through incentives for private companies to develop and commercialize basic research into useful products. It is a commitment to job creation, to consumers of products and services, and to economic growth.
A rigorous safety and efficacy testing and approval process. Every medicine should be rigorously tested and approved for safety and efficacy before entering the market. The integrity and efficiency of clinical trials is of the utmost importance to biotech companies developing biomedical products.
Encourage and support tech transfer. Develop a mechanism for transfer of technology from universities and research institutions to the private sector.
For more information on Worldview 2010, please visit http://saworldview.com/ .
For more information on the BIO International Convention, please visit http://convention.bio.org  .
Worldview 2011: Scientific American’s Bio-Innovation Scorecard Super Session at the BIO International Convention
Wednesday June 29, Time: 3:45 – 5:15 pm
Room 147 AB
Fareed Zakaria, Newsweek International editor and CNN host and author, will moderate a discussion with international thought leaders on encouraging global biotech growth and this year’s report. The session will highlight what countries are doing well, and what countries could be doing better to foster biotechnology.