A commonly used definition of biotechnology is “the application of life science knowledge to industrial products, processes or services, with applications in human healthcare, veterinary medicine, agriculture, industrial manufacturing and environmental management.” The definition of life sciences is typically broader and also includes medical devices and diagnostics.
Life sciences has been identified as a strategic priority by economic development agencies in many countries and regions around the world for a number of reasons including, the high annual growth rate of the sector to date and projections of continued growth, the significant indirect and induced economic impacts associated with the development of biotechnology companies, life science jobs tend to be relatively well paid, the research and development spend of the sector is high and the potential of advances in the life sciences to deliver significant positive economic, health and environmental benefits.
- economic impact assessment of Universiteit Leiden, the oldest university in the Netherlands and one of Europe’s top universities, and of the teaching and research hospital, Leids Universitair Medisch Centrum including an assessment of the role of the institutions in the development of Leiden Bio Science Park, home to one of Europe’s leading life sciences clusters;
- assessment of the impact of Roslin Institute on the wider economy including the role of the Institute in the commercialisation of research and on improving agricultural productivity, an important consideration in light of climate change and associated food security concerns;
- evaluation of the Orphans Fund Project, a fund to support collaboration between,SMEs and life science research institutes in England and Scotland;
- development of a sector action plan for Midlothian’s animal sciences sector, building on the area’s world leading research base;
- economic appraisal of proposals to provide business advice and development services to life sciences businesses in the North West of England, delivered by Medilink;
- assessment of the costs and benefits of two options for the development of a new building for the world famous MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge;
- modelling future trends in the Scottish life sciences cluster for Scottish Enterprise, based on analysis of global trends and Scottish competitiveness in key sub-sectors;
- multi criteria analysis appraisal of University College Dublin’s proposals to build the Charles Institute for Dermatology, a new research facility that will attract world-class scientists leading to the discovery of new treatments and therapies;
- economic and financial appraisal of proposals to expand the site of BioQuarter (the major life sciences cluster being developed in Edinburgh) to allow for future expansion of commercial, health and academic space;
- evaluation of the networking and knowledge transfer support organisation, NEXXUS, the West of Scotland’s BioScience Network;
- cost benefit analysis, business plan and major project application for the Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine, a major new research and commercialisation facility at Edinburgh’s BioQuarter;