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Do regional collaborations matter in biomedicine? The case of Western Sweden. Jens Laage-Hellman IMIT and RIDE at Chalmers University of Technology Annika Rickne IMIT, The Dahmén Institute and Lund University. Background.

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do regional collaborations matter in biomedicine the case of western sweden

Do regional collaborations matter in biomedicine? The case of Western Sweden

Jens Laage-HellmanIMIT and RIDE at Chalmers University of Technology

Annika RickneIMIT, The Dahmén Institute and Lund University

background
Background
  • ”Interactive research” on a regional development project (”Biomedical Development in Western Sweden”)
  • Purpose: study the dynamic mechanisms involved in RIS development
  • Underlying theoretical approach: Innovation systems
  • Functional approach
  • Research activities:
  • Documentation of the early history
  • Survey to biomedical firms
  • Survey to biomedical researchers
  • Present paper: collaboration patterns in industry
research puzzle
Research puzzle
  • The interactive character of the innovation process
  • Acquisition and development of knowledge/resources
  • Learning
  • Customers/users, suppliers, universities…
  • Esp. In science-based and knowledge-intensive industries
  • The importance of regional collaboration/networking
  • Tacit nature of knowledge
  • Regions are the locus of innovation
  • Proximity matters!
  • Clustering of firms (e.g. in biotech)
  • Advantageous for individual firms to locate in strong clusters/RIS
  • The role of globalised collaboration/networking
research questions
Research questions
  • Main question: Do regional collaborations matter in biomedicine?
  • Specific issues:
  • How does the firms value different types of knowledge?
  • Through what types of channels is knowledge identified and acquired?
  • What is the relative importance of different types of partners?
  • What are the reasons for collaboration?
  • To what extent is the geographical dimension important?
research design
Research design
  • Case: a) biomedicine, b) Western Sweden
  • Data collection: a) survey, b) complementing interviews
discussion and conclusions
Discussion and conclusions
  • 1. Collaboration with business partners
  • a/ Customers
  • Important R&D partners
  • Usually located outside the region
  • - small region/country + niche products
  • - ”borne globals” - need for country-specific adaptations
  • Important for small/young firms to have pioneering customers nearby (e.g. Sahlgrenska University Hospital)
slide17

b/ Suppliers

  • Almost as important as customers (ESI)
  • Spurred by increasing ”outsourcing” (esp. medtech)
  • Advantageous to have local suppliers (esp. for SMEs) …..but often difficult to find
  • Lack of ”critical mass” in the industry: stimulate entry of supplier firms
slide18

b/ Suppliers

  • Almost as important as customers (ESI)
  • Spurred by increasing ”outsourcing” (esp. medtech)
  • Advantageous to have local suppliers (esp. for SMEs) …..but often difficult to find
  • Lack of ”critical mass” in the industry: stimulate entry of supplier firms
  • Some policy-implications (business partners)
  • HC organ. that is open to industry collaboration
  • Not enough to support collaboration within the region
  • Need to support internationalisation of SME
  • Support of local industry should include suppliers
slide19

2. Universities

  • Almost as important as the business partners, but in a different way
  • Science-based industry
  • Basic technology (inventions or knowledge)
  • Regional partners are important
  • Creation of new firms (USOs)
  • Cooperation opportunities for established firms
  • Tacit knowledge need for proximity
  • Natural for USOs, but important to broaden the interface
  • The Oulo case: tight U-I networking strong cluster
slide20

3. Other biomedical firms

Relatively little collaboration between biomedical firms in the region

Specialisation in different technology/product areas

One exception: biomaterials and cell therapy cluster

concluding remark
Concluding remark

Yes, regional collaborations matter in biomedicine

– to some extent

The role of regional universities

Esp. for SMEs

Business partners: regional collaboration is less important

biomedical industry
Biomedical industry
  • Broad definition
  • Firms involved in development, manufacturing and/or marketing of:
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Medical devices (incl. aids for disabled)
  • ”Biotech supply” products
  • Clinical/contract research services
biomedical industry in western sweden
Biomedical industry in Western Sweden

More than 200 biomedical firms

Six large firms: one pharma

five medtech

Three sub-sectors:

Pharma: one giant; few others

Medtech: many companies (large – small)

fragmented

cluster in biomaterials (+ cell therapy)

”Biotech supply”: no large companies

some small companies

r d and innovation activities
R&D and innovation activities

R&D expenditures:

Spend more than 10% on R&D: 60% of the firms

Spend more than 20% on R&D: 38% of the firms

(75% spend less than 10 man-years)

Mainly product development 95% of the firms

Scientific work: 60% of the firms

Radical innovations: 80%

Incremental innovations: 80%

75% run 1-3 projects