Institute News

Courtesy of Fastercures
Francis Collins (left) with biotech journalist Luke Timmerman.

Published January 17, 2017

Tech Knows the Way to San Jose

In December, the Institute unveiled the latest results of its Best-Performing Cities index, an annual look at where America's jobs are created and sustained, with rankings of some 400 large and small metros across the country. Returning to the top spot this year: San Jose, California, yet more evidence of Silicon Valley's ongoing leadership in creating an ecosystem for innovation and entrepreneurship. By the same token, California's economy as a whole continues to shine, with 6 of the top-25 spots in the large metro category and 2 in the top-10 small metros. But strikingly, the top small metro is not in the Golden State. It's Bend, Oregon, which has carved out an enviable niche that mixes high-tech, trendy micro-breweries and a developing expertise in drone technology.

Trump Change

Part of the discussion at Partnering for Cures was how the Trump White House could best serve the cause of innovation in biomedicine. To sharpen the exchange, FasterCures asked some 150 leaders in biomedical research one core question: what are the opportunities for the President-elect to propel biomedical innovation forward? The results, published in the report "Rx for Innovation: Recommendations for the New Administration," can be found on the Institute website. "I was struck by the intense optimism people had, not only for what innovation lies ahead but also for the opportunity that this transfer of power offers," says FasterCures Executive Director Margaret Anderson.

P4C Matters

The Institute's FasterCures group convened its annual Partnering for Cures conference in New York in November, bringing together innovators from across domains of medical research. The meeting featured panels, workshops, dozens of roundtable discussions and – probably most productive – plenty of time for informal networking. Held each fall for nearly a decade, P4C is animated by the passion of participants, ranging from academic researchers to pharma executives to patient advocates, all of them intent on speeding treatments that can improve (and even save) lives. At this year's event, FasterCures bestowed its first-ever Partner of the Year award to Francis Collins, the pioneering geneticist who is now director of the National Institutes of Health, for his commitment to expanding medical innovation through collaboration and his tireless work on behalf of patients throughout his career.