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Investing in the future of science

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    At UCB we devote a lot of resources to discovering new medicines. We collaborate with universities and other companies, build state-of-the-art research and production facilities, and engage with patients to understand their needs.

    Yet looking to the long-term, one of the key limiting factors to the future success of the innovative medicines sector is access to high-calibre scientists. We need bright, creative science graduates to share our commitment to R&D.

    Top researchers do not appear overnight. The first step is cultivating an interest in science among young people and providing them with a path that leads them from their first classroom experiment to a cutting edge research centre in a university or in industry.

    That is why UCB runs Work in Science Week in the UK. Our goal is to ignite a passion for science among young people and encourage them to pursue careers in R&D.

    As part of the initiative, school students were given the chance to work with our researchers to gain a real-world insight into life in the lab.

    We were thrilled to welcome Lord Professor Robert Winston to our world-leading immunology research centre as part of this project. Lord Wintston is one of the most recognisable scientists in the UK thanks to his stellar record in medical research and TV appearances.

    The value of Work in Science Week was illustrated by a new survey, commissioned by UCB, which found that despite great levels of pupil enthusiasm for science, 37% do not have access to advice on the careers available in science.

    The vast majority of pupils surveyed rated science as exciting and said they might be interested in choosing a science-related career. But turning that enthusiasm into graduates is an area where UCB and other responsible industry leaders must take a lead.

    It is not simply because science can be fascinating that we want young people to work in research. Future prosperity depends on having the brain power to fuel innovation-led growth. This serves the interests not just of patients, who might benefit from new therapies, but of society at large.

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