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SYNBIOSIS — Result In Brief

Project ID: 230052
Funded under: FP7-REGIONS

Optimising biotech research and infrastructure in central Europe

An EU-funded project will optimise research collaboration and infrastructure in central Europe for the areas of biotechnology, life sciences, and information and communication technologies (ICT). In addition, efforts will be made to integrate research with the needs of the business sector to promote research-driven economic growth.
Optimising biotech research and infrastructure in central Europe
The project 'Maximising synergies for central European biotech research infrastructures' (SYNBIOSIS) is a collaboration between the research clusters in South Moravia (Czech Republic) and Friuli-Venezia-Giulia (Italy). Their expertise and interests lie in the areas that intersect bioinformatics, nano-bioscience, computational biology and biomedicine.

Through this initiative, partners will be able to ascertain the infrastructural needs of the South Moravian research cluster that can be met by EU Structural Funds (SFs). The Italian research cluster already has state-of-the-art infrastructure, including the free electron laser. Other areas that will be addressed include improving collaboration between bioclusters with complementary infrastructures and the industry.

A strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats analysis and EU benchmarking were carried out to identify areas for improvement that will benefit from funding. Mentoring activities were carried out through several meetings, reciprocal VIP excursions as well as transfer of contacts and information. This enabled the formation of regional executive platforms that include the participation of small and medium-sized enterprises.

Study visits were also conducted to other advanced biotech research clusters in Germany, France, Italy and Austria to promote strategic partnerships and international collaboration. As a result, a web-based directory containing documents on research policies, research agendas and research infrastructures was set up.

The Czech-Italian Summer School and brokerage event as well as the workshops that were held further promoted academia–industry participation and good practice transfer. The outcomes of these activities were brochures containing profiles and collaborative opportunities, a good practice handbook and a book of abstracts. Research integration was achieved through the creation of nine joint action scenarios and eight joint action plan activities for technology transfer in similar fields.

Project outcomes were disseminated on the project website, at conferences and through biocluster cooperation across Europe that included input from industry, academia and relevant authorities.

Overall, the activities of SYNBIOSIS will optimise the investment of EU SFs and the use of resources (personnel and infrastructure). These actions should strengthen research collaboration across Europe, and central Europe in particular.

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