Baden-Württemberg’s new Minister of Science, Research, and the Arts visits EMBL

During a visit to the Heidelberg EMBL campus, Minister Petra Olschowski learned about EMBL's current research programme, its scientific operations and local collaborations, and explored its Imaging Centre and World of Molecular Biology exhibition

Minister Petra Olschowski and members of EMBL staff and directorate are standing in front of the EMBL Heidelberg main entrance.
Baden-Württemberg´s new Minister of Science, Research, and the Arts visits EMBL Heidelberg. Credits: Stuart Ingham Bailey/ EMBL.

Minister Olschowski’s visit to EMBL Heidelberg as an “outstanding European international research institution” is special for her, she stated. “This campus alone is quite extraordinary with its great location, the impressive infrastructure and the many young people talking about their research in multiple languages.

I was impressed by the points of connection to current issues – be it climate change, the life sciences or artificial intelligence. Baden-Württemberg and Heidelberg are proud to host this institution,” the minister said.

EMBL Director General Edith Heard introduced the minister to EMBL’s current scientific programme ´From Molecules to Ecosystems´ and highlighted the organisation’s commitment to scientific research and services that deliver international societal impact.

“We were pleased to meet Minister Olschowski and discuss with her the importance of EMBL as a renowned international research institute here in the region and beyond. EMBL has grown to be an indispensable part of the region’s scientific community, ever invested in synergistic and cooperative relationships. We offer practical technical support and scientific assistance openly, and enrich Heidelberg as an important science location,” said Heard.

Since originally starting at the Baden-Württemberg Ministry of Science, Research and Arts (MWK) as State Secretary in 2016, Minister Olschowski has been committed to successful programs such as the Innovation Campus initiatives in the state. EMBL is part of the Innovation Campus Health and Life Science Alliance Heidelberg Mannheim, which aims to establish the Rhine-Neckar region as an international leader for biomedicine and technology.

“As an established network, the Health and Life Science Alliance creates a strong sense of community among regional partners. Even though there was, of course, previously close cooperation among the individual participants such as EMBL, the university hospitals, and DKFZ, the alliance creates a synergy that benefits the entire region. It promotes mutual support in all areas from basic to applied research,” said Peer Bork, Director of EMBL Heidelberg.

In his presentation on EMBL Heidelberg’s scientific operations and local collaborations, Bork stressed the importance of research institutions such as EMBL in creating vibrant local ecosystems between industry and academia.

While Minister Olschowski has visited EMBL before, this is her first visit in her official role as minister. The minister was accompanied by Dr. André Schmandke, Head of the Ministry’s Research and Innovation Policy Unit with a focus on medical, bio- and natural sciences.

Tags: collaboration, cooperation, Health + Life Science Alliance Heidelberg Mannheim, heidelberg, visitor


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