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Whether at the start of a STEM career in the life sciences sector, or in a global leadership role, this unprecedented time could be pivotal to your career prospects.
COVID-19 has changed the world. Disruption that would have been previously unimaginable in the life sciences industry has become the norm. The pandemic, while putting the brakes on many parts of the economy, illuminates the need for a thriving and growing life sciences sector. The sector has shown its best side in many ways – collaborative, innovative and dynamic. There is no doubt that this creates opportunities for those ready to seize them.
As early as March 25th of this year, a group of global life science companies, alongside the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, announced an important collaboration to fast-track the development, manufacturing and delivery of diagnostics, treatments and vaccines for COVID-19. Massive amounts of government funding have subsequently been pledged to support organizations on board with the agenda.
By the start of May, there were over 100 confirmed vaccine projects in development globally, involving all of big pharma – GSK, Sanofi, J&J and Pfizer and others – working within much faster timelines than before the crisis. By mid-May, there were more than 1,000 clinical trials of treatments ongoing and 150 drug candidates being tested.
As for future investments, early signs from the biotech IPO market are encouraging, with almost no slow down since last year, which is likely to give investors’ confidence. Even as the life sciences sector holds up, there will be changes to the profile investors look for. The investment trend towards advanced therapeutics and immune-oncology is likely to accelerate. The diagnostics sector will also benefit, with high demand for testing kits.
Given that the life sciences sector as a whole is characterized by skill shortages at all levels, there will be a high level of demand for talent and career opportunities will be there for those bold enough to seize them.
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