BioWin, the Health Cluster of Wallonia (Belgium) has been chosen to chair the Council of European BioRegions (CEBR), a network of 40 health clusters and science parks throughout Europe. This appointment is, for BioWin and its members, the opportunity to raise awareness and visibility around the Walloon expertise but also to set potential new collaborations on the European stage.
Set up in 2006 as part of a European inter-cluster health project, the Council of European BioRegions (CEBR) helps to boost the competitiveness of the European biotech sector around the world. In January 2008, the network became independent thanks to the affiliations of its members (over a hundred since 2006) as well as its involvement in projects funded by Europe. Since 2013, the CEBR has been a notfor-profit association governed by Belgian law. The network is being run from its head office in Brussels by its secretary, Claire Skentelbery.
The main goals pursued by the CEBR are to bring together European regions involved in biotech innovation related to health (for the benefit of their members), share best practices when it comes to managing health clusters, and consolidate skills in areas of shared interest, such as clinical innovation, the internationalisation of SMEs and access to technological platforms. In 2014, the CEBR also launched directories describing the skills of members of affiliated clusters in different fields, such as biomarkers (2014) and medical equipment (2015).
“We are delighted with the potential positive impact that this mission involves, both in terms of international reputation and the establishment, in the frame of the CEBR, of activities that will help to boost the international outreach as well as the skills of our members. With this in mind, we have just set up a task group within the CEBR, focusing on the themes of training and skills management in SMEs”, explains Frédéric Druck, Chairman of the CEBR and Deputy Managing Director of BioWin. After acting as Vice-Chair of the CEBR for two years, BioWin is today succeeding BioCat, the Health Cluster of Catalonia (Spain), represented by Montserrat Vendrell, who chaired the CEBR from 2013 to 2015. Since January 2015, the BioWin cluster has also chaired the European Diagnostic Clusters Alliance (EDCA), a European network of clusters involved in in vitro diagnostic.
>> Learn more about: Life Sciences in Wallonia (BioWin)