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Amanda J. Billings
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This Story is provided by The Herald Times

Life sciences sector presents opportunity we can't let slip away

August 18, 2010

If Indiana is ever to recover from the loss of automobile and television manufacturing, it must establish itself as an attractive home and logical niche for 21st century industries.

At Monday’s forum hosted by the Indiana University Innovation Center, former mayor of Indianapolis Bart Peterson and policy experts from Washington, D.C.’s Council for American Medical Innovation urged Indiana’s public and private sectors to continue to develop strategies for encouraging and retaining life science industries in our state.

While Indiana already offers a favorable tax structure — an essential component of any economic development strategy — it’s also important for IU and Purdue to continue to partner with private industry to promote innovation in biomedical fields. IU’s Innovation Center certainly has the potential to play a critical role in incubating and launching innovative advances, and companies such as Eli Lilly have the technical expertise and institutional experience to help small start-up companies push their products and inventions through the complex federal regulatory process.

Encouraging life sciences education at all levels, including K-12, community college, undergraduate school and graduate research will be necessary if Indiana is going to compete. This means ensuring life sciences are emphasized in teacher training, with fast-track certification available to those who wish to leave the sciences to pursue a career in teaching.

And within the state, Bloomington is a logical hub for life sciences and in particular, medical innovation.
With IU, Ivy Tech, Cook Medical and a growing number of bioscience companies here, and with the cultural, geographic and aesthetic advantages our community offers, we have the foundation for being the premiere destination for an industry that is rapidly dividing and multiplying. Let’s not let it get away from us.

In late 2009, Indiana University officially opened its Innovation Center. Jeremy Hogan | Herald-Times

Copyright: 2010