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University of Basel

Economic impact & innovation

Participants examine paper lying on a table.
Workshop in the context of an «Entrepreneurs Club» event of the Innovation Office. (Image: © Innovation Office, University of Basel)

With the Innovation Initiative, the university is systematically seeking to improve the transfer of knowledge and technology to wider society. A sweeping expansion of investment in the start-ups supported by the initiative, as well as numerous new start-ups founded over the past two years, highlight the economic significance of these activities.

Sustainable Development Goal 9.3 and 9.5
Contribution to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (https://sdgs.un.org/)

 

Founding start-ups is an important driver of the regional economy, since the appropriate investment can make knowledge-based innovations a reality. The University of Basel plays a central role by facilitating transfer and training founders in the required expertise, and helping them network in the community.

Successful start-up community

Portrait of Lucia Mori in the laboratory between bottles filled with yellow and red liquids
Even in her dual role as researcher and entrepreneur, Lucia Mori's thirst for knowledge about how the immune system works remains unabated. (Image: Oliver Hochstrasser, © University of Basel)

Dr Lucia Mori is the co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Matterhorn Biosciences. Lucia can now clinically advance her trailblazing research into cell-based cancer therapies developed at the Department of Biomedicine with Matterhorn Biosciences. The MR1T cells she discovered have the potential to fight all types of cancer. Matterhorn Biosciences, founded in May 2019, is the recipient of the largest Series A funding round for a start-up at the University of Basel so far, with CHF 30 million raised in summer 2020.

Christian Elias Schneider, Head Innovation & Entrepreneurship

The heart of the Innovation Office's work is always the people who strive to connect and implement research findings and entrepreneurial ideas innovatively and creatively. Through the Propelling Grants, the university is further strengthening their expertise and supports them financially.

Christian Elias Schneider, Head Innovation & Entrepreneurship

The start-up community in Basel has become larger and better connected: in 2019, the Entrepreneurs Club swelled to 775 people. Due to the pandemic, digital and individual offers dominated in 2020, which reduced the number of people reached by the Club to 215.

The number of people participating in start-up projects (start-ups in the planning stage) and already founded start-ups similarly rose sharply over the previous two years, as the graphic below illustrates.1

Innovation and technology transfer key figures 2019/2020

2019
2020

Propelling Grants

2019

0

2020

2

Start-up foundations

2019

9

2020

10

Investment in university start-ups

2019

CHF 62.0 m

2020

CHF 74.4 m

Invention disclosures

2019

41

2020

50

Priority patent applications

2019

22

2020

25

Licenses/options

2019

14

2020

22

New licensed products introduced to the market

2019

0

2020

1

Workshops with industry partners

2019

63

2020

37

New collaborative projects with industry

2019

1

2020

3

Goals & actions

Goals 2021/2022
Actions
Responsible unit
Goals 2021/2022

Increase the impact of Innovation & Corporate Relations

Actions

Greater support of diversity (in particular women and minorities) in the foundation of start-ups through workshops, events and community building; at least two events per year


Support and guidance of at least six start-up foundations per year

Responsible unit

Innovation & Corporate Relations

 

 

 

 


Innovation & Corporate Relations

Goals 2021/2022

Increase expertise and skills in innovation and entrepreneurship

Actions

Continue to develop range of courses through topics such as Leadership & Culture and Communication of Sustainability Issues

Responsible unit

Innovation & Corporate Relations

Footnote
Footnote

[1] Due to differing data collection methods, the graphic from the 2019/2020 Sustainability Report is not directly comparable to the graphic from the 2017/2018 Sustainability Report. No data was collected in 2019.

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