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Open Innovation in Science

With its fully open platforms for public-private research collaboration, Aarhus University has become a frontrunner in open innovation in science. A number of Danish and international companies are now collaborating with the university on research that will benefit all parties – and all the world.

Open science is basically about making scientific research and data accessible to everyone. This alone is a new paradigm in the way in which researchers share knowledge with each other and the outside world, and the idea is gaining ground, not least because the European Commission now requires openness as a condition for research and innovation grants.

Aarhus University has successfully expanded the idea to make openness an integral part of the actual research. University researchers and industrial businesses are collaborating on generating fundamental new knowledge and innovation, which is openly available to everyone and no-one may take out patents.  On the other hand, everyone can then freely exploit this knowledge to develop and patent their own unique products.

The first initiative, SPOMAN, focused on materials science, and a number of leading Danish industrial companies took part in the project. Read more about SPOMAN.

Building blocks for the pharmaceuticals of the future

The current major project, ODIN (Open Discovery Innovation Network), will support the development of new drugs by sharing knowledge and data from the earliest and pre-competitive research phases.

The Novo Nordisk Foundation is funding ODIN with DKK 54.5 million. In addition to the three faculties of Health, Natural Sciences and Technical Sciences at AU, nine Danish and foreign companies in the pharmaceuticals and biotech industries have helped design the new model that will make it easy for researchers and companies to create the building blocks required to develop future drugs. For example, this could be the development of new platforms and techniques to test the specificity and unintended side-effects of drugs. Read more about ODIN.