November 19, 2020

LUMC invests in global outreach and international collaborations

Worldwide, the mobility of students, teachers and researchers has become an essential driver of innovation and creativity. Connecting bright minds and transcending borders boosts the international impact of cutting-edge research and the translation of knowledge to patient care in diverse contexts around the world. In addition, the current pandemic has emphasized even more that health(care) and scientific solutions know no borders. To further consolidate and streamline international mobility, Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC) launches the LUMC Global initiative.

With many knowledge-intensive institutions, Western Europe is one of the leading regions in the world of Life Sciences & Health. The province of South Holland, with many companies in the Leiden Bio Science Park (LBSP), the Medical Delta, and LUMC located at its core, is internationally recognized as an important Life Sciences & Health hub. Here, public and private parties work together on important (bio)medical and technological innovations and healthcare innovation.

The LUMC aims at identifying the causes for disease, improving diagnosis, prevention, and ultimately developing effective treatments. Different specialists of the LUMC collaborate with each other and with many others across the globe around research themes, because modern day science transcends traditional borders. Combining cross-border expertise may solve biomedical problems and bring answers not found when working in a stand-alone fashion. “We are always looking for regional, European and intercontinental connections with partners that are complementary to our own objectives and that add value to fulfilling our mission of getting better at ground-breaking levels”, says Suze Kruisheer, Lead LUMC Global.

Fostering meaningful and sustainable international partnerships

LUMC Global will reach out, stimulate, consolidate, and streamline multilateral initiatives that will generate the future leaders in worldwide health science. One of LUMC Global’s goals is to build on and expand existing international partnerships and to create new international collaborations. This is supported through a model where research, education and care are intertwined and where there is a focus on several countries and selected top institutes worldwide.

Decreased international mobility as an opportunity

Starting such an initiative in a time of decreased possibilities for mobility of both students and researchers is a challenge, but at the same time creates interesting opportunities. For instance, the Frontiers of Science course on 'Cutting-edge immunology: from chemistry to metabolism', took full advantage of the limited possibilities for student mobility.

Following an international trend already fuelled by Stanford University in 2011 when they offered their “Introduction to Artificial Intelligence” course as a free online class, LUMC Global launched a one-week live “Introduction to Cutting-edge immunology” online lecture series in October. International students from LUMC partner universities, mainly from Africa, Indonesia and China, and Dutch students participated in the lectures, 95 in total. It’s only one example of the projects that will be initiated under the LUMC Global umbrella.

 Bron: LUMC
Did you know? Much of our growth at Leiden Bio Science Park originated in the Park itself