The Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology of FORTH joins EU-LIFE as a new Associate Member
In July 1st 2020, the Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (IMBB) of the Foundation for Research and Technology-Hellas (FORTH) was officially accepted as an Associate Member of EU-LIFE.
EU-LIFE is an alliance of leading European research institutes in the life sciences with a mission to promote excellence in research, by implementing and disseminating best practices in the organization and operation of scientific establishments. Its members operate with similar principles of excellence, external reviews, independence, competitiveness and internationality.
The goals of EU-LIFE are:
- to be a voice for independent research institutes influencing European policy and to strongly advocate the key role of excellent research for the benefit of society;
- to create an environment that stimulates excellence in research through sharing good practices and expertise in research organization, including quality evaluation, infrastructure, personnel management, training and career development;
- to inspire institutions to support ethically responsible research and innovation, open science and knowledge transfer to society.
IMBB is honored by the invitation for EU-LIFE membership, which is viewed as a recognition of the Institute’s decades-long efforts to perform and promote frontier research that matches the excellence standards of leading European Centers. It was founded with the basic idea of establishing a Research Institute in Greece capable of performing cutting edge research in Molecular Biology, for the understanding of basic life processes and the parallel development of innovative biotechnology applications. Under the leadership of its Founder, Dr. Fotis Kafatos, the Institute quickly gained international visibility and recognition and was tagged as “a newcomer Institute to the traditional list of Cambridge, Paris, Heidelberg and Strasbourg” (Science 1989 Vol. 243 pp470-471). The initial vision and enthusiasm of Dr. Kafatos, marked the activities of the following decades when IMBB matured as a “transformer” of the Greek biomedical research landscape.
Throughout its history, IMBB pursued principles similar to those of EU-LIFE, with key characteristics of adherence to merit-based recruitment strategy, rigorous evaluation by international Scientific Advisory Committees, organizational and management structures focusing on creating optimal environment for performing top quality research, also by putting the scientific quality standards high, to the level of the top-performing international centers. In addition, in collaboration with the University of Crete, IMBB has “revolutionized” postgraduate biology education in Greece by introducing practices, such as rotations, qualifying exams, high-quality training courses with international faculty and independent mentorship.
IMBB has multiple benefits by joining the distinguished group of EU-LIFE institutions, including new opportunities for scientific collaborations and sharing experience in science resources, organization and use of research facilities, funding opportunities, postgraduate training, bioethics, gender equality and technology transfer issues. It also shares the view of EU-LIFE community that scientific excellence in life sciences can only be achieved through strong adherence to principles of quality, scientific integrity, ethical responsibility, societal accountability, ecological sustainability, gender equality and cultural diversity while promoting a strong dialogue with society.
IMBB is honored to be part of the alliance and will contribute with great enthusiasm towards the accomplishment of EU-LIFE’s mission.