Newsletter May 2024

France secures host role, paving the way to ERIC as PREP-IBISBA wraps up and EC boosts momentum

PREP-IBISBA, the 'Preparatory Phase of IBISBA,' has successfully concluded, laying the groundwork for establishing the IBISBA Research Infrastructure, ensuring it will provide research and innovation services that meet all stakeholder's needs. Additionally, it has paved the way for the formation of IBISBA-ERIC, establishing legal, governance strategic and operational structures to maximize its sustainability and enable wider adoption of industrial biotechnology across Europe.

Significant steps have been taken to build on the groundwork and progress towards the definition of IBISBA’s legal, strategic, and operational structure. The IBISBA-ERIC legal entity statutes were drafted, and its governance model, strategic and financial plans, and management structure were finalized as a foundation for its operations. 

The project evaluated and defined IBISBA’s value proposition, making clear to target customers why they should choose to work with IBISBA. It also reflected its understanding of target customers’ needs and preferences in its offerings.

The plan to implement IBISBA was delivered, consisting of a detailed plan of action covering 2024-2027. This comprehensive plan is intended to ensure sustainability, implement business processes, and establish a strategic position in its sector, culminating with the establishment of IBISBA-ERIC in 2026. This forward-thinking approach sets the stage for a promising future for IBISBA. A foundation of research institutes was established with a service offering developed to strengthen the European Research Area’s technological development capacity and effectiveness, scientific performance, innovation, and competitiveness.

Following the Preparatory Phase, the IBISBA-DIALS project is the next step. It aims to complete preparatory work and create and launch IBISBA as an ERIC. DIALS will equip IBISBA-ERIC with tools and procedures, securing operational status immediately after its creation. The project will provide IBISBA-ERIC with a committed stakeholder base, the potential to expand into new European and Associate Countries, and international visibility. Finally, DIALS will reinforce IBISBA’s scientific and technological excellence, embedding its activities in a responsible research and innovation framework and developing its role as an essential component of education in industrial biotechnology.

DIALS is worked on by a core group of project partners representing the most committed EU member countries bound by a Memorandum of Understanding. In the medium term, DIALS will provide the European RI landscape with a new landmark RI that uniquely produces translational research services in industrial biotechnology, thus supporting the development of smart biomanufacturing.

In March 2024, the European Commission published a series of actions to boost biotechnology and biomanufacturing. In its communication, the European Commission cited IBISBA, stating that it is expected to play a critical role in increasing EU competitiveness in the biotech industry, notably by providing a service network and digital repository to support R&D activities. By delivering new impetus and driving innovation, the European Commission intends to encourage long-term investment in infrastructure, skill building, and job creation while striving to eliminate scientific, technological, and legislative barriers.

Shortly after the Communication by the EC, France was officially designated to host the future IBISBA-ERIC, which will be managed by INRAE.

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