IDBS Blog | 28th August 2014

Externalization – A Collaborative Future for Life Sciences R&D

Nowadays, trying to cover the entire research and development (R&D) life cycle in-house makes little economic sense. Externalization is viewed as an effective way of dealing with the twin challenges of managing the immense amount of data generated by modern drug discovery techniques as well as having to find ways to mitigate costs.

Externalizing discovery screening processes has brought a raft of new players to the scene and is challenging old relationship patterns in R&D. We’ve witnessed a boom in the externalization of discovery research upstream of the preclinical and clinical areas, bringing pharmaceutical companies, CROs (Contract Research Organizations), other sector specialists and academia into closer and closer contact.

As these organizations look to collaborate, challenges abound on the road to making sure that externalization results in a win-win scenario for all stakeholders. Efficiency and trust underpin the success of collaboration. The reputational and IP risks inherent to sharing information mean that transparent and reliable infrastructure solutions are key to achieving a positive outcome.

On a more practical level, the data generated by different stakeholders needs to be easily shareable, easy to incorporate back into in-house-systems and its integrity and transparency must ensure it produces fully reproducible results. And if externalization isn’t properly executed, its benefits can be negated by extended decision cycle times. Again, choosing the right infrastructure solution represents the difference between success and failure.

If you’d like to learn more about how you can benefit from the advantages of externalized, collaborative ways of working while mitigating the downsides, join me and Justin L. Gazard of Pfizer Inc. for our webinar, ‘Externalize costs without breaking the data value chain’ on September 17, 2014.

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