Olympic Fever: Who would you give the medals to, and what for?
It’s gripping isn’t, all this wall-to-wall sport!
But if our industry was to have an Olympics, what would it look like? What would the opening ceremony be? Who would sponsor it, and what would the big events be?
Taking the format of the London 2012 opening ceremony, we need to think about the defining events and discoveries that have shaped the life sciences industry. The discovery of the DNA Double Helix would be in there, along with Alexander Flemming, Florence Nightingale amongst others. The changes in technology – scanners, diagnostics have revolutionised and transformed our environment, in a similar way to the industrial revolution depicted in Stratford on Friday.
As for the sponsors, the big corporate ones would be sure to monopolise that . . . GSK, Pfizer, and Roche for starters. In fact GSK already have a major role in London 2012 supplying all the lab facilities for the drug testing.
So the main events? The men’s 100m, the road race, and the big swimming races – what are the equivalent for us? Interestingly, I think biggest philanthropic contribution should be a major one – after all, it does keep the pedals turnings in most labs across the world. The other ‘events’ that spring to mind are the endurance races that will be running on a time-scale far greater than any events we are going to see in London. . . the cure for cancer, vaccines for malaria, an effective public health campaign against obesity, diet and inactivity, and a health service that is sustainable, effective and patient-orientated.
These goals are big, and certainly endurance. They are not going to be won by a singular country or team, but by the collaboration of many. If achieved, the ‘legacy’ will be spectacular