Frequently Asked Questions
Below you will find answers to some of the most frequently asked question about Medicon Valley, Medicon Valley Alliance, our initiatives and activities, membership, and funding.
You are of course always welcome to contact us.
Q: What is Medicon Valley?
Medicon Valley is a bi-national cluster that spans the island of Zealand in Eastern Denmark and the Skåne region of Southern Sweden. It is one of Europe’s strongest life science clusters with a large number of life science companies and research institutions located within a small geographical area. The cluster is connected by the Øresund Bridge, which makes commuting between Denmark and Sweden an easy everyday task. Medicon Valley is one region with synergies from two countries.
Q: What is Medicon Valley Alliance?
Medicon Valley Alliance is a network organization working for the life science organizations in Medicon Valley. As a non-profit member organization we carry out initiatives on behalf of the life science community with the goal of creating new research and business opportunities within the region.
Q: When was MVA founded?
Medicon Valley Academy (MVA) commenced in 1997 as an EU Intereg II project and was initiated by the universities in Lund and Copenhagen, strongly supported by the major pharmaceutical companies in the region. An important factor was the bridge between Denmark and Sweden that was expected to highly stimulate the number of interactions between research and business communities in the two countries. In 2007, Medicon Valley Academy changed its name to Medicon Valley Alliance to signal the broad foundation in the region – not only in academia but also in the business and private domain of the region.
Q: Who decides what MVA should engage in?
MVA is a democratic organization. At the Ordinary General Assembly members can express their views and give suggestions for future activities. In the course of the year, the Board of Directors closely follows the various projects and activities of MVA, and meetings are held with the main stakeholders throughout the year in order to keep the organization focused on issues that ensure a healthy development in the region.
Q: What is the main function of MVA?
MVA initiates, communicates, and encourages cooperation between companies, organizations, and public authorities in order to develop activities within health and life science in the Øresund region (Medicon Valley). MVA also takes part in the international marketing of Medicon Valley.
Q: Is MVA a unique organization or are there others in the Medicon Valley region performing similar tasks?
MVA is unique in the sense of being a cross-border association for a regional life science cluster.
On the Swedish and Danish sides of Medicon Valley there are science parks that play an important role in the development of life science business, and there are trade organizations for pharma, medtech and other industries, but MVA is the only organization representing the entire health and life science sector in the cross-border region.
Q: Is Medicon Valley Alliance the publisher of the mediconvalley.com website?
No, the mediconvalley.com website is brought to you by Invest in Skåne and Copenhagen Capacity. On this website you will find information about the companies based in the Medicon Valley region and the opportunities that lie in this region. The aim of Copenhagen Capacity is to promote the region of Greater Copenhagen with the purpose of attracting and maintaining foreign companies within all business sectors. Invest in Skåne performs similar activities on the Swedish side of Medicon Valley.
mva.org is the website of Medicon Valley Alliance, giving facts about the organization and supplying up-to-date information about initiatives and events in Medicon Valley.
Q: Does Medicon Valley Alliance publish the magazine Medicon Valley?
No, the magazine Medicon Valley is published by BJmedia and there is no relation between this magazine and Medicon Valley Alliance.
Medicon Valley Alliance and RASK Media launched the magazine LifeSciences Insight in June 2010 to publish overviews and insights – as the name indicates – about the many complex issues and challenges in the ever-changing field of life science. LifeSciences Insight is dedicated to raising awareness and interest in science and business in Medicon Valley. Besides a national distribution in Denmark and Sweden, LifeSciences Insight is also distributed to international partners and stakeholders with an interest in our region. The final magazine LifeSciences Insight was published with Medicon Valley Alliance by the end of 2012.
Q: How is MVA organized?
The day-to-day business of MVA is run by a secretariat, based in Ørestad City (Copenhagen).
There are up to twenty-one board members representing the different categories of member organizations. Any group member shall have the right but not a duty to appoint a member of the Board of Directors; the majority of board members should, however, represent public authorities at all times.
Furthermore, a member organization can be given the right by the Board of Directors to appoint several members of the Board. Other members of the Board (minimum 8 and maximum 12) are elected at the Ordinary General Meeting.
Q: Who has influence on the Board and the activities of MVA?
All members are welcome to send in suggestions to the Board of Directors. Depending on the nature of the issue, the suggestions can be discussed at the meetings of the Board of Directors, which are held four times a year or they can be dealt with at the Ordinary General Meeting.
Q: Are there any member groups who are given more attention by MVA than others?
The initiatives and activities are based on the needs and requirements of our members. All members are encouraged to make suggestions and come up with new ideas for networks and events. Therefore you could say that the members that are the most active, will receive the most attention by MVA.
Q: How important are the individual member groups to MVA compared to each other?
All member groups are important as they make out the life science cluster which is Medicon Valley. Through its activities, MVA tries to strengthen the interaction between member groups and the development of various alliances of cooperation.
Q: How is the Danish – Swedish focus of MVA balanced?
One of the strengths of MVA is its cross-border organizational structure. This enables knowledge-sharing and transfer of technology between universities, hospitals and industry between the Danish and Swedish sides of Medicon Valley. The fact that the Danish side of Medicon Valley includes the Capital Region of Copenhagen and thereby boasts higher population density means that the majority of members are on the Danish side. However, the Malmö-Lund area on the Swedish side is becoming an increasingly more important hub for higher education institutions, hospitals as well as industry.
Q: How does the collaboration with the universities work?
MVA has strong ties with the universities within the cluster that offer life science related education, and each university has a representative on the Board of Directors.
Q: What kind of initiatives can we expect to see from MVA in the coming years?
Initiatives will be made to increase the attractiveness of Medicon Valley to international investors as well as skilled scientists and other experts. This will be done by identifying the strongholds of the region – Beacons that build on the existing competences and characteristics of Medicon Valley – and turning them to attractors. This strategic effort requires funding, and one main challenge is to encourage the main stakeholders to cooperate on a future strategy, with regard to finances and innovative ideas as well as expertise.
MVA will also lobby politicians for increased spending in education so the workforce will be top-of-class standard.
Q: What are the benefits of being a member of MVA?
There are many benefits of being a member of MVA. Amongst other benefits, members can
- participate for free or at a reduced price in the many different seminars, conferences and other network activities
- get the support from MVA to initiate and implement cross-border projects
- contribute to the continuous development and international branding of Medicon Valley as a world class life science cluster
- use MVA’s extensive international network and close contact with other life science clusters to identify new partners for business or science
- get discount on many different services by using some of our member benfits
Q: How do we become a member?
You can apply for membership by filling in this form.
Q: What does it cost to be a member?
The membership subscription includes a basis fee and an additional fee depending on the number of employees. The fee structure is linear and can be found here.
Read more in the membership section.
Q: As a member, do I have influence on MVA-decisions and future initiatives?
Yes, MVA has a democratic structure with an Ordinary General Meeting where all members are encouraged to make proposals. Throughout the year, suggestions and initiatives from members are also warmly welcomed.
Q: How is MVA funded?
MVA is mainly funded by our members who pay an annual fee in a linear structure (see under Membership section). Furthermore, MVA seeks funding for particular projects and initiatives from the EC Interreg funds and from corporate sponsors. The finances of MVA are public, and the annual reports are available on the MVA website.