Manitoba STEM: Collaborations and Future Goals




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Video title: Manitoba STEM: Collaborations and Future Goals
Released on: December 23, 2009. © PharmaVentures Ltd
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  • Summary
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In this episode of PharmaTelevision News Review, Fintan Walton talks with Douglas McCartney, Senior Executive Director at Manitoba STEM.

Filmed at AusBiotech 2009, they discuss:

• Manitoba’s model to attract and generate innovation
• how the model is practically implemented
• the Minnesota and Manitoba collaboration
• advantages of collaborating with STEM
• how to get a STEM collaboration
• where their strength lies
• STEM’S goals for the future
Manitoba's model to attract and generate innovation
Fintan Walton:
Hello and welcome to PharmaTelevision news review here in Melbourne, Australia. On this show, I have Douglas McCartney who is the Executive Director at STEM the Science, Technology, Energy and Mines at the Government of Manitoba, welcome.
Douglas McCartney:
It's s a pleasure to be here.
Fintan Walton:
As I said you are within a specific department within Manitoba within the Manitoba Government and your role is to promote innovation in a relatively small province within Canada called Manitoba?
Douglas McCartney:
That is correct.
Fintan Walton:
And you are based presumably in Winnipeg?
Douglas McCartney:
That is correct.
Fintan Walton:
Yeah. So what I am interested in Douglas McCartney is the model that Manitoba has adopted to try and attract and generate innovation into Manitoba and how are you doing that?
Douglas McCartney:
Model we've built is one based around collaboration not competition. And it's focused specifically about leveraging our unique assets, people, infrastructure capabilities as a means of building networks internationally with partners that share similar interest and wish to develop their economies around the same types of assets.
How the model is practically implemented
Fintan Walton:
So as I said you know Manitoba is a small relatively small province, 1.5 million people there, so you talk about collaboration and not competition but how do you actually practically implement that, how do you get the message across to other jurisdictions, other regions within the around the world to bring that collaborative model into actual play?
Douglas McCartney:
Largely it's focused around promoting the uniqueness that we have building relationships with those who are in similar situations, small populations somewhat isolated from the major markets that have an interest in partnering because they see that there is value in using those networks as a means of entering into those primary market.
The Minnesota and Manitoba collaboration
Fintan Walton:
So give me an example of where you've actually set up that sort of collaboration?
Douglas McCartney:
So we have a collaboration right now with the State of Minnesota in the United States. Minnesota is a neighbor to the South of Manitoba, it has a strong medical device and agro food industry, many of the large multinationals are based in that state. And they offer to us that industry expertise and entry point into their global markets for our smaller companies and research institutes that are involved in those types of activity, so we have gone forward and formalized relationships at various levels within the state both with that government and with the appropriate associations and those relationships have in turn allowed us to gain access to those key decision makers and offered us the ability to promote the value that we can bring to their activities and how best we can help to fill the needs of the that they require to address.
Advantages of collaborating with STEM
Fintan Walton:
There are lots of regions as you've know around the world who try and attract industry and attract commerce into their specific region, you've adopted a collaborative model how competitive can you place yourselves against other regions, what is the advantage of actually collaborating with Manitoba?
Douglas McCartney:
The advantages that we see a we are for the most part of soft landing within North America jurisdiction whereby there is commitment and desire to see innovation as a true driver of economic development, so there is involvement and support at all levels both within the public, private and academic sectors. So when we have interest around entry into other markets through the global connections that we have we were able to marshal those resources quite quickly and facilitate meetings with those appropriate key stakeholders on very short notice and at the level of most appropriate to their needs.
Fintan Walton:
When you talk about a soft landing obviously that could be in the form of being a facilitator but also do are there other incentives do you have any particular tax incentives�
Douglas McCartney:
Yes.
Fintan Walton:
Or other ways in which you can make that landing soft?
Douglas McCartney:
So we have things like a refundable R&D tax credit program. We have support programs that assist groups within Manitoba that want to do partnering activities with international stakeholders, we provide support to companies and institutions that are looking to engage groups around the world in terms of providing them with the capability to have those discussions and we actively are involved in promoting Manitoba at major events that allow us to put our name on that global map and present ourselves as a vehicle for an entry into the North American market.
How to get a STEM collaboration
Fintan Walton:
So if I was a biotechnology company either in Europe or Australia or Japan and I was thinking about going to North America what, what I need to do to get into Manitoba, would I contact you, would I?
Douglas McCartney:
That's using the way in which we have worked in the past, we have a centre the point of contact and then based upon the company in particular and the interest that they have then we marshal a team from across government and within the community to meet with the company and look at how best we can satisfy their needs and facilitate the appropriate discussions with other groups that best would meet their needs. And we have a number of delegations coming to Manitoba on a regular basis that we play that role with.
Where their strength lies
Fintan Walton:
Right. Now obviously you are a division or department is the science technology energy alliance
Douglas McCartney:
Yes.
Fintan Walton:
It's quite a broad base within the healthcare sector, where is your real strength is it in the medical devices or is it in new therapeutics, new drugs, or diagnostics which where would you see your strengths?
Douglas McCartney:
At the discovery stage the primary involvement in the health sector is in the medical device space with respect to the pharma industry we do have a robust industry when it comes to the manufacturing of various pharmaceuticals, so we do offer that contract manufacturing capacity as well.
STEM's goals for the future
Fintan Walton:
Okay. And in the end what is the vision? What do you see? What's the goal over the next few years for, for your department ?
Douglas McCartney:
The goal that we would like to pursue and are been actively pursuing for the last number of years is to position ourselves to that net global family and to be seen as a hub into far as sector such as industrial biotechnology, Nutraceutical, functional foods as a key facilitator and connective point with other jurisdictions around the world.
Fintan Walton:
Douglas McCartney, thank you very much indeed for coming on the show.
Douglas McCartney:
It's a pleasure to be here.
Douglas McCartney
Senior Executive Director Province of Manitoba
Douglas McCartney, Senior Executive Director, Science, Innovation and Business Development at Province of Manitoba. Douglas McCartney is the Senior Executive Director Science, Innovation and Business Development within the Department of Innovation, Energy and Mines, Province of Manitoba. He provides leadership and strategic direction to the Department and is the lead across government on innovation, research and technology policies and initiatives. Mr. Douglas McCartney is also responsible for the strategic development and management of initiatives which encourage economic growth of the province's life sciences, biotechnology, ICT and digital new media industries. Administration of the Manitoba Research and Innovations Fund, a multi-million dollar annual fund to build and strengthen the research and innovation capacity within the province is an additional responsibility.
Manitoba STEM
Manitoba is a Canadian prairie province with an area of 649,950 square kilometers (250,900 sq mi). It is bordered by the provinces of Ontario to the east and Saskatchewan to the west, the territories of Nunavut and Northwest Territories to the north, and the U.S. states of North Dakota and Minnesota to the south. It also has a saltwater coastline on Hudson Bay. Agriculture dominates the province's economy. Manitoba's Headquarters Winnipeg, Canada Area.