Scotland’s Life Sciences: Enabling an Environment for Growth

Enabling businesses to grow and attract the right talent is essential for the life sciences sector


Scotland has always had talented people at the forefront of the life sciences sector making life-changing discoveries for the benefit of mankind. From Alexander Fleming and the discovery of penicillin to John Mallard developer of the MRI body scanner, we have continued to push the envelope and make significant contributions to the scientific community.

Now is the time to have a clear focus on the commercial opportunities that can benefit the Scottish economy by attracting the best life science companies and talent to Scotland. Not only do we have to attract and retain the right people and companies, we also need to nurture the talent and businesses we already have in Scotland, enabling them to reach their full potential. This means we have to make it easier for small companies to scale up to become larger and employ more people. Being able to support small business to grow quickly and effectively is essential for improved economic outcome for the sector and for Scotland.

Our strategy is to make Scotland attractive to investors looking to make significant, long-term investments in Scotland’s life science industry. Scaling-up is the name of the game. We want investors to see the opportunities here, created by having the best talent and the best business environment possible for life sciences companies to be successful. High-value jobs in life sciences make a significant contribution to the economy of Scotland and the innovation that takes place in the industry once adopted by the NHS in Scotland can have a wider benefit for the population as a whole.

From school pupils to PhD students, our schools and universities need to feed the life sciences talent pipeline to carry the sector forward and grow towards its goal of generating £8 billion by 2025. The Scottish Government recently launched their new strategy for STEM subjects and continued support from the Scottish Government, highlighting the importance of STEM subjects will enable the growth of our sector for years to come.

We’re lucky that Scotland is one of the best places in the world to live and work. Let’s make the business environment available for Scottish life sciences companies the best in the world too.


By Ken Sutherland, Business Environment strategy-lead for Life Sciences Scotland

Book your ticket to our Life Sciences Conference – A vision for Life Sciences in Scotland: Accelerating growth, diving innovation here.