Published: 08-03-2011 00:00 | Updated: 26-11-2013 10:24

A new director of the Innovation Office

[PRESS RELEASE 2011-03-08] Bo-Ragnar Tolf has been appointed as director of the Innovation Office at the Swedish medical university, Karolinska Institutet. He hopes to be able to use his many years of experience in the pharmaceuticals industry to stimulate an ethos of innovation and to create new collaboration between Karolinska Institutet and the business community.

Bo-Ragnar TolfPhoto: Stefan Zimmerman

The innovation system at Karolinska Institutet has been built up through many years and consists of a number of components, together creating a complete system for the conversion of research results into real benefit for patients, the healthcare system and society.

"The Innovation Office is a major player that is coupled with the existing innovation system. It has been possible to establish the office as a result of the latest initiative by the government into innovation, and it will be possible to bring more ideas to harbour now that Bo-Ragnar Tolf is at the rudder", says Rune Fransson, Director for Innovation and Infrastructure, and coordinator of the innovation system.

Bo-Ragnar Tolf has long been a major figure in the pharmaceuticals industry. His previous appointments include nine years as managing director at the pharmaceuticals company ACADIA Pharmaceuticals, and work at AstraZeneca and Kabi Pharmacia Therapeutics. Most recently he has been running his own consultancy. He is also a member of the board of three companies within Karolinska Development.

"It feels as if I'm coming full circle, now that I can work with the beginning of the innovation process. It will be enormously exciting to try to coax entrepreneurship from students and scientists at Karolinska Institutet", says Bo-Ragnar Tolf.

"The most rewarding aspect will be to see knowledge and research results arise from work at the institute leading to positive benefits."

The Innovation Office at Karolinska Institutet started its operations on 1 November 2010. It is charged with inspiring, informing and guiding scientists and students to innovations.

"Karolinska Institutet has a tradition of working with innovation. I am lucky to have such amazingly skilled colleagues, and I'm sure that with my experience from the business world we will be able to form a powerful team", says Bo-Ragnar Tolf.

The innovation system at Karolinska Institutet consists of:

  • The Innovation Office: Offers inspirational activities, advice and guidance within the development of ideas and issues related to innovation, and coordinates and participates in Swedish and international collaborations with the business world.
  • Unit for Bioentrepreneurship: Offers education and research within innovation and entrepreneurship, and forms an academic unit within Karolinska Institutet.
  • Karolinska Institutet Innovation AB: Offers professional advice and project management with a focus on market analysis, patenting issues and business development. The company can also offer initial financial support in the early phases of commercialisatio
  • Karolinska Development AB: Manages one of the largest portfolios of life science companies in Europe. The company can use its unique business model to guide cost-effective commercialisation of world-class innovations in the life sciences.
  • Karolinska Institutet Science Park AB: Offers an attractive and creative environment for growth through premises close to the university, courses, networks and service.

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