Published: 12-07-2011 00:00 | Updated: 07-07-2014 14:35

Karolinska Institutet's President is participating in this year's Transatlantic Week held in the Congress in Washington DC

Karolinska Institutet's President Harriet Wallberg-Henriksson is participating in the Transatlantic Week 2011 in Washington DC this week. The meeting, organized for the second consecutive year by The Transatlantic Strategy Forum is a forum for thorough discussions on issues of the future affecting both the U.S. and Europe. Participants are representatives from the U.S. Congress, advisors to President Obama, the EU Parliament, academia and industry.

President Harriet Wallberg-Henriksson is invited to participate in two panel discussions. The first – Healthcare Innovation: Can a global approach cut costs and improve health? – is designed to identify areas where increased cooperation between the continents can promote development. The second session – Research and Innovation roundtable – deals with the importance of innovation to promote economic development in society.

– I am very honored to attend this meeting as a representative of academia in Sweden and Europe, says Harriet Wallberg-Henriksson. In the two panels that I participate in, I can contribute with the Swedish and European perspective in health care and communicate our experience in research and innovation. The meeting is also a unique opportunity to listen to the experiences of others, which will have great value to me and the Karolinska Institutet.

– My contributions will among others concern the topic of ageing. This is an important area where new partnerships between U.S. and Europe could lead to faster progress. The big challenge is to transform the health care sector at the same rate as the disease panorama is changing because of the ageing population. In Europe in 2030 one fourth of the population will be older than 65 years; in 2000 it was only 15 percent. Here is a great need of new ideas and innovations.

The meeting is held at Capitol Hill, the U.S. Congress building, and is opened by the Speaker of the House John Boehner. Other U.S. participants are John Holdren, President Obama's Assistant for Science and Technology Policy, and Phil Gingrey, a member of the House of Representatives' Energy and Commerce Committee. Participants from Europe and EU are, among others, Judith Merkies, member of the European Parliament's Committee on Industry, Transportation, Research and Energy (ITRE), Professor Alexander von Gabain, co-founder of the vaccine company Intercell AG and the new Chairman-Elect of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology, and John Wood, Chairman of the European Research Area Board.