In order to make Genopole® a truly world-class biocluster, it is necessary to create a real economical tissue with pleasant working conditions and true development opportunities.
In addition to the campus’s shared-use facilities and infrastructure, Genopole® has progressively established a range of services that are essential for growing the biopark’s activities and promoting dialogue between the various stakeholders.
Sharing skills & resources and leveraging expertise
BioSupport was created in 2005 on the initiative of several campus biotech companies and with support from Genopole®; it is a group of employers whose mission is to share administrative, financial and technical skills that would be too costly for individual companies (mainly start-ups) to fund full time. The group enables Genopole® portfolio companies to access high-level experts at an optimal quality/price ratio.
Today, BioSupport has recruited a full-time staff (an administrative and financial director, an assistant accountant, an IT engineer, a quality assurance expert and a legal affairs and contract manager) who share their time between 24 companies.
BioSupport members must pay an initial deposit and an annual membership fee. The member company is then invoiced monthly on the basis of the skills used and the time consumed.
- The Evry-Val d’Essonne REVE ultra-broadband network connects 14 of the area’s scientific sites. REVE can also be used by Genopole® campus companies and gives then very rapid access to genetics and genomics databases.
- An electronic library: in addition to the Genoscope Documentation Center and the University of Evry-Val d’Essonne Library, an electronic library has been available to the campus’ academic community since 2002. Via the COUPERIN academic consortium, Genopole® benefits from reduced-rate subscriptions to electronic journals from leading scientific publishers. Since January 1, 2008, Genopole® companies also access Elsevier’s ScienceDirect database, offering 2,754 electronic journals in the life science field (with full-text browsing from 1995 to the present for 1,065 of these).
Genocentre: the ultramodern Genocentre international convention center is located in the heart of the biopark. It opened in 2001 on the initiative of the French Muscular Dystrophy Association (AFM) and with financial support from Ile-de-France Regional Council and Essonne County Council. Its prime mission is to host colloquia, symposia and conventions related to genetic research. It features areas capable of seating up to 700 people, with a modular 220- to 700-seat amphitheatre (including 50 places for people with reduced mobility) and 7 modular meeting rooms.
- Computing services: in collaboration with BioSupport, Genopole® runs a computing service in response to demand from the biopark stakeholders (access to the fiber optic network, secure backups, server hosting and management in the machine room, e-mail and web hosting, VAN access, a business continuity plan, update management, optimal antivirus protection, etc.).
- A welcome desk for incoming researchers and students from outside the region is operated by the not-for-profit organization Science Accueil within the University of Evry-Val-d’Essonne since September 2008. Science Accueil’s mission is to facilitate the arrival and temporary residency (administrative aspects, accommodation, schooling, French courses, etc.) of incoming researchers, postgraduate students and visiting professors (whether French or foreign).
- Accommodation: thanks to its partners (the Evry Centre-Essonne urban community, the Telecom SudParis and the UEVE, Genopole® offers co-rental properties and studio flats in Evry town center.
Several projects are being planned:
- in collaboration with the AFM, an inter-company restaurant is being planned. The restaurant will serve up to 1,000 meals per day and provide an all-day cafeteria service.
- A Social, Cultural and Sports Staff Committee is being discussed, with a view to meeting the needs of employees whose employers do not have their own Staff Committees.
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