The 9 January speeches from professors Gérard Saillant, ICM President, and Alexis Brice, ICM Director-General, at the ICM.
This is an especially important year: 2017 is the year we will finally have a single contact on the scientific, administrative and financial levels at the ICM. We’ve achieved a certain homogeneity at the Institute.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you, and once again I wish you a very happy new year.
When we think of the ICM, what comes to mind is the Institute’s diversity with over 40 countries represented. The men and women who work there have a diverse range of expertise and experience. The wealth this represents on a professional and human level is incredible.
Our ability to meet upcoming challenges will draw from this diversity.
Albert Einstein was famous for saying that “creativity is intelligence having fun”.
We must keep innovating, breaking barriers, developing our creativity, working together, and we must keep communicating.
Researchers, engineers, technicians, doctors, students, platform and support staff: they all come together here with the same mission to serve knowledge, science, medicine and the common good. Remember our motto: “search, find, cure”.
This diversity has paved the way for major breakthroughs, publications, three prestigious certifications: IHU, Carnot Institute, Center of Excellence on Neurodegenerative Diseases.
We had this year the prestigious Cristal medal of the CNRS.
The public authorities, our guardianships, as well as our benefactors and donors have placed their renewed trust in us. I count on the women and men working at the Institute, as well as our organisation, to help meet our goals.
We would like to remind you of what we did in 2016, an illustration of the ICM’s vitality, attractiveness, the quality of its talents, its demanding policy, and unique ecosystem. Since last year, our financial books are balanced, with a growing budget.
We set up a scientific and medical steering committee that brings management and research teams together and is involved in Institute policy. We also did some background work to develop a scientific and medical roadmap, the Institute’s strategic plan, that we follow closely and was approved by National Research Agency experts.
The ICM also represents over 500 publications, Carnot 3 certification, and we also welcomed a new team, led by Bassem Hassan, and three new startups. We had the opportunity to see the first prototypes of the Living Lab, and the launch of 15 projects within the Big Brain Theory Program.
2017 is set to be a busy year, with PI retreat and the arrival of two new research teams. I urge you to stay focused, to show continued excellence and continued ability to produce knowledge and major breakthroughs.
Several large-scale projects lie ahead for this coming year. For starters, the arrival of new teams and new talent: Nicolas Renier has already joined us and Nelson Rebola will arrive over the course of the first semester. We will also be launching a BBT-type call for tender, first semester 2017, for collaborative, multidisciplinary and innovative projects that will bring our research teams and platforms together.
We also wish to develop clinical research, especially early-stage research, with results that can be used for patients. Our goal is to become an essential partner in innovative therapy development.
Another important program for the Institute is in the field of neuroinformatics, a particularly unifying project as it will lead to collaboration between engineers and researchers from research teams, platforms, and support services. Our goal is to become a main player in precision medicine stemming from big data.
We are also a training center, in support of trans-disciplinary learning. We are going to launch an international Masters program in the field of neurodegenerative illnesses, strengthen the branding of our Brain to Market summer school, and will welcome prestigious visiting professors.
We will also be promoting research with the startup 2.0 program to make entrepreneurship easier for ICM researchers and engineers. We established a partnership with the Station F, representing the greatest incubator in the world, in which the ICM will play an important role in biomedical innovation. All of this will give us great visibility among the major players in the field of innovation.
In 2017, we must succeed together. We must succeed with respect for each other, with shared ambitions, in the greater interest of research and to support patients, fellow citizens, as well as progress and innovation for society at large.
We wish each and every one of you success in your personal projects, peace of mind in carrying out your missions and responsibilities, and renewed confidence in the future of our field and this “home” of ours. We wish you the very best for this beautiful new year.