A Life Science Building ensuring Norway's research and innovation capacity
The government aims to co-locate parts of the research activities at Oslo University Hospital in the Life Science Building.
In August, the University of Oslo was informed that the government would not compensate Statsbygg's cost overruns in connection with the Life Science Building. Various scenarios have been worked on regarding further development of a building that is central to the evolvement of both UiO and society as a whole.
Three main alternatives have been considered:
1. To build as originally planned. This would require the government to increase the economic frame of the project, and to compensate for the cost overruns.
2. A significantly scaled-down building for UiO with cuts of up to 30 percent of the building, which would not satisfy neither societal goals nor impact goals.
3. A partnership with the South-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority/Oslo University Hospital that would give UiO larger areas while at the same time fulfilling both societal goals and impact goals.
Strenghten Norway's research and innovation capacity
The Government now aims for Oslo University Hospital to have a limited area in the building, and for the South-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority/Oslo University Hospital to take part in the financing of the building. In addition, this allows for a new construction phase. The building will now accommodate activities related to chemistry, pharmacy and life sciences, and enable a further development of an already strong interaction between UiO and OUS.
We are very happy with the government's decision. We have worked constructively and well with the South-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority, Oslo University Hospital, the Ministry of Education and Research, the Ministry of Health and Care Services, the Ministry of Local Government and Modernisation, the Ministry of Finance, and Statsbygg. We have found a creative, but professionally sound solution, ensuring the realisation of a building that is very important to Norway's research and innovation ability. I would like to extend a big thank you to the many UiO professionals who have worked very hard to shed light on all alternatives, thus contributing to the government being able to make this decision, says Svein Stølen, Rector at the University of Oslo.
Entering into partnership with Oslo University Hospital will strengthen the Life Science Building as a facility for extensive interdisciplinary collaboration and innovation activities, with the development of excellent research environments across disciplines, and as the heart of Norway's first innovation district, Oslo Science City, says Stølen.
Facts about the Life Science Building
The purpose of UiO´s commitment to life sciences and the Life Science Building is to connect different subjects and disciplines in order to understand life and life's processes. This will serve as an approach to solve challenges related to aging, disease, food production, biotechnology, and climate and environmental change. Life Sciences will bring together pharmacy, medicine and chemistry with research in biology, nano- and biotechnology, medical technology, big data, and artificial intelligence. Through professional convergence (merging of subject areas) and collaboration with both the business and public sector as well as Oslo University Hospital and innovation environments, new knowledge, innovation, industries and jobs will be developed. The building is very central to investments in the upcoming innovation district Oslo Science City.