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A roundup of developments in corporate social responsibility (CSR) and sustainability from the bio/pharmaceutical industry, its suppliers, and other public and private organizations.
The 100,000 Jobs Mission announced that its coalition companies have collectively hired 51,835 veterans through 2012. The coalition, which includes Bristol-Myers Squibb, Johnson & Johnson, Merck & Co., and Thermo Fisher Scientific, among others; was launched in March 2011 by 11 private-sector companies, and is currently more than halfway to its goal of hiring at least 100,000 US military veterans by 2020.
Boehringer Ingelheim and Ashoka Changemakers, a community of action that connects social entrepreneurs around the world to share ideas, are launching Transforming Health Systems: Gamechanging Business Models, an online competition to discover innovative business models that are solving critical problems in health systems around the world. Transforming Health Systems also seeks business models that confront problems in emerging markets where governments, businesses, and nonprofit organizations often lack the resources or commitment to serve communities in need. Winners will receive awards totaling $85,000 plus support from Boehringer Ingelheim to help advance their business models. They will be matched with Boehringer Ingelheim’s local country offices, and will be able to explore the potential for partnerships or further support. Individuals, organizations, or partnerships are eligible to enter from now until Apr. 10, 2013, at www.changemakers.com/healthbiz.
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has formed a joint venture with the India-based vaccines company Biological E to research and develop a six-in-one combination pediatric vaccine to help protect children in India and other developing countries from certain infectious diseases. If the vaccine is approved, it will combine GSK’s injectable polio vaccine and Biological E’s pentavalent vaccine for diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, hepatitis B and hemophilus influenza Type B. The vaccine is intended to reduce the number of injections for children and to improve compliance with immunization schedules. Space at local storage facilities would also be freed up because the vaccine is intended to be a fully liquid, ready-to-use formulation with no need for additional ingredients or materials. Phase I development is expected to start in the next two years. Each company will have a 50% stake in the joint venture and will bear the development costs. A small cash investment will be made by both companies to cover the start-up costs and further development costs will be split equally.