In the centre of an innovation ecosystem
Lund – City of Innovation
Lund has been a prominent innovation cluster for over a thousand years, with its roots dating back to the Iron Age settlement of Uppåkra, located in the south of Lund. Uppåkra, active between 100 BC and 1000 AD, revealed archaeological discoveries of surgical instruments used by doctors during that time. As the city center shifted to its present location in Lund in the late 10th century, Lund Cathedral was constructed in the early 12th century, serving as a religious and scientific center during the Middle Ages and contributing significantly to higher education.
In 1666, Lund University, the second oldest university in present-day Sweden, was founded, followed by the establishment of a university hospital in the vicinity in 1768. Today, Lund University is one of the largest universities in the Nordic region and ranks among the top 100 universities globally. The university boasts an international profile, with partner universities in approximately 70 countries. It invests over SEK 5 billion annually in research across nine faculties. Lund University offers a wide range of programs and courses, emphasizing interdisciplinary and cutting-edge research in areas such as climate and environmental science, nanoscience, diseases like cancer and diabetes, and IT and mobile communications.
Lund University and Skåne University Hospital form a cohesive entity just north of Lund Cathedral. They are closely connected to two prominent science parks: Ideon Science Park, established in 1983 and currently one of the largest science and business parks in Northern Europe, employing 10,000 individuals in 400 businesses, and Medicon Village, founded in 2012 and now the largest life science-focused science park in Scandinavia, housing 2,800 employees in 180 businesses. These multifaceted pillars make Lund a unique innovation district that combines culture, city life, and research within a compact radius of only 2 kilometers.
The future prospects are promising, with the presence of the Swedish national synchrotron laboratory, MAX IV, located a few kilometers north of Ideon. MAX IV has been operational since 2016, succeeding MAX-lab, which operated between 1987 and 2015. Additionally, a kilometer north of MAX IV lies the European Spallation Source (ESS), currently under construction and expected to begin operations in 2027. ESS, a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC), is a multidisciplinary research facility based on the world’s most powerful neutron source. Between MAX IV and ESS, Science Village is being developed as a new geographic area focused on materials research and housing facilities like Lund Nano Lab.
The Lund innovation ecosystem is built upon a distinguished history. Research and entrepreneurship are intertwined, and Lund has been the birthplace of game-changing innovations such as the Bluetooth wireless communication standard, the artificial kidney, the modern ventilator, and the “invisible” bicycle helmet with an airbag.
What sets Lund apart from other innovation districts is not only the presence of major scientific pillars coexisting within a close radius from the city center but also the vibrant innovative spirit that permeates the area. This unique combination attracts brilliant researchers, students, and entrepreneurs who are driven to make a positive impact on the world by turning bold ideas into reality.
Medicon Valley and the Greater Copenhagen area
Medicon Village is an integral part of Medicon Valley, one of Europe’s strongest life science clusters. It encompasses a dynamic ecosystem and a deep talent pool, supported by world-class life science universities and research infrastructure. With a competitive business environment and the renowned high quality of life in the Nordic region, Medicon Valley offers an attractive location for both businesses and individuals.
Situated in the Greater Copenhagen metropolitan area, Medicon Valley enjoys a convenient location. This metropolitan area spans eastern Denmark and the southernmost part of Sweden, with easy accessibility through Copenhagen Airport, serving 177 direct international destinations and catering to nearly 30.3 million passengers in 2019.
With 65,500 employees in the life science industry and 15,000 university life science researchers spread across nine universities in the Greater Copenhagen metropolitan area, Medicon Valley serves as the epicenter of Nordic life science.
The Nordic region is globally recognized for its innovation, and our life science ecosystem reflects this reputation. At Medicon Valley, we take pride in our rich life science heritage that spans over a century. Our pioneering spirit continues to attract numerous successful companies, including Atos Medical, BioGaia, Cellavision, Chr. Hansen, Ferring, Genmab, Hemocue, LEO Pharma, Lundbeck, McNeil, Novo Nordisk, Polypeptide and Probi. Additionally, we are proud to host several smaller innovative start-ups that contribute to the region’s development, such as Abliva, Clinical Microbiomics, Follicum, Guard Therapeutics, Idogen, and SNIPR Biome.
Medicon Valley in numbers
- 350+ biotech, medtech and pharma companies with local R&D
- 5 Global R&D pharmaceutical companies; Ferring, McNeil, Novo Nordisk, Lundbeck and LEO Pharma
- 65,500 employees in the private life science sector
- 9 life science universities with 35,300 life science students
- 15,000 life science researchers
- 6,000 life science and health related PhD students
- 7 science parks with a major focus on life science, (with a total of 1500 companies)
- 10 incubators
- 9 university hospitals (28 hospitals in total)
- New world-class research facilities ESS (European Spallation Source) & MAX IV
More information on Medicon Valley can be found on the Greater Copenhagen website.