To promote innovation that delivers improved health, productivity and economic growth to the Asia-Pacific, APEC has launched the 2012 ASPIRE Prize which will honor a young scientist whose work has made an outstanding contribution to bioscience, as evidenced by scholarly publication and demonstrated by partnerships with regional colleagues.

The 2012 theme, “Health Innovation,” was announced in Moscow and builds on APEC’s 2012 priority to actively foster advances among member economies in areas such as health that improve the quality of people’s lives, according to APEC Secretariat Executive Director Ambassador Muhamad Noor.

“We look forward to another set of high-caliber nominees who, together, demonstrate the robust scientific collaboration taking place across the APEC region that drive growth, Ambassador Noor said.”

APEC views innovation-based economic development as crucial for members’ sustainable growth.

“Innovation is essential to fulfilling APEC’s 21st century vision of a dynamic and prosperous region built on the development and application of new ideas,” said Dr. Nares Damrongchai, Lead Shepherd for APEC’s Industrial Science and Technology Working Group, the forum that issues the APEC Science Prize for Innovation, Research and Education (ASPIRE).

“We continue to actively support APEC member economies’ capacity to both generate and gain from next generation advancements by encouraging widespread access to and increases in knowledge-sharing about industrial science and technology.”

The annual ASPIRE prize promotes extensive interaction between the region’s universities, research centers and the business community to foster cutting-edge ideas and technologies needed for more robust, integrated and sustainable economic activity.

“The incredible innovations in biochemistry, bioengineering, biogenetics and molecular biology which are being created by the scientists of the APEC region address key health problems and as a result increase performance and efficiency in the work place,” noted Dr. Svetlana Axelrod, APEC Health Working Group Chair.

“Today’s innovations are also helping to tackle public health threats that are very real and have great economic impact on the Asia-Pacific region and the rest of the world,” Axelrod added.

APEC continues to actively address regional and global health epidemics through measures that support innovation and cooperative economic work programs that reflect the multi-sectoral impact of such health threats.

Each of APEC’s 21 member economies can nominate one individual under 40 years of age up to the submission deadline of 14 May 2012.

For more information on submitting nominees, please contact Mr. Luis Enrique Vertiz, APEC Industrial Science and Technology Working Group Program Director, APEC Secretariat, at lev@apec.org.

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For additional information, please contact David Hendrickson +65 9371 8901 at drh@apec.org or Michael Chapnick +65 9647 4847 at mc@apec.org.

More details about APEC’s 2012 priorities and initiatives for the year can be found on www.apec.org or www.apec2012.ru

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