Ep.1 #Biompact Silicon Valley w./ Renne T. Williams Ph.D
An interview with a scientist; working with Biotechnology, located in the Silicon Valley.
WHY this interview?
I am writing a book to inspire anyone to dream big and impact the world. I am conducting a series of interviews in many different fields (biotech, social science, entrepreneurship) to gather data about, how and why they should care. The book will be about 1. Purpose and Motivation; 2. Skills for the 21st Century 3. Technology and Science.
As Adam Ruben says about 2020 in the quote below – biotech raised attention. I took my role as a scientist seriously and tried to also spread the positivity and impact of science all around the world. I did 5 interviews and professionals working in the Silicon Valley who are daily involved with Biotech. Because 2020 was the year of Biotech; I started with biotech interviews; here an interview with Renne T. Williams Ph.D, who is working with a startup and with Jansen Pharmaceuticals.
” But the year also held some legitimately positive developments for the scientific community. Scientific concepts are now more widely known. Antibodies, antigens, PCR, convalescent plasma, control group, herd immunity—even when the public debates what these terms mean, at least they’re being discussed. Not only that, but more people now understand why our jobs are important. ” – Adam Ruben, Ph.D.
Questions I asked in this interview:
1. (1:00) Introduction / Why this interview / Why biotech?
2. (12:10) What is the problem you are trying to solve with your start-up?
Renee was trying to build software for analytical chemistry. People were doing a lot manually and writing values by hand. She couldn’t believe that even big pharma was doing it. What scientist are writing on paper is not always what is happening in the lab. Scientists spend too much time on calculations on paper. Automation of mass spectra to find molecules, metabolites etc. “ I wish I knew how to code, I could build that software myself”
3. (24:46) What is the biggest problem society is facing today where you think biotechnology could solve?
Making algae mainstream making barrels of algae oil, to power the university,
“ we can we take current technologies and fix problems we’ve created. “
4. (35:00) What would you say to young people to motivate them to study biotech.
- do things that are impactful
„ I want the challenge, I want to do things that are hard; buat least they will be impactful“
- Your first experience will very probably determine science or not. The teacher in high school is really important.
- The learning curve of science is hard
- « RoI » is low. You needed decades until you really make good money.
- In science, nothing happens fast
But you do science for meaning and freedom: you can work on so many different topics. Don‘t do just science, do also business, coding, „ when you‘re done and you come out, you‘re not just that one thing“ supplement your career with things that could be useful later.
5. (42:00) Dreaming Big is hard; because we don’t know where to start. What is your advice so people take the first step?
To know what you can Become, put yourself out there,
“ Enjoy the ride “
“Every time you go somewhere, be sure to learn ONE THING, not everything. ”
My favorite quote from the interview:
” You don’t study science for money; you study science for meaning ”
Episode 2 is coming; with Thomas Herget, head of the innovation lab at Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany
Any questions? Send me an email: firstname.lastname@example.org