Biological innovation relates to using living systems to improve and sustain life and life quality. It can be seen in agriculture - ranging from plant breeding to agronomy to natural resource management. It can be seen in public health - through improved knowledge, and tools for management of nutrition, environment and medical practices.
Biological innovation is not just about biotechnology, not even mostly about biotechnology, nor is it just about low cost pharmaceuticals. It's about every human manipulation of living systems.
Humans, like all living things, require food and water, and a sustainable means of providing them. The greatest impact on human health and life quality is from inadequate quantity and quality of these.
There are almost 800 million people who are chronically malnourished. This dwarfs the number with serious infectious disease. Malnourishment is the single greatest cause of poor health and untimely death.
Food and fiber production is also economically foundational. 70% of the developing world relies on primary production for its economy. There are nearly two billion people who survive on the equivalent of less than two dollars a day. The impact on society and our environment from these inequities is unimaginable.
The squandered human and intellectual capital is unacceptable.
Biological innovation is at the very heart of sustainable and socially equitable development. The potential creativity and commitment that can be empowered through combining the new tools of informatics, communications and transformative biological understanding and technologies is extraordinary. The goal of the BiOS Initiative is to forge new mechanisms to empower biological innovations by and for those most neglected in the high capital world, without turning our backs on the beauty and potential of science and technology.