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A new German-Scandinavian life science network project


A new EU project in the program area Öresund-Kattegatt-Skagerak (ÖKS) has been approved.

Hanseatic League of Science (HALOS) will build a collaboration between Hamburg and South-West Scandinavia, bring together the four research facilities MAX IV, ESS, DESY and European XFEL, and create a centre for integrated, world-leading Life Science innovation and research.

3.6 million EUR

HALOS has a budget of 3.6 million EUR and enables further development of the ÖKS Interreg project ESS & MAX IV: Cross Border Science and Society. HALOS includes stakeholders from academia, regional development actors, research facilities and industry.


The HALOS collaboration, led by the Faculty of Medicine at Lund University, includes: Lund University, seven other academic research institutes in Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Germany, MAX IV and ESS in Sweden, German DESY, European XFEL, the Medicon Valley Alliance (MVA), industry in MedTech, BioTech and Pharma, Region Skåne, the Capital Region of Denmark and the City of Hamburg.

“The previous ESS & MAX IV: Cross Border Science and Society ÖKS Interreg project was very successful, not least for Life Science research. HALOS has a direct focus on Life Science and excellent potential for synergies in both research and between the MAX IV, ESS, DESY and European XFEL facilities. That is why we can now expand in this area and, together with German colleagues and partners, further develop what we call the ÖSK-Hamburg region into a world-leading Life Science centre,” says Kajsa M. Paulsson, researcher at Lund University and HALOS project manager.

A regional development project

In order to develop the cooperation with Hamburg and a globally competitive Life Science centre, HALOS includes a regional development project, where overall mapping, analyses and seminars with key players result in common key messages and strategies. The focus is on innovation and so-called ‘tech transfer’, researcher mobility and linking business more closely with research facilities.

“Combining the complementary facilities DESY, European X-Fel and MAX IV, ESS creates synergy effects and a globally unique infrastructure region with incredible opportunities for research in Life Science. The extensive business partnership also plays a key role in advancing skills in the private sector as well as creating networks between the private sector and researchers. Ideas from the corporate world will also be highlighted and incorporated by various forums, in order to create opportunities for working together on important and major societal challenges. We are happy and feel confident that HALOS will make a big difference,” says professor Erik Renström, dean at the Faculty of Medicine at Lund University and chairman of HALOS.

Specifically focus on the Life Science area

The main part of the project will build expertise on using FEL light, synchrotron light, neutrons and electron applications in Life Science. The subproject will contain 41 six-month projects according to a model tested, with very good results, in the previous Interreg project ESS & MAX IV: Cross Border Science and Society. In HALOS, the model is developed further to include additional technologies, link more closely with business and specifically focus on the Life Science area.

Image: Bird’s eye view of ESS