Director of Core Facilities and Services
The EMBL model for Core Facilities has developed a first-rate reputation in the European life sciences community. The Core Facilities contribute significantly to internal and external training courses and workshops, often in collaboration with industrial partners. Moreover, institutions in member states frequently seek our advice and guidance in setting up their own core facilities and services to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of their scientific research.
EMBL’s Core Facilities play a crucial role in enabling scientists to achieve ambitious research goals in a cost effective way. Following the establishment of a small set of facilities in 2001, the support of EMBL Council has enabled significant expansion, with the development of a number of high-level support teams that help focus diverse sets of expertise and multiple expensive technologies on specific biological problems. Currently, facilities cover the following areas: Advanced Light Microscopy, Chemical Biology, Electron Microscopy, Flow Cytometry, Genomics, Protein Expression and Purification, and Proteomics. In line with EMBL’s mission to provide services to Member States, Core Facilities are open to both internal and external scientists, who benefit significantly from our contributions and advice and are able to conduct research at and beyond normal state-of-the-art.
Core Facilities are staffed by technology experts who focus entirely on service provision, delivering technologies to be used in research projects designed and run by others. Each is run by a Head of Facility who is responsible for daily operations and ensuring high user satisfaction. Close attention is given to the delivery of quality services, fast reaction times to user demands, affordable prices and the complete integration of Core Facilities with the scientific objectives of EMBL.
Such attributes are enhanced by a user committee, which consists of representatives of EMBL’s research units. The committee helps to ensure that support activities are tailored to the demands of the research community, supports the introduction of new services, helps to define future strategies and provides valuable feedback on current operations.
In line with EMBL staff turnover rules, a number of our technical employees as well as Heads of Core Facilities have left for pastures new and in the past year we have welcomed a number of new staff. Yannick Schwab has replaced Claude Antony as Head of the Electron Microscopy Core Facility; Alexis Perez has taken over as Head of the Flow Cytometry Core Facility from Andrew Riddell; and Alan Sawyer, former Head of the Monoclonal Antibody Core Facility has left EMBL to start his own business and we have now closed this in-house activity. We wish all great success in their new ventures. Core Facilities will be externally reviewed (SAC and external experts) for the third time in 2014.
Director, Core Facilities and Services