Our Dedication to Communities and the Environment

 

 

The core of Biogen’s philosophy – Caring Deeply – can be seen in the ways we engage with the communities where we work, as well as our commitment to address environmental challenges.

 

 


 

 

Community engagement

The Biogen Foundation supports access to science education for diverse populations and to essential human services for children and their families. The Foundation is dedicated to inspiring the next generation of scientists through support of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education. Since 2002 the Foundation has supported bringing more than 55,000 middle and high school students into Biogen’s two Community Labs for a hands-on introduction to science. In 2019 54% of the students that participated in the Community Labs were from underrepresented and/or low-income household groups, Alazar Ayele, head of the Cambridge Community Lab, was honored as one of The National Minority Quality Forum’s 2019 40 Under 40 Leaders in Minority Health. These honorees represent the next generation of thought leaders in reducing health disparities.


In 2019 the Foundation’s STAR program completed its first full year. The program – which stands for Science, Teacher support, Access and Readiness – is designed to strengthen and support the educational landscapes in Cambridge and Somerville, Massachusetts. It aims to increase access to STEM resources and opportunities for middle and high school students most underrepresented in STEM college or career pathways. Learn more about how the program is already creating future science stars in our communities in its first full year.

 

 

 

 

Through a collaboration with Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Neurology, the Biogen Foundation launched the MGH Youth Neurology Education and Research Program, a groundbreaking partnership that aims to foster interest and access in neurology for historically underrepresented youth. The Biogen Foundation and MGH Neurology aim to Inspire, Equip and Empower underrepresented youth to pursue neurology and neuroscience careers through this program.


In addition to STEM activities, our employees aim to be a positive presence in a variety of volunteerism efforts, such as Care Deeply Day. Since 2011 we have set aside this annual global day of volunteer service enabling all employees to have an impact in their local communities. In 2019 more than 3,000 employees volunteered in 30+ countries. Learn more about our Community Engagement efforts or the Biogen Foundation.

 

 


 

 

Stakeholder engagement

Throughout the year we engage a variety of external stakeholders to ensure we understand and incorporate their perspectives and input into our decision-making. Stakeholder groups we engage include:

  • Biotech/Pharmaceutical Industry Associations
  • Community and Non-Governmental Organizations
  • Government Bodies and Regulators
  • Healthcare Organizations & Professionals
  • Investors and Venture Capital
  • Local and Regional Business Associations
  • Patient Advocacy Organizations
  • Universities, Research Institutions and Centers of Higher Learning

 

 

 

 

Environmental sustainability

Our commitment to or our communities includes recognizing our responsibility as stewards of the natural environment. We utilize a science-based approach to reduce our environmental footprint. Since 2014 we’ve taken responsibility for our impact on climate change by sourcing 100% of our electricity from renewable sources, driving efficiency initiatives internally and working with our suppliers. Green chemistry is embraced throughout our company, continually exploring new ways to make our drug development processes safer, more efficient and more sustainable while also saving resources. Learn more about our commitment to Green Chemistry.


In 2019 we implemented several initiatives to raise awareness of environmental impact as well as steps that employees can take, both big and small, including:

  • Sustainable Cafeteria Campaign: Conducted an awareness campaign to drive down plastic usage at our Baar, Switzerland site. Sourced from a local company, we supplied free reusable bags for items such as veggies and fruits that are made from recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET). We also partnered with reCIRCLE, to implement a reusable system for take-away dishes at our Switzerland cafeterias with boxes and coffee cups that could be taken away, returned, washed and reused, with the ultimate objective of supporting a circular economy.
  • LED project: Replaced 8,000 fluorescent light fixtures in the Cambridge campus with energy efficient LED fixtures reducing our electricity usage per year by over 2,000 MWh and spend on electricity and lamps by $400,000 (the average U.S. household uses approximately 10 MWh according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration).

We aim to be a catalyst for positive change by encouraging our partners to adopt responsible policies leading to both improved environmental and business performance. We are currently working to incorporate these considerations into our procurement strategy and will provide an update next year.


Biogen respects and complies with all local, regional, national and international environmental laws and norms in both their letter and spirit. Learn more about our approach to environmental sustainability and our climate change position.