Collaborative approach needed to tackle megatrends - BASF

27 January 2011 17:15  [Source: ICIS news]

PARIS (ICIS)--The chemical industry needs to work in tandem with other sectors in order to tackle global “megatrends” such as changing demographics, an official with Germany-based chemical major BASF said on Thursday.

Hans-Ulrich Engel, a member of BASF’s board of executive directors, said a more sophisticated, solutions-based approach is required to effectively tackle the challenges facing the world.

Speaking on the sidelines of the launch of the International Year of Chemistry in Paris, France, Engel said: “It’s no longer the single molecule that makes a difference. It is solutions that will play a role in tackling megatrends. We need to work in interdisciplinary teams, not just chemical teams.”

He singled out biotechnology, nanotechnology, energy management systems and photovoltaics as key areas of market growth for the chemical industry in relation to megatrends.

According to Engel, a key megatrend relates to “population growth and an aging population”.

“This will lead to higher demand in areas like health and nutrition, mobility, energy management and communication. These are all excellent growth areas for the chemical industry. We should see overall chemical industry growth higher than GDP,” Engel said.

He said it will be important to create an environment that is positive about science and innovation.

“All stakeholders, whether in science, technology, or society at large, need to understand the contribution that science makes.”

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By: Will Beacham
+44 20 8652 3214

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