June 15, 2020

Just Published – Novo Nordisk Foundation’s Annual Impact Report 2019

“the greatest breakthroughs often occur when there is room for having great ambitions, collaborations and thinking new ideas”

(Novo Nordisk Foundation, 2020)

The Novo Nordisk Foundation has just published its Annual Impact Report 2019 detailing scientific outcomes and societal outcomes beyond science resulting from the foundation’s grant activities over the last year. This comprehensive report highlights the sheer breadth of outputs resulting from grants on research, innovation, patient care, and humanitarian causes funded by the Foundation and their impact on society. To read the full report see their website.

Increased Investment in Science and Society

Since 2014 the Foundation has invested 3 billion Euros in science and society. Investment in grant amounts has increased fivefold between 2014 and 2019. In fact, the Foundation’s contribution to total public sector research investment in Denmark has increased to 9.5% in 2019 (which equates to 22% of public research spending within biomedical and health sciences). Historically, grant funding has been focused on physiological, endocrinological and metabolic research. However, looking forward (2019-2023) there will be a wider scope of projects to encompass additional fields in medical science. 

Long-Term and Interdisciplinary View

The Novo Nordisk Foundation supports a long-term strategic and interdisciplinary view on research “since the greatest breakthroughs often occur when there is room for having great ambitions, collaborations and thinking new ideas” (Novo Nordisk Foundation, 2020).
The Researchfish platform, which Novo Nordisk Foundation has been using since 2015, has facilitated the systematic monitoring of the wide range of activities of grant recipients and the results of their work. By collecting data on multiple outputs – more than just publications – the foundation has evidenced impressive results in this 2019 report and highlighted important linkages and collaborations.

  • 4100 jobs generated in science (2019)
  • 300,000 people engaged in outreach activities (2019)
  • 28% of grants include outreach activities (2019)
  • 22,000 people reached by research-based education activities (2019)
  • 11 new spinouts (2019)
  • 126 medical interventions and products (2014-2019)
  • 305 contributions to policy and practice (2015-2019)
  • 48 commercial products linked to foundation-funded journals published (1994-2019)
  • 126 distinct patent documents (2014-2019)
  • 2800 publications (61% with industry co-authorship) (2019)

Combining Tools & Sources

By combining data from Researchfish and the Danish Centre for Studies in Research and Research Policy the Foundation has been able to measure the citation impact of publications resulting from their grant funding and identify the number of journal articles distributed by grant.  The results make for very interesting reading.

  • The Foundation’s journal articles are amongst the world’s top 1% and top 10% within their field and year and this has increased substantially in the past 10 years
  • 23% of journal articles published are amongst the top 10% most frequently cited in the world (2015-17)
  • Articles within endocrinology and metabolism rank 1.9 times the world average citation impact score within the field

Novo Nordisk Foundation’s goal is to improve lives through better health, education, and the development of a knowledge-based sustainable society. By collecting and analyzing data of outcomes from grants the foundation is able to promote research and innovation and ensure that funds are allocated efficiently across initiatives and scientific fields.

Novo Nordisk Foundation has also released a video highlighting the results of the 2019 annual impact report which you can watch here.