'The Department Must Be Sustainable Far into the Future' – University of Copenhagen

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04 October 2018

'The Department Must Be Sustainable Far into the Future'

Helle Waagepetersen was appointed acting head of department last January and has since 1 August held the position as head of department.

'There is no doubt that the research landscape and academia are changing, and if we want to survive we need to be attentive and look at whether there is anything we can do differently. As head of department it is my duty to make sure we create a department that is resistant and sustainable far into the future', says Helle Waagepetersen.

Helle Waagepetersen has always been interested in management and is propelled – both as a researcher and manager – by a wish to make a positive difference. She wants to strengthen the Department of Drug Design and Pharmacology in areas such as innovation, benefit to society, education and the cohesion of the department. At the same time, it is important to her that the department is a nice place to work.

'The coherence of the department can be improved, just as we can improve the connection between research and education. At the same time, we must be better at selling and promoting ourselves – both as regards research and study programmes. And we must be good at telling the outside world how we contribute to society, both with regard to education, research and innovation', she says.

Time to Develop the Pharmaceutical Area
In 2012 the Faculty of Pharmacology and SUND merged, and the Department of Drug Design and Pharmacology was established. The past five years the department and the other newly established departments, including the Department of Pharmacy, have probably been busy finding their identity at SUND. But according to Helle Waagepetersen, now it is time to work closer together and develop the pharmaceutical area together.

'We must make the pharmaceutical area strong for the future, and to do that we need to walk hand in hand. If we want to attract the most talented students and researchers, we need a strong brand, and that is something we can only do together', says Helle Waagepetersen, who also looks forward to cooperating with Head of the Department of Pharmacy Flemming Madsen on developing and branding the pharmaceutical area.

Helle Waagepetersen, aged 46, holds an MSc (pharm.) and PhD from the Danish University of Pharmaceutical Sciences. Helle Waagepetersen has been employed at UCPH since 2007, when the Danish University of Pharmaceutical Sciences merged with UCPH.

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