The life sciences industry’s workforce is critical to developing and delivering important new treatments to patients in need.

Parexel Academy Introduces New Collaboration to Develop Japan’s Biopharmaceutical Workforce of the Future

4.17.18 -

By Sonja Wilkens

April 17, 2018


The life sciences industry’s workforce is critical to developing and delivering important new treatments to patients in need. Having an educated, skilled and qualified base of the best minds to bring experience, expertise and innovative thinking to the drug development process is essential to move the industry forward.

To this end, in 2001 Parexel launched the Parexel® Academy, a training institute specialized in the field of clinical research, to help develop a robust talent pool and pipeline of highly qualified candidates to serve Parexel, our biopharmaceutical clients, and the industry as it grows and evolves. The Academy and its unsurpassed global scale of university partnerships around the world provides tailored, meaningful and effective education and training through seminars, workshops, academic programs and conferences. With over 5,000 graduates, Parexel Academy has a successful track record of developing a talent pipeline across the globe.

While there is a global need for skilled clinical research staff, the Asia-Pacific region in particular has experienced an increasingly high demand for workers as its biopharmaceutical industry has grown in recent years. Countries such as Japan have experienced this first-hand, as pharmaceutical research and development expenditures in the country have nearly doubled since 2000. The country has continued to introduce initiatives that support the industry, including new legislation to accelerate the development and approval of novel medicines. As the country’s drug development industry grows, so does its need for qualified candidates with clinical research and clinical trial management expertise.

To address this need in the region and to continue the advancement of its mission, Parexel Academy recently partnered with Meiji Pharmaceutical University (MPU), a private pharmacy and science university in Japan, to provide a new joint program for clinical research and clinical trial management. Together, Parexel and MPU will provide a leading curriculum that is current and in line with today’s evolving industry requirements.

The four-week accredited program has several attributes designed to train candidates who will be highly qualified to contribute to the today’s clinical research. First, the curriculum is developed for students who possess an existing background in science and pharmacy, allowing them to focus on and develop the specific skills and knowledge needed for clinical research and trial management. As the students are in their fifth year of their six-year science or pharmacy degree programs, Parexel Academy and MPU can educate them about a potential career path in clinical research or trial management and prepare them for success in this field.

The curriculum, developed by Parexel, is uniquely structured and based on current global clinical trial standards and practices (such as ICH-GCP), enabling students to learn and apply their clinical research skills and knowledge not only in Japan, but in a global environment that has diverse regulatory requirements. In addition, the courses are taught by qualified Parexel Academy lecturers from renowned universities - all actively engaged in clinical research - whose expertise, years of relevant experience, and knowledge of latest industry insights enrich the learning experience. Finally, the program is taught in English, allowing students to practice the language so they are prepared to participate in global management discussions when they enter the industry.

One of the keys to the success of the drug development industry is continuing to educate, train and invest in the next generation. By providing students with the right training and resources, we can enable them to not only contribute to and succeed in the global pharmaceutical industry, but ultimately help the advancement of important new treatments of the future.


Parexel Academy’s joint program with MPU for clinical research and clinical trial management would not have been possible without Shogo Nakamori, Corporate Vice President, Asia-Pacific and General Manager, Parexel Japan, and the Academy’s esteemed lecturers, Dr. Dagmar Peitsch and Valerie Howarth-Gründer.

Sonja Wilkens

Director, Parexel Academy Operations

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