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The aim of CYSS is to promote the creation of a dynamic network in the synthetic biology field. As a part of the larger synthetic biology ecosystem it actively participates in organising events such as symposia, panel discussions and courses.
CYSS operates BioGarage at Aalto University Design Factory - a low threshold GMO-laboratory for multidisciplinary interactions. It provides students, researchers and startups an opportunity to collaborate, gain synbio skills and create new ideas, with a possibility to mature them to industrially relevant solutions or even generation of new businesses.
Since the spring 2020 BioGarage has welcomed many student groups and hosted fascinating projects combining synthetic biology with other disciplines.
Another central mission of CYSS is to engage in societal debate about the possibilities and ethics of synthetic biology and to emphasise its role as an essential part of the truly sustainable bioeconomy. In addition to that the research community also encourages young scientists to become courageous and responsible developers of sustainable solutions for the future. CYSS is part of the Synbio Powerhouse, an innovation ecosystem for strengthening biotechnology capabilities and business development in Finland through synthetic biology.
Steering Group and funding
CYSS is led by Prof. Merja Penttilä (VTT and Aalto University), who is the Chair of the workgroup, which additionally consists of Dr. Jussi Jäntti, team leader (VTT) and Prof. Markus Linder (Aalto University).
Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation granted Professor Merja Penttilä and the workgroup funding for The Centre for Young Synbio Scientists (CYSS) for the years 2019-2021. The funding will optionally continue with additional 3+2 years until 2026.
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