BE2 - Vlaams Gewest / Flanders Region

Innovation Performance Group (2019) : Strong +

Total population (2019) 6,596,233

Population per km² (2017) 487

Proportion population older 65 year % 20,20%


Flanders has showcased as a region with great potential in the pharmaceutical market. The region is characterised by exceptionally rapid approval times for clinical trials and puts heavy emphasis on biotech R&D, through a well-developed ecosystem of startups, SMEs and larger international companies. Different strategic research centra (VIB, imec, VITO) focus on aspects related to personalised medicine and work on the valorisation of their research.


Personalised medicine is furthermore one of the priorities in Flanders' smart specialisation strategy. In this light, Flanders is one of the leading regions in the smart specialisation partnership on personalised medicine (S3P4PM) and coordinator of the SAPHIRe project.

Is the region looking for international/European/interregional collaboration opportunities? 

Yes - S3 partnerships

Membership status

Member ICPerMed? no 

Mountain ? Non-mountain

Member Euregha? yes 

Adriatic-Ionian MacroRegion? no

InnoStars Region? no 

Northern Sparsely Populated Area (NSPA)? no

PM region according EC? yes 

Baltic Sea MacroRegion? no

S3MedTech region? yes 

Danube MacroRegion? no

S3P4PM region? yes 

Alpine MacroRegion? no

Regions4PM region? no

ERAPerMed?  no 

Central Europe? no

MedTech4Europe? no

Council of European BioRegions (CEBR)? yes

1M+Genome initiative? country level member

European Regions Research & Innovation Network (ERRIN)?  yes

Vanguard Initiative? yes

S3ClusSport member?  yes

Policy documents


  1. Regional level: Vlaamse Beleidsplan Gepersonaliseerde Geneeskunde

  2. Regional level: Vlaanderen in transitie  

  3. Regional press release: SAPHIRe 

  4. National action plan eHealth 

Topics covered In policies : Medical research and innovation (-omics, biomarkers, diagnostics, etc.); Education, training and skill development; Prediction and prevention; ICT/genomics, health, lifestyle data(infrastructure); Electronic and mobile health solutions; Value based healthcare; Public awareness, patient participation with respect to Personalised Medicine/Personalised Health

Funding programmes or other support measures:

NACE Personalised Medicine/Personalised Health related to Research and Innovation objectives:

C - Manufacturing; C.21 - Basic pharmaceutical  products and pharmaceutical preparations; M - Professional, scientific and   technical activities

Scientific domain NABS Personalised Medicine/Personalised Health related to Research and Innovation: NABS07 - Health

Policy objective Personalised   Medicine/Personalised Health related related to Research and Innovation  objectives: G - Public health & security; G.49 - Public health & well-being; I - Social innovation; I.59 - Social innovation with   regard to health, well-being & elder care

Policy document (RIS3): Yes 

Policy document PM@RIS3: Yes

Major initiatives

  1. GAP (Genomics Application Platform)

  2. S3P4PM


  4. VIB Grand Challenges program


  6. Elixir Belgium Data

  7. Centers for Medical Genetics  Genome sequencing infrastructure

  8. VIB  strategic research centra

  9. imec  strategic research centra

  10. VITO  strategic research centra

  11. Wetenschapspark UAntwerpen in Niel


  13. EIT Health Benelux

  14. SAPHIRe

  15. RegMed XB

  16. Diabetes Biobank Brussels

  17. Biobank Brussels Health Campus

  18. Flemish Biobank 

  19. Antwerpen registry of congenital anomalies - contributes to the EUROCAT network 

  20. CrossCare

  21. It Takes a Village to Raise a Child

  22. Nano4Sports

  23. Gezond ouder worden – Een Euregionale opportuniteit

  24. NanosensEU

  25. Technology in Healthcare education

  26. Seniors Network Support

  27. Genetic tools for Ecosystem health Assessment in the North Sea region



  30. De Lerende Euregio Scheldemond

  31. Network of European Delta Regions - Sustainable Delta Governance

  32. Intelligent Modern System Design

  33. ZULU

  34. Consortium for Assistive Solutions Adoption

  35. Shared value creation in the Healthcare economy through INtegrated business modEls 

  36. HELIS Academy

  37. Digital Innovation Hubs:


Is the region represented in: Horizon2020; Regional Smart Specialisation Strategy Platforms/Partnerships (RIS3); EIT Health/InnoStars/Regional Innovation Scheme (RIS); other?

  1. S3P4PM


Organisations in Flanders

  1. IMEC-  academic/research

  2. Vlaams Instituut voor Biotechnologie VIB-  academic/research

  3. Vlaams Instituut voor Technologisch Onderzoek VITO - academic/research

  4. Biomedisch Onderzoeksinstituut BIOMED-  academic/research

  5. Departement Neurowetenschappen, KU Leuven - academic/research

  6. Therapeutische en Diagnostische Antilichamen, KU Leuven - academic/research

  7. Cancer Research Institute Ghent CRIG-  academic/research

  8. Klinische Farmacologie en Farmacotherapie, KU Leuven - academic/research

  9. Biomedical informatics research network Antwerp Biomina-  academic/research

  10. Leuven Big Data Platform-  academic/research

  11. Oncology Center Jessa Ziekenhuis - academic/research

  12. Mobile Health Unit MHU - academic/research

  13. Centrum Menselijke Erfelijkheid CME - academic/research

  14. Centrum Medische Genetica Antwerpen - academic/research

  15. Centrum Medische Genetica Gent CMGG - academic/research

  16. Centrum voor Medische Genetica CMG - academic/research

  17. Centrum voor Oncologisch Onderzoek CORE - academic/research

  18. Leuven Kanker Instituut LKI-  academic/research

  19. Laboratory for Precision Cancer Medicine  LPCM-  academic/research

  20. Leuven Institute for Human Genomics and Society LIGAS- academic/research

  21. The Leuven Centre for Artificial Intelligence LEUVEN.AI - academic/research

  22. Participatiemaatschappij Vlaanderen PMV -  financing

  23. Agentschap Innoveren & Ondernemen VLAIO - financing

  24. Departement Economie, Wetenschap & Innovatie DEWI - financing

  25. Flanders Health-  industry

  26.  industry

  27. DSP Valley - industry

  28. MedTech Flanders - industry

  29. Bio-Accelerator -  infrastructure

  30. Bio-Incubator Leuven - infrastructure

  31. BioVille - infrastructure

  32. Bioqubeventures - infrastructure

Self evaluation

General perception of the implementation level of PM in the region - Medium

Rate of the need for developing and implementing PM in the region - Very High

Rate of the need for increasing support/funding for PM activities in the region - High

Rate of the need for increasing the capacity of PM skills in the region - High

Rate of the genomics literacy of the citizens in the region - Medium

Rate of the need for increasing interregional collaboration in PM - Medium



European Regions Research and Innovation Network (ERRIN)

Image attribution

By Blank map of Europe (with disputed regions).svg: maix¿?derivative work: Alphathon - This file was derived from:  Blank map of Europe (with disputed regions).svg:, CC BY-SA 3.0,

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This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 

2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 825046

The project is co-ordinated by Department Economy, Science and Innovation (EWI) of the Flemish Government.

Department Economy, Science and Innovation - Koning Albert II-laan 35 1030 Brussels, Belgium