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02|02|23 Out of the Box # 2. Kinga Matula - Podcast with researchers who left academia and returned to it

Some left, others returned, but they all share one thing: they cannot stop being an academic. Radboud Young Academy and Radboud Reflects present a podcast series on scholars and scientists who take the road less travelled. They started companies, they managed large organizations, or they advised the minister on educational policies. What do they value in contemporary academic practice? What should change? And how do they view the role universities ought to play in society?

Episode 2: Physical chemist turned startup CEO Kinga Matuła

‘Speed,’ says Kinga Matuła, ‘to do things faster.’ That is what academics can learn from entrepreneurs, the physical chemist concludes. The business world, she discovered, is more dynamic while also more focused than academia. It therefore provided Matuła with opportunities that a career in science could not yet give her. The postdoc decided to become an entrepreneur. She started a pharmaceutical startup: QurieGen.

To get the research budgets she wanted, Matuła had to be a full professor. That would take her years. Investors, however, were willing to pick up the bill. They are searching for cost reductions in pharmaceutical production processes. Matuła, meanwhile, is still driven by curiosity. ‘For me,’ she says, ‘the company is a tool to do wonderful science.’

Kinga MatulaKinga Matuła worked as a postdoc in physical chemistry at Radboud University. She is now the CEO of the startup QurieGen. Read also: New spin-off QurieGen can have a major impact on drug development

Listen also to episode 1: Floris Heukelom - Economist turned care farm owner

This is a podcast of Radboud Reflects and Radboud Young Academy.