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I’m R&D Magazine Editor Laura Panjwani.
Top R&D Players Make “Change the World” List
Fortune Magazine recently released its fourth annual “Change the World” list, an initiative designed to highlight companies that have made significant progress in addressing major social problems as a part of their core business strategy.
57 companies that Fortune describes as, “using the profit motive to help the planet and tackle social problems,” are included in the 2018 list. Of those companies, seven are also amongst the top 25 spenders in R&D that R&D Magazine follows as part of R&D Market Pulse. Check out our website for the full list of companies in the Top 25.
Merck Recognized for Ebola Vaccine
The pharmaceutical company Merck leads the pack, coming in 2nd on Fortune’s 2018 “Change the World” list for its work developing the Ebola vaccine.
After thousands died of the disease around the world during the first outbreak in 2014, Merck got to work on preventive measures.
When cases of Ebola once again started to develop in the Democratic Republic of the Congo earlier this year, the company shipped nearly 13,000 doses of their newly developed Ebola vaccine V920 to the World Health Organization, which provided vaccinations to more than 3,300 people. With another outbreak declared in the eastern DRC in August, Merck’s vaccine is on the front lines once more.
Google Makes Laptops Affordable
Alphabet’s Google business unit came in at number 12 on the Change the World list, for creating cheap, Chromebook laptops that are affordable for schools.
In a time of tight school budgets, Chromebook laptops from Alphabet’s Google unit accounted for nearly 60% of PC shipments to U.S. K–12 schools in 2017, according to Future-source Consulting. And over 30 million students and teachers use Google Classroom software.
Intel’s Crash-Avoidance Tech
Intel came in #15 on the list for its work on crash-avoidance technologies, which could significantly reduce road-related injuries which took 1.4 million lives in 2016.
Fortune specifically recognized Intel their acquisition of Mobileye, an Israeli company whose autonomous driving and anti-collision tech is installed in over 27 million vehicles. Intel aims to keep the technology affordable, pricing its collision avoidance system below $1,000.
J&J Training in India
Johnson & Johnson came in #20 on Fortune’s list for its work training health care workers overseas. Through its Johnson & Johnson Institute, the pharma giant has trained over 250,000 health care workers in India since 1993. The curriculum includes instruction in advanced techniques such as minimally invasive surgeries.
Apple has improved the planet by revolutionizing the way we communicate and it is that simple factor that promoted Fortune to make them #24 on the Change the World list.
Over the last decade the iPhone has changed human behavior, from facilitating computing on the go to sending instant messages in times of need. Apple has also taken principled stands on privacy, such as not selling access to its users’ data and is mindful of its carbon footprint.
Toyota’s Robotics Tech
Toyota claimed the 31st spot of the list, for its role in robotics technology. The company is building and investing in robotics to help the disabled and elderly and has created a walking-assist system to help stroke victims or others with disabilities learn to use their legs again. Toyota also recently invested in Israel’s Intuition Robotics, whose robots can remind the elderly to handle tasks like taking medication.
Microsoft AI Accessibility
Coming in at number 39 on Fortune’s list is R&D giant Microsoft, who was also recognized for improving accessibility for the disabled. In May it launched a multiyear project to harness artificial intelligence for accessibility. Researchers now get access to Microsoft’s cloud computing resources—which in turn expands the reach of that fast-growing business.
Check out Fortune Magazine to view the entire “Change the World” list and check out rdmag.com’s R&D Market Pulse Page to learn more about the top 25 spenders in R&D and get expert stock market insights from our contributing editor Tim Studt.
I’m Laura Panjwani and thank you for watching R&D Market Pulse. Join us next week for more R&D business news.