Perhaps nowhere do technology and real estate intersect more deeply than in the life sciences industry, where sophisticated technologies are integral to tenants’ operations. The life sciences industry, which was experiencing significant growth prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, has become one of the most talked-about asset classes in recent months as companies race to identify a safe and effective vaccine for COVID-19. This even brighter spotlight on life sciences companies comes amid a historic surge in investment in biotech, pharmaceutical and medical device start-ups focused on the search for innovative approaches to, among other things, health issues facing an aging population. In order to keep research, development and production on pace (and, in the case of companies developing potential COVID-19 vaccines, at an extraordinarily accelerated pace), life sciences companies old and new, as well as owners and operators of life sciences lab and office space, are fast-tracking the use of existing and new technologies.
ACCELERATED USE OF TECHNOLOGIES BY TENANTS
As our colleagues pointed out in July1 , the work-from-home policies adopted by many companies are difficult or impossible to apply to much of the work done in laboratories. Life sciences companies have therefore increasingly relied on scheduling and remote communication technologies to coordinate staggered calendars for on-site employees to conduct research and other lab activities that cannot practically be done from home. Laboratory-specific calendar tools with features like native mobile applications that allow all employees access to real-time scheduling software have seen more widespread use. Some life sciences companies