Best Countries for Life Sciences Research

21K School · Jul 26, 2023 · 4 min read

The aftermath of the Covid-19 Pandemic has left the baton of growth to the biopharmaceutical industry. Many industry-leading companies are functioning in countries with the best research facilities for life sciences. As a result, people who wish to build a living in this industry flock to these countries. Find below the list of the best countries providing world-class life sciences research.

The United States of America

At the top of the list is The United States of America. Almost half of its natural science output belongs to Life Sciences. The Life Sciences field crossed $450 billion in sales last year. The United States accommodates more than half of the top 10 pharmaceutical companies, such as Pfizer, Amgen, and Johnson & Johnson, providing more than 240,700 jobs across the globe.

The best Life Science institutes in the USA are:

  • Harvard University
  • Stanford University
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • University of California, Berkeley
  • National Institutes of Health
  • University of Michigan
  • University of California, San Diego
  • University of California, Los Angeles
  • Yale University


Just below the USA, China is the second largest economy in the world. Unlike any other country, China has shown annual growth of 14% in this sector. Moreover, this advancement has also led to many other innovations in the life sciences industry, such as enhanced access to medical products.

The best Life Science institutes in China are:

  • Chinese Academy of Sciences
  • University of Science and Technology of China
  • Peking University
  • Tsinghua University
  • Nanjing University
  • University of Chinese Academy of Sciences
  • Zhejiang University
  • Shanghai Jiao Tong University
  • Sun Yat-sen University


Next on the list comes the technologically advanced nation of Germany. In 2017, Germany showed a growth of 1.5% in this industry. Revenue from the pharmaceutical sector crossed $40.7 billion in 2016. Employing nearly 30,000 people, Bayer AG is the pharmaceutical giant in Germany.

The best Life Science institutes in Germany are:

  • Max Planck Society
  • Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres
  • Leibniz Association
  • Ludwig Maximilians University of Munich
  • Technical University of Munich
  • Heidelberg University
  • University of Münster
  • University of Würzburg
  • Free University of Berlin


It is vital to mention Japan in the list of the top countries for life sciences research. Funding in Japan is a well-thought strategy as it is utilized as a tool to strengthen international ties. Currently, its pharmaceutical market is worth $70 billion.

The best Life Science institutes in Japan are:

  • University of Tokyo
  • Kyoto University
  • Osaka University
  • Tohoku University
  • Tokyo Institute of Technology
  • Nagoya University
  • Kyushu University
  • Hokkaido University

United Kingdom

The next place on this list is the United Kingdom. Two major pharmaceutical companies, GlaxoSmithKline and AstraZeneca, operate in the UK. Output for biopharmaceutical and medical device industries was £30.4 billion in 2015. This industry gave jobs to 73,000 people in 2017. The country aims to expand its R&D budget to 2.4% of GDP by 2027.

The best Life Science institutes in the UK are:

  • University of Cambridge
  • University of Oxford
  • University of York
  • University of Sheffield
  • Imperial College London
  • University College London
  • University of Bristol
  • University of Bath
  • University of Manchester


Next on the list is Canada. Life sciences represent more than 50% of its nature index. The pharmaceutical industry provides job opportunities to more than 1,26,000 people directly and indirectly. Leading pharmaceutical companies in Canada include Apotex and Cobalt.

The best Life Science institutes in Canada are:

  • University of Toronto
  • McGill University
  • University of British Columbia
  • University of Alberta
  • University of Waterloo
  • University of Calgary
  • University of Montreal
  • University of Ottawa
  • Western University


France continues to amaze the world with its incredible potential in all areas. It spends around 48 billion euros, 2.24% of GDP, on research annually to pursue its goal of becoming a country of international-level scientific research.

The best Life Science institutes in France are:

  • French National Centre for Scientific Research
  • Sorbonne University
  • The French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission
  • National Institute for Health and Medical Research
  • University of Paris
  • University of Paris-Sud
  • University of Strasbourg
  • University of Toulouse
  • University of Lyon


Switzerland is widely known for its contribution to the Life Sciences. Large pharmaceutical companies like La Roche, Novartis, and Syngenta operate from here. In international comparisons, the Swiss life sciences industry boasts the highest labour productivity.

The best Life Science institutes in Switzerland are:

  • Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich
  • Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne
  • University of Zurich
  • University of Geneva
  • University of Basel
  • University of Bern
  • University of Lausanne
  • F. Hoffmann-La Roche AG
  • Paul Scherrer Institute

South Korea

The following country on this list is South Korea. This Buddhist nation is known for its impactful Life Science Research industry. The country spends 4.3% of its GDP on research and development.

The best Life Science institutes in South Korea are:

  • Seoul National University
  • Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology
  • Sungkyunkwan University
  • Institute for Basic Science
  • Yonsei University
  • Pohang University of Science and Technology
  • Korea University
  • Hanyang University


The last country on this list is Australia. The high-quality research produced by the Life Sciences sector makes up most of its research output. Technological advancements here have led to the expansion of the life sciences industry.

The best Life Science institutes in Australia are:

  • University of New South Wales
  • University of Queensland
  • Monash University
  • University of Melbourne
  • Australian National University
  • University of Sydney
  • University of Western Australia
  • University of Adelaide


These were a few of the best countries that provide Life Science Research opportunities. To know more about education and research opportunities abroad, check out 21K World School.


21K School World

Read our latest education blogs here. We are pioneers in proffering personalised, affordable and high-quality lessons using an advanced learning platform.

Join Asia’s Leading Online School and Unlock
endless opportunities

Join Asia’s
Leading Online School
and Unlock endless opportunities