Last year, Pfizer was one of several pharmaceutical companies to take on an incredible challenge: make a life-saving vaccine in a fraction of the time it usually takes to do so. Over the course of 2020, Pfizer and others tested vaccine candidates as hundreds of thousands of people died from COVID-19. Pfizer’s success at creating a vaccine with 95% efficacy in record time has landed it, along with its partner BioNTech and fellow vaccine maker Moderna, atop Fast Company‘s Most Innovative Companies list for 2021.
Bourla and Pfizer’s head of vaccine research Kathrin Jansen, joined Fast Company Editor in Chief Stephanie Mehta at the Most Innovative Companies Summit for a conversation about how Pfizer created an effective vaccine so quickly.
“The thing that scientists hate the most is bureaucracy,” says Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla. “Innovation and bureaucracy is oil and water.”
When Pfizer began work on a COVID-19 vaccine, one of the first choices Bourla made was to reduce stop…