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Rising R&D costs, increasing expectations in the areas of productivity and quality, and a growing need to establish operations in close proximity to emerging markets are driving the international expansion of drug-discovery organizations. This global shift is driving new trends in the area of career development and hiring, such as the need for experienced scientific professionals at different locations all over the globe. Although the global pharmaceutical industry is going through significant changes, the role of medicinal chemistry in identifying and optimizing potential new drug candidates remains substantial. Going forward, current and future candidates in the area of medicinal chemistry and other scientific disciplines who have a willingness to work overseas may gain a competitive advantage when entering or advancing within the drug discovery field. 

During the past 10 years, there has been limited growth in the number of approved new chemical entities entering the marketplace in spite of a significant increase in overall R&D spending. For a number of reasons, R&D activities have also become more global during this time. As a result of this globalization associated with expanding international operations, there is an increased need for talent – principally with discovery and development skill sets – that may favor candidates who are willing to consider working in these non-traditional locations. 

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