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Emerging talent: Privahini Bradoo and the business of science

Privahini Bradoo is already an accomplished scientist—but she’s just getting started

Privahini Bradoo is already an accomplished scientist—but she’s just getting started

Privahini Bradoo

Idealog July/August 2006, page 19. Picture by John McDermott

With two degrees under her belt and a third in the making, Privahini Bradoo is set on transforming the business of science.

Born in India and raised in Muscat, Oman, Bradoo moved to New Zealand when she was 16 to enrol at the University of Auckland. After graduating with First Honours in biomedical science, she went on to study for her PhD in neuroscience and discovered a novel gene family involved in brain repair in 2004.

While studying for her PhD, Bradoo immersed herself in the business sector by leading the establishment of spark*, an entrepreneurial initiative to assist students in startup ventures, and Chiasma, an organisation which builds links between the academic biotech community and the local biotech industry.

Her experiences with spark* and Chiasma exposed an evident gap between the business and science sectors, which she hopes to close. “I feel that New Zealand could have more science-savvy business people,” she says. “We have great scientists and fantastic people with business skills, but it’s about being able to combine the two.”

She’s just the woman to do that: Bradoo has been awarded a US$100,000 Fulbright scholarship to study for an MBA at Harvard Business School. By earning her MBA, she hopes to gain some serious business smarts and establish global connections to benefit the New Zealand biotechnology industry.

“In addition to great education, New Zealand needs global connectivity. I want to add value and help grow New Zealand, and I want to motivate people around me to have a similar goal and vision.”