Never forget how Oxford wanted to open source their vaccine but the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation stepped in and AstraZeneca got exclusive rights. https://khn.org/news/rather-than-give-away-its-covid-vaccine-oxford-makes-a-deal-with-drugmaker/
Oxford University surprised and pleased advocates of overhauling the vaccine business in April by promising to donate the rights to its promising coronavirus vaccine to any drugmaker.
A few weeks later, Oxford—urged on by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation—reversed course.
So I took look at what actually happened, as this sounds like quite a flat story in khn. And indeed, the narrative of good scientists vs. bad pharma + Gates is a bit more nuanced. There apparently was a very good reason for the change of mind on the Oxford side:
Original source: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/23/world/bill-gates-vaccine-coronavirus.html
Archived version (no paywall): https://archive.is/aQxIT
Oxford University said it would offer “nonexclusive, royalty-free licenses” of its work to manufacturers. But as it developed one of the most promising vaccine candidates, the university debated whether it was equipped to conduct clinical trials and transfer its technology to manufacturers around the world.
Sir John Bell, who leads the development of Oxford’s health research strategies and chairs the Gates Foundation’s scientific advisory committee, reached out to Dr. Mundel. The advice was direct: “We told Oxford, ‘Hey, you’ve got to find a partner who knows how to run trials,’” Mr. Gates said.
Oxford chose the British-Swedish drugmaker AstraZeneca. The Serum Institute of India, after getting the financial commitment from Mr. Gates, agreed in the summer to start producing the vaccine.
Note also, according to reports, AstraZeneca committed to do this in a way which won’t extract exuberant profits. But indeed, we do not know the details.
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