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Life sciences

Choose a career in life sciences and make a huge difference with some important discoveries. There's demand for staff at every level, so there are many routes in.

What impact could you make?

Discover new drugs or technologies that improve global health care.
Help Scotland achieve its net zero ambitions by developing alternative energy sources to fossil fuels.
Ensure the sustainability of global food sources and focus on animal health.
I want to look back and know that I’ve made a difference – to myself and my skill set but also the patients that I see.RachaelTrainee Clinical Scientist, Queen Elizabath University Hospital

Life sciences at a glance

Life sciences is central to Scotland's fight against the climate emergency. Plus, the industry is using precision medicine and medical technology like artificial intelligence to improve our health service.


In 2023, there were 27,400 people working in the life and chemical sciences industry in Scotland.

Job availability

Between 2023 and 2026, it's expected there will be 600 people needed to fill job openings in Scotland.

Job diversity

As of October 2023, there are 65 Modern Apprentices across Scotland training in life sciences and related sciences.

Things you may not know about life sciences

The skills and talents of people who work in Scotland's life science industry are recognised all over the world.

Source: Skills Development Scotland

There are more than 750 life science companies operating across Scotland.

Source: Life Sciences in Scotland

You don't need to be based in a laboratory to have a career in the life sciences industry. For example, you could work in local community clinics.

Source: Health Careers NHS

Leaders in life sciences

Discover some of the organisations within life sciences and how they’re making an impact on the industry.