Dr. Vreni Schoenenberger is the Global Franchise Head, External Affairs and Partnership Strategy at Novartis, where she oversees external market shaping and major global partnerships on behalf of an $8B neuroscience portfolio, including novel and blockbuster therapies for complex diseases such as Multiple Sclerosis, Alzheimer’s Disease, Migraine, and Huntington’s Disease. Vreni serves as a board member and/or advisor to a number of early stage health and med tech ventures (Okko, Neuronostics, Mindstep, Icometrix, among others), VC scout programs, and accelerators, and is chair of the industry board of the European Brain Council.
During her tenure at Novartis, Vreni has launched 5 products, including 3 blockbusters; spearheaded first-of-their kind neuroscience initiatives at the World Economic Forum and G20; helped pass the first WHO Global Action Plan on Neurological conditions; and established the Novartis Innovation Prize in partnership with Sequoia, Airbnb, Microsoft, Uber and SXSW.
She came to Novartis with a 15 year track record of ensuring that healthcare innovations reach those that need them most. Her experience spans positions working on pandemic response at the World Health Organization, supporting global health policy at the U.S. National Institutes of Health, and work at the global biopharma trade group (IFPMA), where she was responsible for overseeing collaborations with the likes of the United Nations, Gates Foundation, and Global Fund. Before this, she spent several years working on behalf of Yale University’s $45B endowment, focusing on building out out the Yale Entrepreneurship Institute and funding public health research and education at the University.
Vreni holds a Ph.D in Modern History and Policy from Yale, where she was a Fulbright and MacMillan Scholar. She earned a B.S. in Bioethics, summa cum laude, from Vanderbilt University, where she was an Ingram Scholar.