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From the President and the CEO

The AO: Where collaboration accelerates innovation

At the AO, 2022 was a year in which our collaborative efforts were rewarded with innovations on all fronts. As an organization, the pandemic years challenged us to become more agile in our collaborations. Instead of our strategic partnerships shrinking, we experienced growth in this area, with our most extensive portfolio of active core-aligned projects with DePuy Synthes in years, the AO's full-stake investment in RIMASYS, and the signing of a memorandum of understanding for collaboration between the AO and Balgrist University Hospital in Zurich. Collaboration was also fortified between our AO colleagues, with the opening of our new office in Zizers, Switzerland—an ideal setting for the AO's international staff to gather and work in a fully equipped, state-of-the-art workplace.

By continually seeking new strategic approaches that strengthen both our relationships and mission, we emerged this past year with more tools and resources that enhanced our approach to education, research, and innovation.

The imposed distance of the pandemic years inspired us to generate new, lasting ways to connect and made us realize the value—and privilege—of coming back together. We have carried forward our learnings, and in 2022 alone, we delivered more than 870 events and trained more than 82,000 participants.

The new initiative AO Sports developed and finalized three new curricula and hosted its first-ever AO Sports Principles Courses in North America and Switzerland. The crescendo of the AO's in-person comeback culminated with the on-site return of the full AO Davos Courses offerings in December 2022 after two years of pandemic stops and starts, where 1,058 participants and more than 350 faculty traveled from over 70 countries to teach, learn, and experience the AO's flagship event.

This year also marks the regulatory approval and first clinical use of the biphasic plate, developed by the AO Research Institute Davos (ARI) with the support of the AO's Development Incubator—a testament to the power of collaboration yielding innovations with life-altering benefits to patients. ARI's scientific staff garnered multiple international career achievement awards, and the team delivered a record number of publications, with multiple staff listed in the top 2 percent of scientists worldwide.

The AO Innovation Technology Center (AO ITC) delivered 23 new approved solutions through the AO Technical Commission. AO ITC's Network Clinical Research validated multiple groundbreaking tools and studies. Innovation was running full tilt at the AO ITC in 2022, with 12 actively funded Development Incubator projects and seven Strategy Fund projects.

Collaboration accelerating innovation
Collaboration is the bedrock of the AO's past, present, and future. The AO's partnerships between surgeons, researchers, innovators, and our industrial partner, DePuy Synthes, have yielded revolutionary surgical methods and premier international educational offerings. As we saw in 2022 at the AO, the pace of innovation accelerates with the power of our collaborations—both of which continue to grow and strengthen as we continue exploring the frontier of surgery.

Florian Gebhard

AO President

Christoph Lindenmeyer


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