Part 1: Place Your Bets

How It Got Here: The Jab

Sep 21 2021 • 31 mins

In March of 2020, as COVID-19 was spreading across American shores, the wheels were already being set in motion to manufacture and eventually distribute vaccines. In Washington, Rear Admiral John Polowcyzk, then lead of the Supply Chain Stabilization Task Force for HHS and FEMA, was grappling with a near empty national stockpile, while laying the groundwork for a vaccine rollout. Simultaneously, in Kalamazoo, Chaz Calitri, Vice President of Operations at Pfizer, was being tasked with developing a process to manufacture millions of doses of a vaccine that didn’t yet exist and was far from guaranteed to win FDA approval. Hear their stories along with insights from some of the world’s leading supply chain experts on the race to the jab and its implications for those nations who got access to life-saving technology, and those who still have not. With Columbia Business School professors Awi Federgruen and Medini Singh, and Prashant Yadav, senior fellow at the Center for Global Development.