A bright future for collaboration
Australian manufacturing increased to save the day during covid-19. And this despite decades of underinvestment from governments and widespread pessimism from cynics.
How does Australian manufacturing continue to thrive as the world returns to normal? A big answer to this question lies in its ability to innovate.
It’s no secret that Australia has some issues to deal with with the commercialization of innovation.
Don’t get me wrong, Australia has exceptional idea generators in the engineering and science departments of universities and research institutes. It has a multitude of very successful companies. What he struggles with is the middle zone of innovation – translating new blue sky ideas into business results.
Far too many great Australian ideas are left on the whiteboard – or in journals – because of a disconnect between our researchers and our businesses. This problem has been identified time and time again when experts look at Australia’s manufacturing industry.
But there is clarity on the horizon. The Advanced Manufacturing Growth Center was established in 2016 by the federal government and is focused on addressing these issues and promoting collaboration. It offers co-investment incentives as well as practical business advice to help connect with the Australian research community, including at universities and CSIRO.
Approximately $57 million in federal and territorial funding has been allocated to 141 projects, supplemented by approximately $78 million in private sector funding. It is estimated that these collaborations could increase GDP by around $1.6 billion.
Take a single success story. Omni Tanker has partnered with UNSW to develop an innovative carbon composite tank trailer concept for highly corrosive materials. UNSW has been instrumental in validating the technology for US regulators, opening up the lucrative US market.
But for many Australian manufacturers, it’s hard to know where to start. Universities can be opaque and it can be difficult to know how to find the right researchers.
That’s why we’re excited to announce our new section on Universities, Research and Collaboration.
Research collaboration is key to the future of Australian manufacturing and once again Industry Update is leading the way.