Australia 2030: Prosperity Through Innovation. Report of the Consultations Program and Expert Opinion Survey, Innovation and Science Australia, 2017.

The Consultation Program sought to obtain the opinions of businesses, research and teaching organisations, government agencies and intermediaries about the current position, opportunities, and directions for Australia’s Innovation Strategy. The outcome of the consultations included the following key messages:

  • Build and sustain connections and connectedness across the Australian and global innovation systems, and particularly between the university/research, industry, and sectors – and within sectors.
  • Establish a broader understanding of the scope and context for innovation, particularly in the services sector and in the social and environmental domains.
  • See innovation as an ‘investment in the future’ – setting stretch targets, addressing the emerging role of universities in driving industry and regional development, and factors relating to demographic change, diversity, and social inclusion.
  • Lay the foundations for transitioning to Australia’s innovation future, including reinforcing an entrepreneurial mindset, creating leadership capacity and capability, improving access to capital, building commercialisation capability, developing skills and talent for innovation, strengthening capacity for collaboration, and leveraging capabilities across policies.
  • Address innovation system governance, levels of investment in science, research and innovation, and capture the benefits of prior investments.
  • Develop a long-term Innovation System Budget and Plan.

Many of these messages are not new and unsurprising. But they serve to reinforce the interests and concerns of key players in the innovation system. However, the Consultations were able to build a depth of understanding of these areas of interest.

The Consultations also drew attention to the following:

  1. All regions and cities are different: innovation ecosystems are at different stages of development and have different enablers from which to work from.
  2. The overarching importance of connectivity, particularly national digital connectivity.
  3. A perceived absence of long-term policies to assist in developing innovation.
  4. The importance of international knowledge sharing and mobility of talent.
  5. The role of regional innovation systems and the contribution of universities to driving economic development and renewal in depressed regions.

 

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