Bid to boost commercialisation at regional unis

James Cook University in Queensland. | Newsreel
James Cook University is one of the regional Queensland universities which benefit from a new State Government program. | Photo: Supplied by Australian Universities.

A new Queensland program will better connect regional universities to investors and help facilitate networking.

The State Government is providing $7 million to establish the Regional University Industry Collaboration Program with the aim of accelerating the commercialisation of the state’s research and development in the regions.

State Science and Innovation Minister Leanne Linard said Queensland’s regional universities were undertaking research in a wide range of fields, but had less access to investors and networks, compared with universities based in metropolitan centres.

Minister Linard said this had contributed to less industry engagement and lower rates of commercialisation.

“The industry collaboration program will help local small-medium sized enterprises and regional universities overcome barriers that have led to lower rates of commercialisation and engagement between industry and the research sector,” she said.

Minister Linard said the program would be delivered by CSIRO, with team of regional research facilitators delivering three complementary program components to aid identification, facilitation, negotiation and brokering services to both businesses and universities.

She said the facilitators would draw upon three key tools to set up and progress research collaborations within regions.

These include:

  • Masterclasses for both businesses and university stakeholders to improve knowledge and understanding of research commercialisation leading to more successful collaborations.
  • Regional research/industry events to showcase and improve visibility of capabilities to potential collaborators across universities, industry and government and providing networking opportunities to discuss problems, capabilities, resources and co-design solutions that lead to research collaborations and strategies for translation.
  • Vouchers worth up to $50,000 each (matched funding required) to fund SME-university collaborative projects.

The regional universities included in the program are James Cook University, Central Queensland University, University of the Sunshine Coast and the University of Southern Queensland.

Learn more about the Regional University Industry Collaboration Program.