The Turning ideas into jobs - Accelerating research and development in NSW Action Plan was led by the Hon. Gabrielle Upton MP, Parliamentary Secretary to the Premier, guided by an Advisory Council chaired by David Gonski AC.
The Action Plan found that NSW Government research and development (R&D) activity and investment needs to be better focused and coordinated if it is to harness and accelerate the translation of research into the products and services crucial for future jobs and industries.
R&D undertaken in our universities, institutes and tech businesses is a major source of innovation and should be supported for the whole community to thrive.
The Action Plan recommended the establishment of a new group, R&D NSW, with responsibility and accountability for R&D activities and investment.
R&D NSW will:
- drive and be accountable for the delivery of the Action Plan and the NSW R&D Roadmap
- provide oversight and accountability for government R&D activities and expenditure
- have oversight of NSW Government programs that fund R&D for start-ups, scale-ups, SMEs, universities, research organisations and industry
- have oversight of the Waratah Research Network as the body responsible for implementing whole-of-government R&D activities
- guide the government’s activities in relation to priority technology precincts, future industries and attracting technology-led investment.
The Action Plan will help make NSW the R&D leader in Australia and a world-class contributor. It recommends five Priority Actions and 16 Supporting Actions that will accelerate the rate at which ideas are translated into new industries, jobs, products and services.
The five recommended Priority Actions are:
- Launch a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program – provide competitive grants for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to find and commercialise innovative solutions to well-defined problems for NSW Government agencies.
- Boost open data – release new government datasets so businesses can make better decisions, entrepreneurs can build new businesses and the government can solve complex challenges.
- Turbocharge precincts – develop precincts to attract national and global technology industries and investment, and drive collaboration between universities, research organisations, start-ups, scale-ups and SMEs, to commercialise R&D.
- Target strategic support for NSW universities – collaborate on research that drives future NSW strategic growth industries and research-led industry attraction, and better leverage Commonwealth Government research funding.
- Establish an R&D Matchmaking Platform – better connect research ‘sellers’ and ‘buyers’ and link researchers to research infrastructure and expertise.
In addition to the Priority Actions, the Action Plan has 16 Supporting Actions grouped around four areas: government action, attraction, translation and collaboration. Together, they will contribute to the development of a NSW R&D Roadmap and help with the scaling-up of already successful NSW Government commercialisation programs.
In developing the Action Plan a comprehensive public consultation process was undertaken with submissions received from businesses, research organisations, government agencies, investors and universities, and over 60 stakeholder consultations. In addition, a series of workshops, forums and roundtables were held with stakeholders. The ideas that emerged from these consultations helped shape the Action Plan.