Trailblazing towards research translation

The Commonwealth points to its preferred pathway

There is $242m for “trailblazer universities” to establish four research and industry hubs, “to lead breakthroughs” in “critical national manufacturing priorities.”

The announcement is silent on which hubs will work on what priorities, which include, defence, space, resources technology, food and beverage, clean energy and medical products. Maybe universities that pitch can make up their own minds. (A hub on food and beverages in space would be worth watching).

Successful bidders will receive $50m over four years, “to build commercialisation capacity” plus $8m for CSIRO support, “through their proven Test Labs.”

Bids will be assessed on,

* industry links, including co-funding commitments

* “innovative” IP arrangements

* promotion pathways for entrepreneur academics

* governance chaired by “an industry leader”

Plus, one hub will have to involve a regional uni.

The announcement is a scene-setter for the recommendations of the Research Commercialisation Taskforce.