Cooperative Research Australia (CRA) Advocates for Industry-led Research to Propel Australia’s Economic Growth

Cooperative Research Australia (CRA), the voice of industry-research collaboration, is delighted to participate in the consultation on the Industry Growth Program.  

“We believe that by prioritising industry-led research, we can unlock the full potential of Australia’s innovation system and create a sustainable economy that benefits all,” said Jane O’Dwyer, CEO of Cooperative Research Australia.

The key highlights of CRA’s recommendations are as follows:

  • Prioritising industry-led research to develop sustainable long-lasting solutions that meet market demands. 
  • Expand eligibility criteria of SMEs to ensure better chances of success, including governance capacity, minimum employee threshold and clear business model. 
  • Fast-track applications from technologies arising from industry-led research program to leverage on Commonwealth funding, incorporate a coordinated innovation system, increase probability of success, and signal the private sector. 
  • Prioritise projects according to criteria related to market validation, commitment to sustainability and ESG considerations, collaborations and export readiness. 
  • Consider an expanded system for readiness evaluation including Technology Readiness Level TRL and Commercial Readiness Index (CRI). 
  • Industry partner organisations’ experience should be shared with participants on issues like market expertise, business development support, access to networks, R&D facilitation, business mentorship, amongst others. 
  • The program could request alumni commitment to support fellow participants that are still going through their journey. 
  • To ensure comprehensive and effective program governance and grant assessment, the committee should include experts in R&D and IP and reflect the diversity of the wider community. 
  • Metrics should be expanded to reflect effectivity of long-term desired impacts. 
  • A follow up beyond the immediate post-grant period is advised, which adopts quantitative data templates. 

“Our recommendations aim to strengthen Australia’s innovation potential by sharing industry partner expertise, support of SMEs, prioritisation of projects, nurturing alumni contribution, and establishing comprehensive and effective program governance.”  said Ms O’Dwyer. 

CRA is dedicated to playing an active role in shaping effective policies and programs to drive economic growth and prosperity for Australia.

Link to submission