Articles on Research and development

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Measuring the impact of research in the real world sounds a bit impossible, but Australia is going to do it anyway. Research image from

Research meets the real world – now comes the hard part

So you’re just recovering from the last ERA (Excellence for Research Australia) assessment? Dust yourself off, Excellence in Innovation for Australia (EIA) is heading our way. This is the new paradigm…
The future of manufacturing lies in making high quality, niche products. Flickr\stevey b

Niche markets can breathe new life into manufacturing

Ford’s announcement that it will cease making cars in Australia is an enormous blow to manufacturing, and especially to the workers involved. But does it mean Australian manufacturing on its deathbed…
Wayne Swan’s budget has been disappointing for Labor’s education legacy. AAP Image/Lukas Coch

Does the budget make us a clever country?

The last Labor budget has seen the top half of the Education Revolution fizzle. The ideals that powered the 2009 Gillard policies are in fragments. Demand-driven higher education will survive until the…
Are we seeing an education revolution or counter-revolution? James Bowe

On academic efficiency and the 2013 federal budget

As you may have noticed, the 2013 federal budget is out and, despite his best efforts, Euromoney’s “2011 Finance Minister of the Year” Wayne Swan has missed his earlier predicted budget surplus by almost…
Universities do have a role to play in helping developing countries. University image from

Universities and the poorest billion

The following is based on the Monash Richard Larkins Oration given by Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz, Vice-Chancellor of Cambridge University last night in Melbourne. You can read and listen to our In…
Around half a billion dollars will be cut over four years from a program that supports Australian research, the MYEFO showed.

Mid-year budget slashes $499m from research support

Almost half a billion dollars will be cut over four years from a program that helps pay overhead costs for Australia’s researchers…
Researchers who have sometimes been waiting years for funding have been left in the lurch by government. Research image from

Time to thaw: the human side of the research funding freeze

The Australian Research Council’s confirmation that all funding awards and rounds are currently frozen has caused major concern, if not panic, in academic circles. The Mid Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook…
An experienced lab technician is one of the most readily employable people in the R&D-intensive industries. fungiman_MD

Beware: research technicians need more than just a pulse

Earlier this year the American journalist David Plotz wrote in Slate that: America needs a lot more good engineers and scientists, more competent scientists, even more mediocre scientists. I agree that…
Some of the biggest water-energy-food integration challenges are on better soils close to major population centres; in this case, Adelaide. Andrew Campbell

Rethinking rural research in Australia

Rural research is vital. It is about 10% of our national innovation system. Annual investment exceeds $1 billion, according to the Rural Research and Development Council. The rural sector and farm-dependent…
Innovation hubs, such as this one in Florida, are seen as one way to encourage industry and public sector partnerships.

Universities Australia criticises manufacturing taskforce

Peak body Universities Australia has criticised the Prime Minister’s Manufacturing Taskforce for understating the value of…
Cuts to the R&D tax incentives for Australian businesses - as proposed by the Business Tax Working Group - have significant implications for our future economic wellbeing. Image from

Scrapping the R&D tax incentive is hardly a smart idea for economic policy

The Business Tax Working Group discussion paper’s suggestion to reduce the R&D tax incentive reveals a clear-cut attitude to policy aimed at Australia’s economic development: “It’s all about the tax…

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