4 Jan 2016

The Benefits Of Australia’s Innovation Fund

The Australian Government announced a huge investment of $1.1 billion at the end of 2015 to fund innovation, start-ups and STEM. According to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, “it is a boom that can continue forever”. So what are the benefits of the Innovation Fund?

Diversify the economic portfolio of Australia

The initiative will help move the country’s dependency on the mining industry to innovative and creative ideas. It aims to promote computing, mathematics and science in schools, reward risks made, and give incentives to innovation.Australians are encouraged to experiment with new ideas, and improve growth engines that don’t involve agriculture and mining.

A five-year $51 million package will be used to promote digital literacy. $48 million will be allocated to Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) literacy program to help schools keep up with technology. A huge chunk of the fund will also be invested in science: $10 million over four years in Biomedical Translation Fund towards $250 million, $15 million in CSIRO Innovation Fund towards $200 million, and $75 million in Data 61, CSIRO’s data research arm.

Looser immigration laws

New visa requirements will make it easier for international talents to work and live permanently in Australia, especially those that contribute to innovation. As a result, the move is seen as a welcomed change for those looking for a new life in Oz.

Minimise the fear of failure

With risk-taking being rewarded, the government is hoping to minimise fear of failure, and maximise people’s full potential. They are encouraged to experiment, without fear of risks and uncertainties when validating their business ideas.

Boost the young start-up scene in Australia

Most business activities are found in major centres, like Melbourne and Sydney, but the Innovation Fund will help other hubs like Adelaide and Perth, which are gradually making a name for themselves and will be able to transition themselves from mining dependency to other innovative ideas, and boost business activities at the same time.

To help start-ups lift off, $8 million is allocated to the Incubator Support Programme, and $36 million will go to the Global Innovation Strategy. This will assist Australian entrepreneurs to get started in leading innovation locations, including Silicon Valley.

With a former venture capitalist on the helm, the “ideas boom” are sure to boom. As an investor himself, Prime Minister Turnbull knows and understands how cheap and quick experimentation can minimise business uncertainty and risks.

Sheila Woods

Posted by: Sheila Woods

A very experienced migration agent, Sheila has always been fascinated by this field. Her university degree thesis was on Australia’s post-war immigration history (and it earned her first-class honours).

Filed in: Visas


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