CSIRO marks one year of Data61 operations

Latest News

CSIRO has marked the first year of operations of Data61 - Australia's largest data innovation group.

Data61 was formed to help ensure Australia is positioned to take advantage of what is commonly described as the world's fourth industrial revolution - the convergence of IT, biology and materials science.

In a statement, CSIRO said there is a growing need to renew current industries and create new opportunities for jobs and economic growth in areas such as cybersecurity, automated regulation and compliance, health and wellness, food provenance and smart cities.

Its Data61 has brought together a large partner network including federal and state government departments, industry, university partners and CSIRO-wide capability to foster the development of an ecosystem of innovation and collaboration.

In its first year, Data61 has grown to over 900 employees, including 329 PhD students from 70 countries. It has 14 locations, raised $75 million in capital and completed 273 project milestones.

One project was Bionic Vision Technology. It received $23.6 million to support development of the first Australian bionic eye implant.

"Our talented team has executed all of our third party delivery obligations globally and, at the same time, seeded a culture of excellence in everything we do – from science through to technology and operations," said Data61 CEO Adrian Turner.

"I'm proud to say, by collaborating with our partners and stakeholders, we have already delivered in advancing the course of Australian innovation from within.

"Next year will be even bigger as Data61 continues to lead on many important technology and data-driven opportunities for Australia.

"We will continue to drive our science and technology towards tangible outcomes for Australian business and government, and will leverage our science and technology in the market to help accelerate existing industries and seed new technology-based industries that generate jobs."

CSIRO's chief executive, Dr Larry Marshall, said Data61 was originally created to apply world-leading solutions to the data issues of the future, in particular how to navigate Australia through digital disruption and turn job loss into job creation.

"The world is drowning in big data, but our expert analysis is turning that commodity intoinsight, a unique and powerful value," said Dr Marshall.

"Creating Data61 as part of CSIRO is a core element of Strategy 2020 and has meant we can take deep data-science expertise into Australia's key growth markets – delivering end-to-end, big picture solutions for all 3,000 of our customers – whether they're in government, industry, or the community.

"Happy birthday Data61, we couldn't be prouder to have you as part of our team."