Greens want 'cultural change' on innovation


Greens innovation spokesperson, Senator Nick McKim, has joined the chorus calling for cultural change in Australia's approach to turning R&D into commercial outcomes.

Speaking in response to publication of the 2014-15 annual report of Innovation Australia, Senator McKim argued for action in response to the evidence confirming the contrast between Australia's strong performance in research compared to its poor performance in generating commercial outcomes.

According to Senator McKim, "The Global Innovation Index has currently listed Australia at No. 17—nowhere near good enough—but, when it comes to turning research into commercial outcomes, Australia drops to 72nd place.

"A 2015 OECD report on entrepreneurship revealed barriers to entrepreneurship in Australia, which included complexity of regulation, administrative burdens, lack of venture capital investment and government support for big business over small business".

Senator McKim said all these issues need to be addressed but that "cultural change" is fundamental.

"If we are serious about long-term, sustained cultural change around innovation, we need a culture of innovation in our schools and we need to encourage our students to take more risks, to be less afraid of failure and to embrace innovation culture," he said.