The 2014 Australian Innovation System Report was released by the Commonwealth Department of Industry and Science on 10 February 2015.  This report, published annually and aiming to provide a picture of innovation in Australia, is available online.

Highlights taken from the Report follow:

  • Innovation matters for business and international competitiveness
  • Australian firms are innovative but, on average, Australia’s exporters perform relatively poorly on innovation
  • Australian firms lag in new-to-market innovation
  • Australian business conditions support innovation, competitiveness and investment
  • Investment in innovation is dominated by large firms
  • Australia has several business sectors that are internationally competitive (agricultural and mining commodities, basic metals, food, tourism and education-related travel services) with all business sectors having some stand-out innovators
  • High innovation capability is found where Australia has internationally competitive industries (this finding being based on a combination of R&D, patent and trade mark data)
  • Australia is lacking in export diversity
  • Australia’s low level of collaboration limits ability to diversify the economy
  • Greater collaboration on innovation between sectors will help drive world-first innovation and global value chain participation

The report reaches a fairly gloomy conclusion that Australia’s innovation system is a mid-range performer among OECD countries with evidence suggesting that Australia’s innovation performance is lagging.  However, solutions lie in greater collaboration and the ability of business managers and leaders to focus on innovation in the future.