The Hon Ian Macfarlane MP, Minister for Industry and Science recently released the Miles Review of the Cooperative Research Centres (CRCs) Programme.

The Review contains 18 recommendations, all of which have been accepted by the Australian Government.  As a result, the Government supports the continuation of the CRC Programme but will implement changes to put industry collaboration and growth ‘front and centre’ and to streamline the funding process.

If you are interested in seeking collaboration funding, now is the time to start getting your house in order. 

Key things to consider are:

  1. A funding round is anticipated to open in around 6 months; following consultation on and preparation of new CRC guidelines. 
  2. There will be a streamlined application process (Recommendation 12).
  3. There will be funding opportunities for shorter term (3 years) industry-focused CRC research projects (CRC-Ps) (Recommendation 3).  These are in addition to the larger (10 year) CRCs.
  4. There is a very strong push for CRC proposals to demonstrate collaboration with and improving the competitiveness of Australia’s recently announced growth sectors, namely: Advanced Manufacturing;  Food and Agribusiness; Medical Technologies and Pharmaceuticals; Mining Equipment, Technology and Services; and Oil, Gas and Energy Resources (Recommendation 2).
  5. CRC bidders should also look to establish linkages with the new Industry Growth Centres within these five growth sectors (Recommendation 4).
  6. Funding opportunities through the adoption of CRC-like models by other Australian Government portfolios should also be considered (Recommendation 18).

The Miles Review and its 18 recommendations are available here

Information on the Industry Growth Centres is available here.