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Boosting Our Innovation Dividend

By Vaughan Beck

It’s time for urgent action to drive productivity and prosperity.

Dr Vaughan Beck FTSE is Executive Director – Technical with the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, and led its campaign on innovation issues during 2011.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Australia needs to take some substantial steps to boost our national prosperity through innovation. We need to:

• make innovation more attractive;

• change the incentives for Australia’s world-class researchers;

• improve our innovation skills; and

• focus on information and communication technologies (ICT) as the innovation enabler.

None of this will be easy, but not doing it is not an option.

Innovation is about risk-taking and driving new and improved products and services through to the marketplace. The more we do, the better we get.

To Make Innovation More Attractive
We need to foster an innovative management culture and provide financial incentives to encourage companies to be innovative and lift productivity through the application of new technologies. Further government action is required – including training and fostering innovation through government procurement policies.

We need “braver” processes than those currently in place, under which small companies would receive unmatched non-refundable grants for proof-of-concept work, potentially along the lines of the US Small Business Innovation Research scheme.

Specific actions would be:

• extending the R&D tax incentive to cover productivity improvements through the deployment of new technology;

• accelerated...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.