Health bids dominate 19th Round

Five health-related CRC bids, three in food and agriculture, two in energy and one mining make up the 19th funding round of the Cooperative Research Centres Programme.  AusIndustry is yet to make any announcements on the nature of the round, so discussion here is based on the CRC Association’s inquiries.

All CRC bids are national and are globally-linked. But the State of Origin of bids looks to be changing, with four coming out of NSW (but only two of those from Sydney), three each from South Australia and Queensland and one each from Western Australia and Victoria. The single bid from Victoria is a little surprising, given half of all CRCs are currently based in that State. The University of Queensland is thought to be the most-involved research institution, being a participant in six of the bids.

“State Government encouragement and funding is a factor in CRC bids” says CRCA CEO Tony Peacock. “We have definitely seen a boost in recent years in State interest in South Australia and New South Wales, and signs of the same happening in Western Australia. I think we are seeing an impact of State support in the numbers”.

All the CRC bids map back to the Sector Competitiveness Plan of one or more Industry Growth Centre. But not all Growth Centres are represented. Most notably, no bids fall directly into the cyber security or manufacturing sectors. Tony Peacock says this should not be be a major concern. “Manufacturing and cyber are the two Growth Centres whose activities run across industry areas. For example, food and pharmaceuticals are major areas of manufacturing activity and, without knowing the detail of bids at this stage, I would expect CRCs operating in those sectors to cross-over. Similarly, virtually every CRC bids these days will have a major cyber component just through the nature of their innovations”.

The Growth Centres have had a major impact this round in the shaping of the CRC bids. It is the first full funding round conducted with all six Growth Centres in place and they have taken a proactive role in bid development in a number of cases.

The CRC Association believes the following is the list of Bids submitted (note AusIndustry is still checking eligibility of all bids and this list may change):

  • SMART Ageing CRC – Health  – SA
  • CRC for Distinctive Australian Foods – Food  – QLD
  • CRC for Traumatic Brain Injury – Health  – VIC
  • Oil and Gas Infrastructure Decommissioning CRC– Energy  – WA
  • Digital Health CRC – Health  – NSW
  • Farming Smarter CRC – Food  – NSW
  • Fight Food Waste and Fraud CRC – Food  – SA
  • MinEx CRC – Mining  – SA
  • Future Fuels CRC – Energy  – NSW
  • Chronic Conditions CRC – Health – QLD
  • Aged Care and Chronic Disease CRC – Health – NSW

Health (5); Food (3), Energy (2); Mining (1)
NSW (4); SA (3); QLD (2); WA (1); VIC (1)