University Precincts

The Government is looking to further improve industry-research collaboration in order to drive Australia’s productivity performance, international competitiveness and innovative capacity. This includes exploring the potential for a national university precincts strategy to bring together businesses, researchers and educators to enhance economic growth.

University and Innovation Precincts, Innovation Districts and Technology Parks are springing up around the country. Evidence on university precincts both domestically and internationally shows that they can create higher levels of innovation, collaboration between businesses and research communities, business growth, and economic growth. They improve business access to talent, encourage entrepreneurship, and help link business to researchers to solve industry problems.

Local leadership is a key success factor to allow precincts to harness and build upon competitive strengths. Strengths can be a combination of local research and education institutions and firms, physical assets and infrastructure (including public transportation, shared work and lab spaces and community spaces), and community connectedness (established social capital and local communities of practice).

University Precincts Advisory Committee

A University Precincts Advisory Committee, chaired by Dr Charles Day (CEO of Innovation and Science Australia), has been established to provide advice to the Government. The Committee’s members represent universities and industry. A full list of members can be found below.

University Precincts Advisory Committee Membership



Charlie Day (Chair)

CEO, Innovation and Science Australia

Innes Willox

Chief Executive, Australian Industry Group

Attila Brungs

Vice Chancellor and President, UTS

Tracy Scott-Rimington

Regional Development Coordinator, Regional Development Australia

Mary Kelly

Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research Development and Industry) Charles Sturt University

Andrew McDougal

Principal and Partner, SGS Economics and Planning

Ros Hore

Director, Strategic Initiatives and Collaboration, CSIRO

Belinda Robinson

Chief Executive, Universities Australia

Vicki Thomson

Chief Executive Group of Eight

Caroline Perkins

Executive Director, Regional Universities Network

Renee Hindmarsh

Executive Director, Australian Technology Network

David Wilkinson

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Corporate Engagement and Advancement), Macquarie University

Tim Minshall

University of Cambridge

Conor King

Executive Director, Innovative Research Universities

Rufus Black

Deputy Chancellor, Victoria University

Peter Schutz

Chair – Food Innovation Australia Limited

The Committee’s advice will be informed by consultations during 2017 and by:

  • a stocktake of existing and planned precinct activities;
  • understanding the role of existing Commonwealth, state and local government programmes in supporting precinct formation and growth; and
  • international and domestic case studies that highlight the characteristics of exemplar clusters.

Consultations will gauge the need for, and possible content of, a National University Precincts Strategy. The Department of Industry, Innovation and Science has developed an Issues Paper to guide consultations.

Please email with any comments or submissions by Close of Business Monday 31 July 2017, or if you have issues accessing this document or require it in another format. Damien Ellwood, Secretariat for the Committee can also be contacted on +612 6276 1336.

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