Home' Link : issue 1 Contents Relationships among universities, government,
industries and community organisations
operating outside of metropolitan areas tend to be
close. Rural and regional stakeholders usually know each
other well. Often, they are in close proximity to one another
and they know where each other is "coming from".
So it's only natural that they collaborate on issues
that occur in the areas in which they all operate,
such as skills shortages and sustainable community
development. In addition they often share resources
and collaborate on research that's vital to solving local
social, economic or industry-specific problems.
Since 2002, the Australian government has
operated a scheme to encourage strong cooperation --
the Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage Projects
-- which invests tens of millions of dollars in research
across Australia annually. e program promotes and
funds local partnerships that develop new knowledge,
involve risk or innovation and deliver mutual benefits
to each partner.
e scheme requires that the "partner" makes
significant contributions in cash and/or in kind,
to the project that is equal to, or greater than, the
government's funding. Combined, the funding
supports universities such as CQUniversity a nd provides
resources for personnel, especially postgraduate
research students, equipment, travel and more.
In 2009 the gover nment announced $66.8 million
in funding for 211 research projects. In addition to the
government investment, 437 partner organisations --
Strong and productive
research partnerships between
universities and industry
advance new knowledge and
innovation across Australia.
including national and international governments,
and private and non-profit organisations -- provided an
extra $1 21.3 million in cash and in-kind contributions.
One project announced last year will aid the
development of techniques to address the issue of cane
toad invasion -- a major threat to Central Queensland's
biodiversity. Another is based on the development and
utilisation of renewable energy technologies which can
be integrated into electricity grids.
It is this high level of applied research and type
of engagement (or linkage) among partners which,
according to the Australian Research Council, will
ensure a significant transfer of knowledge and skills in
2010, leading to ideas and outcomes that support and
strengthen Australia's national innovation system.
All Linkage Projects contribute to national priority
a reas such as an Environmentally Sustainable
Australia, Promoting and Maintaining Good Health ,
Frontier Technologies for Building and Transforming
Australian Industries and Safeguarding Australia.
Proposals for Linkage Projects funding are subject
to a rigorous, independent peer review process that
considers factors such as the researcher's track record
a nd capacity to undertake the work, the significance
a nd innovation of the proposed research, the approach
to be taken, training opportunities to be made
available, and national benefit.
Organisations can learn more about the scheme and
take advantage of the other resources available -- at their
doorstep -- through CQUniversity Australia.■
top three Linkage
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with QUT, the
Public Works and
learning and work
young people with
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