A roadmap for space industry development through public-private collaboration in Australia
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Public-private collaborations are a well-established principle for advancing applied research and development (R&D) programmes in Australia, in particular to ensure a commercial focus and path to market for resultant technologies. Australia ranks highly for research and innovation in various global rankings but poorly in the commercialisation of that research. Public-private collaborations are a means for leveraging greater investment into innovation, as well as ensuring applied research directly addresses a clear market need, is cost-effective and includes an inherent path-to-market. The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) is Australia’s national research institute with over 50 years’ experience in space research including astronomy and space science. With the establishment of the Australian Space Agency (Agency) the Australian Government has re-emphasised the importance of the space sector to the Australian economy and highlighted it will be one of the most industry-focused space agencies in the world. The Agency will set national policy and strategy for the civil space sector and provide ‘one door and one voice’ to facilitate partnerships in the domestic and international market. The Agency’s role will also focus on being a partner and facilitator, with industry (in partnership with other elements of the innovation ecosystem) needing to lead investment. This paper by CSIRO reviews opportunities for growth of Australia’s space industry and some examples of previous and current public-private collaboration. It does not necessarily represent the views of the Agency. Similar models have been employed successfully to develop key strategic areas for Australia over time, including historic examples in farming, utilities and communications, and more recently in the development of Earth observation and positioning, navigation and timing (PNT) services.
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