Looking for blue skies while eying the market

20 September 2016

CSIRO's is strengthening its investment in 'blue sky' research with the announcement of new Future Science Platforms (FSP), while continuing a new focus on commercialising research through its ON program.

Celebrating 100 years since it was established as the Advisory Council of Science and Industry in 1916, the CSIRO has developed six Future Science Platforms (FSPs), through which the agency is taking aim at challenging and riskier science.

The FSPs were chosen by CSIRO researchers and staff to boost innovation in health and biology, resources, agriculture and manufacturing. Initially launched with $17 million, CSIRO will increase the funding for frontier science delivered through FSPs to $52 million per year by 2020.

video source: vimeo

CSIRO's six new Future Science Platforms are:

However, CSIRO's overall focus has shifted towards supporting commercialisation of research outcomes, notably through its ON program that aims to create connections between research, science and business.

The program consistes of two accelerator elements, the ON Accelerator and the ON-Prime scheme.

The ON Accelerator, which opened in July 2015, offers a three month intensive program for researchers and collaborators to develop and validate high potential innovative ventures. The scheme is open for applications on 4 October 2016, with 10 positions available for research teams across the country.

ON's second element, the ON Prime scheme, is the agency's entry level pre-accelerator program, designed to help research teams discover potential commercial applications of their research.

Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science Greg Hunt has recently announced that 39 teams from CSIRO and Australian universities will have their projects fast-tracked through the scheme, with funding provided under the National Innovation and Science Agenda. The teams will undergo an eight-week program in one of five ON Prime 'hubs' from 20 September.

Among the successful 'ready to break out' projects are:

More information: http://minister.industry.gov.au/ministers/hunt