The Queensland government has allocated more than $142 million towards innovation policies as the state looks to capitalise on the “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity and accelerate growth in the lead up to the 2032 Brisbane Olympics.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk last week unveiled the Advance Queensland - Innovation for a Future Economy 2022-2032 last week, with $142.2 million in new funding to be spread across a number of schemes.
It will build on the existing work of Advance Queensland, which was launched in 2015 and has since had $755 million in funding, leveraged $988 million from industry partners, and supported more than 27,000 jobs in the state, Palaszczuk said.
“When we started on the Advance Queensland journey back in 2015, our aim was to drive innovation, entrepreneurship and jobs to engage in the emerging global future economy,” Palaszczuk said.
“That includes things like the internet of things, artificial intelligence, robotics and biotechnology – that in effect are producing a range of new and interconnected industries, including circular, renewable energy, personalised health, biofutures and digital economies.
“We have to continue to innovate and grow and to capitalise on the success of Advance Queensland initiatives to accelerate economic growth opportunities for Queensland in the lead up to Brisbane 2032.”
From the funding allocation, $100 million over three years will be going towards new and existing programs under Advance Queensland, which was established in 2015 to support the state’s startups and scale-ups.
Another $15 million will go towards a Queensland Innovation Precincts and Places Strategy and Action Plan, and $10.2 million to the Innovation Action Plan and Office of the Chief Entrepreneur.
The last $17 million will be netted by the Department of Environment and Science to support priority industry-science centres of excellence and partnerships, and to accelerate university commercialisation in the state.
“We have to continue to innovate and grow and to capitalise on the success of Advance Queensland initiatives to accelerate economic growth opportunities for Queensland in the lead-up to Brisbane 2032,” Palaszczuk said.
The state government also released an eight-page innovation roadmap, with six priority areas: capital attraction; research collaboration and commercialisation; talent, skills and new technologies; innovative and sustainable solutions; innovation precinct and places; and connected and inclusive innovation ecosystem.
These policies will actively help to retain talent locally and prevent the exodus to overseas tech hubs, the Premier said.
“We also want to continue to reverse the brain drain. We want to build on Queensland’s enviable lifestyle as a strategic advantage to us being able to help get our smartest people back here,” she said. “Today’s roadmap builds on that.”
With Brisbane to host the Olympic Games in 2032, the state can look to position itself as a leader in sports innovation over the next decade, Queensland Minister for Tourism, Innovation and Sport Stirling Hinchliffe said.
“Our 10-year Advance Queensland innovation roadmap empowers innovation precincts to be the engine rooms of the collaboration and research we need to bring sport-changing technology to life,” Hinchliffe said.
“With the backing of the Palaszczuk government’s Advance Queensland innovation roadmap, we’re entering a highly transformative era in Queensland’s economic history.
“The runway to 2032 is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to leverage Queensland ingenuity and know-how to fuel new economic growth and the jobs of the future.”
Sports tech will be worth $60 billion globally within the next four years, the Minister said, and is a “world enterprise Queensland is capable of leading”.
The state’s Chief Entrepreneur Wayne Gerard backed the focus on sports technology.
“As we build momentum towards hosting the 2032 Games, we will look to position ourselves as a major location for sports innovation - integrating technology to improve the experience of fans and athletes alike,” Gerard said.
The new innovation roadmap signals a new phase for Advance Queensland which will capitalise on its successes and accelerate economic growth opportunities in the state over the next decade.