The National Innovation and Science Agenda is a crucial step in Australia’s transformation into a knowledge economy, says the Association of Australian Convention Bureaux.
Welcoming the initiatives under the program, AACB chief executive Andrew Hiebl said meetings and exhibitions were at the heart of the ideas boom.
“Wherever fine minds meet, ideas are exchanged and business is done. Whether a major convention, conference or seminar, meetings are where knowledge happens.
“If we are to foster innovation in the industries of tomorrow, the business events sector stands as a partner with the federal government to help make meetings of minds.
“The next wave of industries, from biotechnology and medicine to advanced manufacturing and information technology relies on the exchange of ideas.
In a 2014 report on the economic and strategic value of Australia’s international business events sector, Deloitte Access Economics found that: “The business events sector also augments economic activity well beyond directly-measurable metrics, underpinning knowledge creation and exchange, innovation and investment”.
This economic activity goes far beyond the direct tourism benefits communities enjoy through the tens of thousands of conference delegates staying in their cities.
“The federal government has already recognised the significant trade and investment potential that the business events sector brings Australia through the release earlier this year by trade minister Andrew Robb of the Austrade and Tourism Australia joint Attracting Business Events to Australia framework.
“What we see in this week’s $1.1b National Science and Innovation Agenda is further recognition of science, technology and medicine as drivers of real economic growth into the future”.
“We congratulate the Prime Minister and his government for staking this rich ground for future growth of the Australian economy.
“As the Prime Minister outlined in his remarks at the launch of the strategy, deeper collaboration is needed to increase the level of engagement between businesses, universities and the research sector to commercialise ideas and solve problems. Meetings make collaboration possible and convention bureaux attract strategically important meetings to their destinations.”
“The $36 million Global Innovation Strategy included in the agenda will spur collaboration, much of this will happen at business events like investor conferences and start-up forums,” said Mr Hiebl.
“The AACB is excited at the prospect of an #ideasboom in Australia and looks forward to working with ministers and assistant ministers in the innovation portfolio such as Christopher Pyne, Josh Frydenberg, Wyatt Roy and Karen Andrews to position business events as one of the enablers of the knowledge economy.”