Australia: Creativity 1 Innovation 19

Australia is ranked no. 1 on Creativity and no. 19 on Innovation worldwide. 

The Creativity score is based on the Global Creativity Index 2015 which ranked Australia as the top country in the world. This result was based on 3 “T”s (technology, talent and tolerance) and connects well with the Australian Ideas Boom. 

Many find this result surprising. Taking a positive view it indicates that we have significant potential for innovation

The Innovation score is based on the Global Innovation Index 2016 produced by the World Intellectual Property Organisation which ranked Australia 19. 

Our challenge is to keep our creativity ranking and to improve our innovation ranking.

But why the difference in the first place? We can quickly guess that we’re not good at commercialising ideas in Australia.

The 2015 Startup Muster research report said that getting funding is the most reported external challenge for Australian startups (40%). Funding is usually only open to ideas with a profitability model and a track record. There is little investment at the seed level in Australia. The only investors that will take a risk on an idea alone are seed investors, maybe early stage investors if you’re really lucky, and these investors are hard to convince in Australia. 

So how do we improve our innovation rating?

There are organisations that aim to foster innovation. For example the CSIRO has introduced a program called ON to create stronger connections between sci-tech researchers and commercialisation partners and help ensure the brightest ideas are realised then succeed on the world stage. The next ON Accelerate program commences in January 2017 and you can register interest at ON.

An Australian Government Senate enquiry, published in December last year, considered the Australian innovation system, describing innovation as “ideas applied successfully”, and recommended that:

-investment in research and development is increased and that funding is predictable and secure

-an independent government agency is established with a consistent approach to innovation policy across the whole of government

-measures to enhance collaboration and the free flow of knowledge between the university system and the private sector are introduced

-the role of local and regional innovation ecosystems is reinforced and

-the education system has a central focus in the long-term innovation strategy, thereby acknowledging the central importance of the interplay between the STEM subjects and the humanities, social sciences and creative industries.

A further report is being planned which will hopefully progress these recommendations.

IdeaSpies is new platform to encourage innovation by encouraging us to see the clever ideas around us. You can see, rate, share and post inspiring clever ideas on this platform which stimulates creativity as a basis for innovation.

The ideas that are posted are explained simply. They’re shown by category – artistic, dining, healthcare, NFP and well-being. You can rate them- the site shows the most popular as well as the most recent.

You can subscribe to get ideas weekly. You can also register/login to comment on ideas as well as post ideas you see. There’s currently a competition on the site to encourage you to share ideas.

Ideas and feedback are very welcome.

Lynn Wood

Chief Idea Spy


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