Researchers who collaborate with small-medium enterprises (SMEs) on new product and service innovation may qualify to apply for a new WA Government grant to accelerate start-up ideas to commercialisation.
Through the Innovation Vouchers Program (IVP), up to $20,000 per application over 12 months may be used to develop ideas and to activate academic and industry research collaborations.
UWA Business Development Director Mark Stickells said our Innovation Quarter team are empowering researchers and students to create impact through enterprise and this additional funding opportunity will help more of our people get on the pathway to a start-up.
“Through the UWA Innovation Quarter, we offer programs such as Start Something to help researchers prepare for collaborations that support SMEs. It runs in July and applications open in early May,” Mark says.
Last year the ‘Start Something Award for Research Impact through Enterprise’ was won by an industry/academic collaboration that produced a new 3D imaging system providing patients considering cosmetic procedures with an accurate prediction of their results.
Led by UWA 3D computer vision expert Winthrop Professor Bennamoun, the team includes UWA 3D computer vision researcher Dr Syed Afaq Ali Shah and an SME headed by Dr Micheal Molton, a UWA graduate and cosmetic medical practitioner, based in Adelaide.
Dr Syed Afaq Ali Shah said there were many benefits of working with an SME such as sharing expertise and more opportunities for attracting funding grants.
“Our project is currently being funded by an Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage Project grant and Dr Molton’s company Epiclinic.
“We would be interested in applying for the IVP grant to help us commercialise our product, additionally this grant will help us attract new investment, and develop networks with national and international enterprises,” he says.
Since it started in 2015, ‘Start Something’ is witnessing vibrant innovation coming from researchers who are finding unique industry solutions to healthcare, resources, information technology, engineering and social enterprise.
If you are partnered with an SME and require additional research funding, applications are open until 31 March 2017, apply for the IVP here and register your interest for The Start Something program by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.