Research and innovation initiatives

Product Development Partnerships

$30 million, 2015- 2017

In March 2015, the Minister for Foreign Affairs announced a contribution of $30 million (over three years) under Product Development Partnerships (PDPs) to the TB Alliance, Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV), and the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND).

PDPs are innovative public-private partnerships that co-invest in the development of new drugs and diagnostic tests for neglected diseases in the developing world. These mechanisms use public and philanthropic funding to incentivise and engage the pharmaceutical industry and academic research institutions in undertaking research and development for diseases of the developing world. A pooled funding mechanism enables Australia to co-invest with other donors, global health organisations, private philanthropic organisations, and pharmaceutical companies to help bring to market diagnostic tools and medicines for tuberculosis and malaria which are high burden diseases in the Indo-Pacific region.

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Bloomberg – Data for Health

$20 million, 2015- 2017

Announced by the Foreign Minister at the launch of the InnovationXchange on 23 March 2015, Australia is contributing A$20 million to a US$100 million partnership with Bloomberg Philanthropies on Data for Health. The partnership will build the capacity of governments in developing countries to collect and use vital health information to build better health systems. Globally, 65 per cent of deaths have no documented cause, and 40 million children are born without a birth certificate. The partnership will improve health information in three ways: improving data on births and deaths; conducting mobile phone surveys on health risk factors; and improving policymakers’ use of health data.

Building international links and Northern Australia’s capacity in tropical research

The Australian Government’s White Paper on Developing Northern Australia: Our North, Our Future sets out the government’s policy agenda for the development of northern Australia. Under this initiative, DFAT will fund activities to support collaboration between Australian and international research institutions and countries in the region on tropical health research. Tropical health issues which pose a cross-border threat in Australia’s region will be a particular focus.

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Specialist Health Service

The goal of the Specialist Health Service (SHS) is to improve the performance of Australia’s international development activities in the health sector, through contributions to health policy, strategic planning and health programming.

The SHS enables all areas of the department, in Canberra and at Post, to quickly source health technical assistance. This service is provided by Abt JTA Pty Ltd.

The SHS will assist DFAT to move beyond the traditional health and aid concepts, with innovative thinking and advice on leveraging investments, building sustainable health institutions and engaging private health actors.

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Last Updated: 30 September 2015