In April 2017 Australia’s Chief Scientist, Dr Alan Finkel, led an innovation delegation to Germany and Switzerland, brining senior representatives from Australia’s Industry Growth Centres and other peak bodies. The Australia now 2017 science and innovation program included high-level forums and workshops, business matching events, and interactive dialogues.
The program significantly raised Australia’s science and innovation profile in a country that excels in both—Germany was ranked 2nd in Scientific American’s Global Science Scorecard and 9th in the Global Innovation Index in 2017.
A two-part workshop split between Berlin and Munich encouraged delegates to learn from Australian and German industry-research collaboration models. The workshop offered a picture of how Germany is developing and supporting its research and innovation agenda, drawing on the expertise of Germany’s leading edge clusters and business representatives.
The Australian Embassy partnered with high-profile German organisations, including the Falling Walls Foundation and the Potsdam Institute on Climate Impact Research, to draw in a broad network of German and Australian business, start-up, academic and political contacts.
The Delegation was a recommendation of the Australia-Germany Advisory Group report agreed by Chancellor Merkel and Prime Minister Turnbull in November 2015, and delivered on the bilateral outcomes of Joint Science and Technology meetings held in October 2016 between Australia with Germany, Switzerland and France.