Research conducted by the University of Exeter Business School in the United Kingdom shows that that the Australian government’s Innovation Investment Fund allows start-up companies more scope for follow-on investments and has significantly contributed towards the supply of high-potential businesses.

The research is the product of three academics being contracted by the Federal Government to conduct an in-depth analysis of the Innovation Investment Fund (IFF).

The authors found that without the IFF, which was introduced in 1998, it is likely that fewer businesses would have started while those that did would have had significantly reduced scope for success and access to funds.

A potential treatment for severe E. coli food poisoning outbreaks that was developed more than a decade ago and might have been deployed in the recent outbreaks occurring in Europe has not progressed to clinical trials because of lack of commercial interest.

The Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Coherent X-ray Science (CXS), headquartered at the University of Melbourne is the first Australian research institution to be selected to use the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS), a new form of laser that produces X-rays, based at Stanford University in California, USA.


The CXS experiments at the LCLS have the potential to increase understanding of complex molecular problems that could lead to improved drug development.


Professor Keith Nugent, Laureate Professor and ARC Federation Fellow at the University of Melbourne and Director of CXS said it was a huge achievement and validation for the calibre of Australian led research.


“The California-based free-electron laser is the only facility currently operating in the world and the competition to come up with original and important ideas is brutal. “Our award of experimental time underlines our world-leading position in this area,” he said.


The researchers will use the beam line to trial a new technique to find the structure of membrane proteins, a discovery that will help fast track the development of targeted drugs.


About 70% of drugs on the market today depend on the activity of membrane proteins.


The CXS proposal was rated in the top ten percent of the 114 international proposals. The selection panel said the CXS proposal of investigating structure determination of biomolecules with X-ray XFEL is considered to be very promising.


CXS will begin their experiments at LCLS in January 2012.

The Victorian Premier's Award for Health and Medical Research has been awarded to  Dr Wen Qiu in recognition of her research into how breast and ovarian cancers spread.

The Australian Government has undertaken to make changes to Australia’s intellectual property system to improve protection of patented innovations and plant breeders' rights, following consideration of recommendations of two reviews by the Advisory Council on Intellectual Property.

Funding totalling $4.55 million has been allocated to continue Australia’s involvement in two major international research projects.

Twelve research projects led by regional universities have been awarded funding totalling $61.5 million under the Federal Government’s Collaborative Research Networks (CRN) program.

A listing of the top-ranked institutions for environmental sciences and ecology research in Australia and New Zealand, published on the UK site Times Higher Education, has placed Macquarie University in the top spot.

The University of Technology Sydney has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) to establish the Rajiv Gandhi Visiting Chair of Contemporary Indian Studies, ICCR's first chair in Australia.

Australia and Germany have signed a Joint Declaration on Energy and Resources Cooperation aimed at increased cooperation and research and development collaboration in the resource and energy sectors.

NewSouth Innovations Pty Ltd (NSi), the commercialisation arm of the University of NSW, has appointed a new chief executive, Dr Kevin Cullen.

Mr Alan Bansemer, formerly the Western Australian Health Commissioner  and deputy secretary to the Federal Department of Human Services and Health, has been appointed  as the new chair of the Western Australian  Technology and Industry Advisory Council (TIAC). 

The Government’s advisor on climate change, Professor Ross Garnaut, has called in  his final report for the allocation over a period of several  years of  up to $2.5 billion of the annual revenues that would be generated by the recommended $26 per tonne carbon price to research, development,  demonstration and commercialization of new low-emissions technologies.

Innovation Minister, Senator Carr has announced intended improvements to the next round of the Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) initiative in a statement to an Estimates Hearing of the Senate Economics Committee.

Federal Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research Kim Carr has announced the formation of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Researchers’ Network designed to facilitate more  opportunities for indigenous researchers and advance their work in a supportive environment.

Federal Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research Kim Carr has announced funding totalling $67 million for 219 new research partnerships under Round 2 for 2011 of the Australian Research Council's Linkage Projects scheme.

The Western Australian Science and Innovation Minister John Day has announced the creation of a new $10 million Research and Innovation Fund in 2011-12 as part of an additional commitment in this year’s budget of $54.5 million for industry, science and innovation from 2011-12 to 2014-15. 

A team of CSIRO Future Manufacturing Flagship scientists has won a major mining industry award for the invention of the highly sensitive magnetic field sensor, the technology that powers the LANDTEM mining exploration tool.

An innovative new tool designed to improve university/business research interaction has been launched by Group of Eight Australia.

The Australian Government is funding a new scholarship for an outstanding American professor to work with world-leading scientists from Australia.

A joint research report compiled by CSIRO and major aviation industry representatives shows that economically and environmentally beneficial aviation fuel is a viable proposition in the coming 20 years.

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