KiwiNet News 10 November 2011

Australasian commercialisation professionals gather to focus on innovation through collaboration

10 November 2011

Commercialisation professionals from Australia and New Zealand are gathering in Auckland today for a two-day conference focussing on strategies for improving the innovation system through better collaboration. The annual KCA (Knowledge Commercialisation Australasia) conference, designed to share best practises in the technology transfer field from New Zealand, Australia and across the globe, is being held in New Zealand for the first time.

Andy Sierakowski, Chair KCA and Director OII UWA says, "The role of our universities and public sector research institutes in supporting national innovation is critical but it cannot be achieved in isolation. Effective models to facilitate innovation cannot be based on market push and will require many stakeholders, both public and private sector, to work together to identify and develop innovative new products and services."

Duncan Mackintosh, Vice Chair KCA and Chief Executive of WaikatoLink says, "We need to invest in developing our global competitiveness. The ability to take innovations and commercialise them can add great value to our economy. We stand to benefit a great deal by collaborating with our counterparts in New Zealand and Australia to more effectively transfer innovations to the global marketplace."

A key conference theme is the innovation cycle and the interactions required to achieve success. Discussions include the importance of the university and public sector research organisations in the innovation pipeline and the importance and methodologies of collaboration between these parties and the private sector.

Delegates span all sectors and are actively involved in adding value along the "Idea to Market pipeline" including tech transfer specialists, R&D managers from the private and public sectors, professional service providers, investors and managers and policy analysts from all tiers of government.

Speakers include: Brett Cornwell, Associate Vice Chancellor for Commercialization, Texas A&M University System; Katie Petersen, Manager, iBridge Network and iStart, Kauffman Foundation; Tenby Powell, Chairman WaikatoLink Limited; David Hughes, Group General Manager Commercial, Plant & Food Research; Nick Mathiou, Griffith Enterprise, Griffith University; Jan Bingley, General Manager IP and Licensing CSIRO Operations; Hon Dr Wayne Mapp, New Zealand Minister of Science and Innovation and Associate Minister for Tertiary Education and Economic Development; Robin Rasor, Director of Licensing, University of Michigan and President of AUTM; Kevin Cullen, Chief Executive Officer, NewSouth Innovations Pty Limited; David Henderson, CEO UniQuest Pty Ltd; Duncan Mackintosh, Chief Executive of WaikatoLink Limited; Peter Lee, CEO Auckland UniServices Limited; Rod Hill, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Industry Engagment and Commercialisation, Monash University; Geoff Sadlier, Director of Strategy, Research and Ministerial Support, IP Australia; Craig Humphris, Senior Associate, Wrays; Ajay Jagtiani, Shareholder, Vedder Price P.C.; Brett O'Riley, Deputy Chief Executive, Business Innovation and Investment, Ministry of Science and Innovation; and Claire Dixon, Program Manager, Innovation Interchange & Senior Water Engineer, GHD.

Platinum sponsor of the event is the Ministry of Science and Innovation. Gold sponsors are Auckland UniServices Limited, Industrial Research Limited, WaikatoLink Limited, and Wrays. Silver sponsors are CSIRO, Griffith Enterprise, Research & Innovation - University of Canterbury, and StrategiizeT.

A pre-conference workshop on strengthening the Australasian innovation ecosystem was facilitated by the Kiwi Innovation Network (KiwiNet), a commercialisation consortium of universities and crown research institutes in New Zealand.

For more information on the KCA Conference 2011 'Innovation through Collaboration' see ""

For further information please contact:

Sandra Lukey
Shine Group
Phone: (03) 374 6753; Cell: +64 21 2262 858