UNSW calls on startups to complete survey aimed at helping shape Australian Innovation Policy

17/11/2015

024_unsw-sllUNSW Campus in Randwick. Image courtesy of Wikipedia.

If you’re a startup entrepreneur in Australia, hopefully, by now, you’ll have seen our social media campaign asking you to to participate in a survey that will inform innovation policy. Hopefully, you’ll also take the 10 short minutes to complete the survey.

This survey is aimed at reviewing the myriad of support organisations for entrepreneurs, how well they work, and then seeing if there’s a way for the government to amplify good support.

Yes, this is about accelerators. Yes, this is also about other support organisations. We want to know how you’ve been supported by incubators, co-working spaces, mentoring programs, structured workshop series, angels or angel groups. If you’re a DIY entrepreneur, we’ll also want to hear from you, to hear your thoughts on why you remained ‘independent’.

The ‘big’ questions we are looking to answer are: what impact have these organisations had on participating startups and the broader ecosystem, what impact they are aiming for, and can – or should – their impact be amplified through innovation policy?

The project is run by UNSW and funded by the Australian Department of Industry, Innovation & Science, who are interested in the policy implications regarding startups and and the organisations that support them. The emphasis is nominally on accelerators, but remains inclusive of organisations that provide co-working space, mentoring, seed capital, or structured workshops.

These questions are relevant to policy, to startups, their supporting organisations, and spillover industries, who are lacking data. This project is not only inclusive of a diverse range of support organisations, but also of startups that have blazed their own trail. We also need a comparison set of startups that have not drawn on support organisations, i.e., independent startups.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and the Department of Industry, Innovation & Science (DIIS) have some important decisions to make on how to make Australia globally competitive. I expect that they will look for supporting evidence of what is working, both here and overseas, to try and leverage that, before re-inventing wheels.

Both this survey and the report due in a few short weeks aim to provide that evidence. Along the way, they will also provide an impartial summary of different types of support organisations, including what their business models are and what performance metrics – and timescales – are relevant to them.

Click here to fill out this 10 minute survey!

The University of New South Wales is one of four major shareholders of ATP Innovations – including the Australian National University, the University of Technology Sydney, and the University of Sydney.

This article originally appeared on Startup Daily.

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