In Summary

Collaboration across all levels of government, across national borders, across industry and through excellence in applied research and development is what is needed to bring our manufacturing industry into the next era, an audience was told at the recent US Ambassador’s Innovation Roundtable.

Swinburne University of Technology hosted the event, which recognised Victoria’s strength in advanced manufacturing by bringing together researchers, business and government representatives along with secondary school and university students in a series of panel discussions.

Speakers included the US Ambassador to Australia, John Berry, Federal Minister for Small Business, Bruce Billson, US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Manufacturing, Chandra Brown, Victoria’s Lead Scientist, Leonie Walsh, Swinburne Vice-Chancellor, Professor Linda Kristjanson, and representatives from Boeing, Lockheed Martin and the Australian Advanced Manufacturing Council.

The diverse range of presenters highlighted US - Australian innovation success stories, and discussed the advanced manufacturing opportunities of the future.

“Manufacturing remains critically important to both the developing and the advanced world. It raises our living standards and is a source of innovation and competitiveness,” Professor Kristjanson told the audience.

“New and innovative responses are needed to face the challenges that have come with this change and discover the opportunities that it brings. No government can do this alone. No university can do this alone.

“Only through collaboration across all levels of government, across national borders, across industry and through excellence in applied research and development can we enter the next era of global growth and innovation.”‌

A program of panel discussions was followed by a special forum that gave secondary and university students a chance to quiz Ambassador Berry and panelists about career pathways and opportunities in science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship in our two countries.

School students also learnt from business and entrepreneurs how their studies could be successfully translated into a career in advanced manufacturing.

This was the third innovation-themed conversation Ambassador Berry has convened in cities across Australia, with further roundtables to reach other cities throughout 2015.

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