The Research Partnerships Lead at RMIT University has become the new Chair of Knowledge Commercialisation Australasia.
Quin Chang, who has been on the Board for three years, says his goal is to nurture and represent a sector that is vital to Australia and New Zealand’s innovation ecosystems.
“There needs to be a renewed focus on the importance of knowledge transfer, and that space between industry and academia,” Chang says.
KCA currently has more than 750 individual and 23 organisational members, who have faced a challenging 18 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “Despite that, they have outperformed their pre-COVID achievements, which is a tribute to their tenacity,” Chang says.
Commercialisation revenue has more than doubled over the past two years, as research powers Australia’s post-pandemic recovery. According to the Survey of Commercialisation Outcomes from Public Research, which was conducted by KCA, hundreds of start-ups and spin-outs contributed to a $242.3 million dollar return on investment in 2020 – up from $119m in 2018.
Chang applauded outgoing Chair, Dr. Erin Rayment, for her “outstanding leadership” over the past three years. “Erin worked hard to advocate for the profession, launched the annual SCOPR report, and ensured KCA has strong foundations going forward,” Chang says.
“I’m so proud of the KCA Board and how our members have thrived during the challenges of the past few years,” Dr. Rayment says. “I’m confident that under Quin’s leadership, KCA will continue to strengthen the research commercialisation community across Australia and New Zealand.”
The new Chair says KCA’s board is “strong, talented, diverse, and deeply experienced”, and he’s honoured to be leading the team.
A future focus is deepening the connection between members, government and industry. “I want to make sure members’ voice are heard in the mix,” Chang says. “and have us work more closely with government and industry to build a vibrant and thriving ecosystem together.”