Australia has successfully commercialised much of its research and development (R&D) in the agriculture and mining industries, underpinning a significant part of the country's economic development. However, Australia has been less successful at commercialising R&D in many other industrial sectors. There have been many examples of world leading Australian inventions which have not been commercialised in Australia.
The successful commercialisation of research is ultimately the profitable marketing of a product, service or process. Commercialisation involves two essential ingredients. First, research and development leading to an invention with commercial potential. Second, capabilities in a firm to mobilise the skill and resources needed to transform the invention into a saleable, competitive product, produce it and market it.
Research and development may be performed within a firm or externally. If itis external (often in a public sector research institution in Australia's case) mechanisms are needed to integrate the research outcomes to the needs of the firm.
This report is not intended to cover the many non-commercial ways research can benefit orenrich the world. Australia's public sector research institutions undertake research for many non-commercial reasons, including social benefits, defence considerations and the advancement of knowledge. The purpose of this report is to examine why Australia has a poor record of exploiting the commercial benefits of research and to suggest ways of gaining more economic benefit from Australian research.
Please note - this report became commonly known as the 'Block Report.'