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Policy report

The world is now at the precipice of another technological and social revolution—the quantum revolution. The countries that master quantum technology will dominate the information processing space for decades and perhaps centuries to come, giving them control and influence over sectors such as advanced manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, the digital economy, logistics, national security and intelligence.

The power of quantum computing, quantum communications and other quantum-enabled technologies will change the world, reshaping geopolitics, international cooperation and strategic competition. 

While Australia benefited from the digital revolution of the 20th century, we missed our opportunity to play a major role in the computing and communications technology sector. A similar fate doesn’t have to befall us in the upcoming quantum revolution.

Australia needs a clear quantum strategy, political leadership and an organised effort, including policy focus and public investment. Without those things, we’ll be left behind. This report focuses on analysis—and building policy recommendations—to help Australia better leverage the quantum revolution. It also recognises that quantum is just one critical technology and that what’s needed is a step change in our current policy settings related to critical and emerging technologies more generally. Hence, this report makes broader policy recommendations that serve the dual purpose of supporting that much-needed step change, while also enabling a more strategic focus on Australia’s quantum opportunities.

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Policy Brief Report No.43/2021