Innovation, from high profile scientific discoveries to lower profile changes in processes or practices, is crucial to Australia's economic development. However, its impact on the wider community is usually relatively small. Promotion of innovation across all sectors is required to produce the biggest changes. Richard Curtain focuses on the roles of the vocational education and training (VET) sectors of Finland and Singapore - countries with strong track records in innovation. He argues that a whole-of-government approach supporting a national innovation system could benefit Australia.
Further, the national VET sector is ideally placed to have a more direct role in the promotion and diffusion of smaller scale innovations provided incentives in the form of specific funding are put in place. This activity could also enhance the sector's links with business, particularly small to medium sized enterprises and those in regional areas.