CSIRO to shutter ON startup program

Four years after it was unveiled as part of the National Innovation and Science Agenda, the CSIRO is preparing to shutter its $20 million entrepreneur-focused science accelerator program known as ON, writes James Riley. 

THE FOUR-YEAR funding horizon for ON will draw to a close at the end of the financial year, with the CSIRO preparing to wind up the program at the conclusion of a final Demo Day for its ON Prime and ON Accelerator next May.

The ON program was announced in late 2015 as a part of former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s NISA – the Ideas Boom – with its $20 million funding package over four-years from the start of the 2016-17 financial year.

The ON program had been part of a government effort to improve the commercialisation outcomes for publicly funded research, and to boost the numbers of startup companies coming out of institutional research.

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The scientist who predicted the bushfire emergency four decades ago

Dr Tom Beer’s pioneering 1980s research at CSIRO into bushfires and climate change has, to his dismay, proved all too accurate, writes Graham Readfearn.

FROM HIS LOUNGE IN BRUNSWICK, Melbourne, 72-year-old Dr Tom Beer has been watching the fury of an unprecedented Australian bushfire season unfolding on his television screen.

“I feel really sorry for the firefighters who’ve got extraordinarily tough jobs ahead, and it’s only going to get tougher,” says Beer.

“But I feel maybe I was not enough of a prophet crying in the wilderness.”

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CSIRO Postdocs deserve greater respect

Yes, he really did say it.

“We also have a lot of students that work in CSIRO and, we think of them as interns but the technical name for them is, Postdocs,” said Chief Executive Larry Marshall at Senate Estimates in October 2019.

These are kids that have just graduated, and they come into CSIRO to actually work on an industry project so that they’re more employable by industry.

“They tend to cycle through as well.”

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