Join us at Spark 2018

The call for submissions for this year’s Spark Festival of Australian startups is now open! Inspiring Australia (NSW) is again on the look out for startup founders with science, engineering and maths backgrounds to participate in and host statewide events. Have you got a story to share?

Last year and working in partnership with four universities and the CSIRO, we brought together 30 researchers, business owners and industry representatives at Sydney School of Entrepreneurship for a frank discussion about culture and the barriers to business-research collaboration.

Over an afternoon, around 300 participants explored topics including how researchers can take more advantage of real world R & D opportunities and how businesses can access research capability. See more about the Commercialising Research forum including a series of videos here

This year, we plan to continue the conversation in partnership with AusInnovates, a new platform that invites research startups to share stories of commercialisation success to inspire and guide others.

We’ll be taking a close look at some of the recommendations made in Innovation and Science Australia’s 2030 plan, a roadmap for the innovation system in Australia. It identifies opportunities for governments to exercise leadership and influence to accelerate the nation’s innovation performance.

We’ll also look at the qualities of successful innovators as outlined by Innovation and Science Australia’s CEO Charlie Day:

    • Ideas that create value
    • Risk taking
    • Being bold
    • Thinking global
    • Advocate of collaboration

Get involved

If you have a research based commercialisation journey you’d like to share as part of our 2018 Spark event in Sydney, or have any sage advice for those starting out, we’d love to hear from you.

Tell it like it is

We’re looking for the hard stuff as well as the success stories: lessons learned from epic fails, difficult collaborations, tricky communication issues and business setbacks are valuable to others pursuing the commercialisation journey.  Stories about overcoming unexpected difficulties can provide reality checks for those embarking on the startup journey.

Send your ideas to by 30 April 2018. We’ll be holding a meeting in late-May to flesh out this year’s program. If you’re looking to host an event outside Sydney, we can connect you with partners across the state who may like to work with you to develop an event for regional audiences.

Read more about last year’s Commercialising Research conversations at the Research Futures channel co-produced by Inspiring Australia (NSW) and Refraction Media with support from For more information about Spark Festival visit the website.