The annual Crossroads Report produced by StartupAUS has become a key piece of research into the startup community that helps inform government action, with both the Coalition’s Angus Taylor and Labor’s Ed Husic yesterday saying the 2015 report had helped in the development of their respective party’s innovation policies.
Now in the process of producing the 2016 report, StartupAUS is looking to hear from startups around Australia about their experiences in a series of workshops to ensure their voices are heard.
The first workshop will be held at Sydney coworking hub Fishburners on Monday, with more to be announced around the country shortly.
The workshops and preparation of the 2016 report comes at an interesting time, with the Labor Party announcing earlier this week that, if elected, it would be shifting the $360,000 in funding set aside for StartupAUS by the Coalition towards devising a strategy to boost the development of regional innovation communities.
The Coalition announced last month the launch of a partnership with StartupAUS that will see the organisation produce research on a range of topics covering entrepreneurship and innovation, with StartupAUS to receive to $360,000 in funding across the next three years. The first report is due in October.
The announcement was met with criticism from the startup community, who questioned the organisation’s independence given it would be accepting funding from the body its job it is to lobby.
With this in mind, Labor announced this week that the terms of this grant would change if it is elected.
Labor MP Richard Marles said, “Federal Labor has taken the view this grant needs sharper focus on work that will have a meaningful impact: mapping out ways for regional Australia to generate new firms and jobs beyond a few metropolitan cities.
“It would be expected that StartupAUS would draw together startup founder and investor expertise within Australia to frame an effective game plan to boost regional innovation activity.”
In response, StartupAUS CEO Alex McCauley said the organisation will continue to work with both sides of politics, and is excited to be in a position where both sides of politics are passionate about commissioning independent research into the sector.
“It’s great to see both parties continue to recognise and champion the value and credibility of the contribution StartupAUS continues to make to the policy space. Ed Husic has been a long-time passionate supporter of the work that we do.
“As always, our Board of Directors ultimately drives the research priorities of StartupAUS. We look forward to working with whichever party forms the next government to agree on areas of importance to the national startup ecosystem, and to helping deliver insights into those areas.”
Image: Alex McCauley. Source: Supplied.