The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) has opened up a new round of its Innovate to Grow program, targeting small- to medium-sized enterprises (SME) across the cyber security and digital technology sectors.
The program provides research and development (R&D) knowledge, with resources and mentors available to help SMEs develop R&D ideas, and is funded by the federal government’s Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources through its Cyber Security Skills Partnership Innovation Fund.
On completion of the program, participants can apply to work with CSIRO researchers and access dollar-matched R&D funding through its Kickstart program.
“SMEs are the lifeblood of Australia and many have innovative business ideas and solutions that could help mitigate cyber security threats and deliver a positive impact to other Australian businesses and the economy,” said Marthie Grobler, principal research scientist at CSIRO’s Data61.
“These businesses tend to face a myriad of challenges in bringing their ideas to life, namely investment of money, time and resources.
“This is where a program like Innovate to Grow, which is free to access, is so valuable for Australian businesses.”
Innovate to Grow has seen rising interest over the last two years, with CSIRO’s SME Connect program advisor Liz Crompton adding that the addition of the new industries will open the program up further.
“The expansion of the cyber security program to include digital technology, means that more SMEs across the sector will have the opportunity to take advantage of this free program,” Ms Crompton said.
“The program is giving SMEs the opportunity to develop their ideas into a real-world R&D project, leading to potential commercial outputs, revenue and/or employment growth.”
The program is open to applications, with it starting on 12 October.