Responding to the loss of sovereign ability to make plastics – by Shane West

While issues such as quantum computing attract political action, Australia is losing the sovereign ability to manufacture even basic products such as plastics and downstream products such as paint. According to Shane West, the closure of plastic raw material production by Qenos requires government intervention. How to respond to the loss of Qenos – Australia…

70 economists back Future made in Australia, blast Productivity Commission

Channel Nine media has revealed that a group of 70 economists from the nation’s most important universities support the recently announced Future Made in Australia policy. The exclusive story by well respected journalist Shane Wright in the SMH newspaper also puts a rocket up the Productivity Commission which has continued its long standing antipathy to…

Towards 3% R&D – Knowledge diffusion a key by Elliot Duff

Today in our editorial series – Towards 3% R&D – Turbocharging Australia’s Innovation Effort – Elliot Duff identifies the issue as a lack of capability in diffusing knowledge through the economy to its grass roots. Knowledge Diffusion in Australia While doubling R&D spending to 3% will help turbo-charge the Australian innovation system, it is essential…

Towards 3% R&D – continuous improvement in manufacturing by Serena Ross

Today in our editorial series – Towards 3% R&D – Turbocharging Australia’s Innovation Effort – Serena Ross contrasts innovation to be new to the world, and continuous improvement – the lifeblood of her company, Circuitwise Electronics. Australia’s innovation effort can be improved by a greater focus on ‘ordinary’ innovation. In contrast to deep-tech or R&D-focused…

Economists say ‘yes’ to industry policy (just not in Australia)

By Peter Roberts Australian economists have long been seen by manufacturers as the enemy as, led by those staffing the Productivity Commission, they have vigorously fought against any form of activist industry policy by government. The view is that policing backing even new industry such as green energy technologies, 3D printing or critical metals processing…

Productivity Commission fails as others forge ahead – by Tim Buckley

In recent days @AuManufacturing readers have critiqued federal governments efforts to ‘reform the Productivity Commission (see below). Here in our final part of a series, Tim Buckley argues Australia cannot afford more of the same from the PC, which continued to misread profound societal and economic change underway globally. Treasurer Jim Chalmers’ announcement yesterday of…

How can we refrom the PC when we can no longer even track productivity – by John Sheridan

The federal treasurer Jim Chalmers has given the new chair of the Productivity Commission Chris Barrett an impossible job, argues John Sheridan. If we can no longer measure productivity in a digital age – and we can’t – how can any amount of reform of the PC help boost national productivity? Workplace productivity comparisons mean…