Government that's fit for the digital age

Objective 11 — Collaborate with other sectors, including small and medium-sized enterprises, community organisations and academia

Objective status
In progress

We are drawing on a diversity of thinking and leading-edge skills from businesses, academia and the Australian community to solve real, intractable problems. This means that we’re simplifying the process for small and medium enterprises to compete for government business. We’re making it easier for academics to access public data to support their research through data.gov.au and we’re engaging with community organisations and individuals to really understand your needs. We’re also finding ways to bring these sectors together to make the most of their different skills and to create better solutions for you.

$12m+ in grants to SMEs

The Business Research and Innovation Initiative has provided 44 small and medium sized enterprises (SME’s) with feasibility study and proof of concept grants, totalling more than $12 million in total to develop innovative solutions for specific government policy and service delivery challenges.

$870m+ contract value

The Digital Marketplace published 2525 opportunities for government work and awarded over $870 million in contract value as at November 2019. Over 70% of the contract value was awarded to SMEs.

Renewed MoU between DTA and AIIA

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between AIIA and the Digital Transformation Agency was renewed in August 2019 to continue strong industry and government collaboration for better services for all Australians.

A large crowd of attendees at the Digital Summit.

We are drawing on a diversity of thinking and leading-edge skills from businesses, academia and the Australian community to solve real, intractable problems.

Case studies

Digital Marketplace

The Digital Marketplace makes it easier for buyers in Commonwealth, state, territory and local governments to work with digital businesses of all sizes. It has simplified how sellers access government work, particularly SMEs, and it has increased the volume and value of opportunities available for tender.

The Digital Marketplace became the first panel of its kind in the Australian Government that is open to new sellers 365 days a year. New sellers no longer need to wait for the usual opening cycles of government panels, which can be anywhere between 1 to 3 years. They can apply to join the Digital Marketplace at a time that suits them.

“Ask the Market” was launched on the Digital Marketplace in 2019, so that buyers could ask potential service providers and experts about their solutions to a problem or project. use the expertise of industry to develop innovative solutions to a problem or a project.

Government buyers use Ask the Market when they have a problem to solve and they want businesses to suggest, not just deliver, the solution. This means that industry can showcase innovative solutions, technologies and methodologies in response to government needs. Ask the Market proposals can provide expressions of interest, respond to requests for information and suggest small-scale experiments including prototypes, products or proof of concepts.

Digital Transformation Agency

Cooperative Research Centres

We are supporting Australia’s growing industries to compete globally. We fund collaborations between industry, academia and the community that improve industry’s competitiveness, productivity and sustainability. Cooperative Research Centres (CRCs) must include at least one Australian business and one research organisation working together to solve industry problems. Cooperative Research Centres Projects (CRC Projects) need to include two businesses (one must be an SME) and one research organisation developing important new technologies, products and services collectively. In 2018-19, there were 30 CRCs and 89 CRC Projects across a variety of sectors, including the manufacturing, mining, health care, agriculture and the environment sectors.

In 2019, we established new CRCs in four industries — the future food systems, offshore food and energy production, space and future battery industries. These four CRCs leverage over $709 million in cash and in-kind contributions from research, industry and community organisations. We also established 32 CRC Projects, which included additional funding for advanced manufacturing and artificial intelligence focused applications. These 32 CRC Projects leverages over $151 million in cash and in-kind contributions from their project partners. The program is increasing the capacity of Australian businesses and industries to solve real problems in a way that is leading-edge globally.

Department of Industry, Innovation and Science

Business Research and Innovation Initiative (BRII)

BRII provides SMEs with grants to develop innovative solutions for specific government policy and service delivery challenges. BRII supports a more agile government because several ideas are tested through a feasibility study then allowing the best applicants to progress to develop a proof of concept.

BRII has provided 44 grants, totalling more than $12 million and supported 35 innovative SMES to further develop their solutions. Several SMEs were supported in Round one and two to address digital project challenges. One example is Next Paradigm, who was granted $100,000 to conduct a 3-month feasibility study to uplift government’s digital capability. They have completed user research and outlined prototypes that could help us to understand the best way to address the problem.

Department of Industry, Innovation and Science

The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) and the Digital Transformation Agency

We are collaborating with businesses to build better, more innovative services. In August 2019, the Digital Transformation Agency renewed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Australian Information Industry Association. The MOU encourages strong continued industry and government collaboration and facilitates engagement and insights from leading digital organisations from across the globe. This includes consultation to support initiatives to make government fit for the digital age, such as the Digital Transformation Strategy, the Digital Marketplace and Trusted Digital Identity Framework.

Digital Transformation Agency