The Victorian Infection and Immunity Network Industry Alliance received funding in 2013-2014 from the Victorian Government’s Department of State Development, Business and Innovation to enhance the Network’s industry engagement activities.
Through the Collaborative Networks Pilot Program, VIIN established an Industry Alliance with the following goals:
- Engaging Victorian businesses with VIIN’s Supporter organisations and meeting the needs of the businesses we engage;
- Building a collaborative culture and strategic partnerships between businesses and our Network to improve commercialisation of the Network’s research outcomes;
- Maximising the uptake of innovations, including technologies, across Victorian firms;
- Improving the management of knowledge assets in VIIN’s Supporter organisations and in industry to enable and promote exploitation of those assets in the Victorian market place;
- Improving the opportunities for and performance of licensing technology;
- Providing incentives for a more responsive R&D sector which will make a greater contribution to the Victorian economy;
- Delivering environmental, health, social and economic benefits through our industry engagement activities; and,
- Developing effective, innovative and adaptive models for collaboration.
The VIIN Industry Alliance has run several activities aimed at increasing opportunities for VIIN scientists and representatives from industry to work together to translate the VIIN’s research outcomes and to meet the R&D needs of the businesses we engage with.
1) Networking events
Bridging the Gap: How to engage with Industry Workshop
Watermark Intellectual Asset Management and the VIIN Industry Alliance are proud to present comprehensive 2-hour workshops discussing how to bridge the gap between scientific researchers and industry. Learn about intellectual property, licensing, freedom-to-operate and how to successfully pitch your project to industry.
Workshops are scheduled for May 2016 in Clayton and Parkville. Find out more >
Previous events - Biotechnology and Patentable Subject Matter Breakfast Workshop
At the 2016 Lorne Infection and Immunity Conference, Intellectual property professionals from Watermark Intellectual Asset Management hosted a breakfast seminar. They drew on recent events and experiences to provide practical insights into the changes taking place in Australia in relation to biotech patent eligibility, how this relates to patent eligibility changes which have taken place in the United States and how best to manage the associated risk.
Previous events - The Lorne Infection and Immunity Business Breakfast
The VIIN Industry Alliance hosted a Business Breakfast for industry representatives and scientists at the Lorne Infection and Immunity Conference, Friday 21 February 2014.
Participants had a wonderful networking opportunity at the beautiful Mantra Lorne Resort in regional Victoria, where Collaborative Project Grant recipients were announced and Dr David Reddy, the CEO of the Medicines for Malaria Venture, spoke on the value of public-private partnerships for solving infectious disease challenges.
Previous events – Emerging Superbugs BioMelbourne BioBreakfast
In November 2013, the VIIN Industry Alliance and BioMelbourne Network joined together to co-host a BioBreakfast on “Emerging Superbugs – why we should be concerned and why we need a new approach”.
The event featured Prof Lindsay Grayson, the Director of Infectious Diseases at Austin Health; Prof Elizabeth Hartland, Head of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology; Ms Cathy Cropp, Project Manager for BioDiem Ltd, a Melbourne-based company developing a novel antimicrobial compound; and Ms Suzanne Schultz from the University of Adelaide, who researches business models for incentivising the pharmaceutical industry to invest in antibiotic development.
The breakfast was extremely well attended by industry representatives from Victoria’s biotech and pharmaceutical companies and associated industries, VIIN scientists, the State Government and peak bodies.
Previous events – The VIIN Industry Alliance Roadshow
In May 2013, more than 150 VIIN scientists networked with representatives from Victoria’s biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies at the VIIN Industry Alliance Roadshow and Research Showcases at Clayton, Geelong and Parkville.
These events showcased the research of infection and immunity scientists working at VIIN Supporter organisations and provided an opportunity for the VIIN Industry Alliance’s industry partners to identify potential collaborators from academia.
Industry partners CSL, Biota, Genera Biosystems, Nexvet Biopharma, Affinity Biosciences, BioDiem Ltd, World Courier and Perkin Elmer were all well represented at these events, as well as business development firms, including P&R Wood Partners, Medicines Development, Biocomm Squared, D3 Ltd, Brandon Capital, Phillips Ormonde Fitzpatrick Intellectual Property and Watermark Intellectual Asset Management.
2) Collaborative Project Grants
The VIIN Industry Alliance’s Collaborative Project Grants provide seed funding for 'proof-of-concept' experiments which bring together a VIIN scientist and a business working in the infection and immunity sector.
Grant applications were assessed on the criteria of collaboration potential, value creation, entrepreneurship and management, clear deliverables, identified market need, potential IP space, strategic fit and application of funds.
Successful projects were announced at the 2014 Lorne Infection and Immunity Conference's Business Breakfast, and will make use of the VIIN Industry Alliance’s seed funding to generate data for longer-term collaborative projects, which could be supported by NHMRC Development Grants, ARC Linkage Grants or the Medical Research Commercialisation Fund.
Two rounds of Collaborative Project grants have been awarded, involving six different industry partners ranging from small Victorian start-ups to large international pharmaceutical companies.
3) Industry placements
The VIIN Industry Alliance is working with supporter companies from Victoria’s biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries to identify opportunities for placements for VIIN students and early-career researchers.
Do you want to do a placement?
Opportunities are limited, but please make an ENQUIRY to express your interest.
Are you a company who wants to host a placement?
The VIIN Industry Alliance Project Officer would be pleased to discuss a placement with you. Please ENQUIRE to make contact.