Anthony Morfa Thesis

Anthony Morfa Thesis-25
For universities, the traditional source of funding for research is shrinking.

For universities, the traditional source of funding for research is shrinking.In the Mapping Australian Higher Education 2018 report, published by the Grattan Institute in 2018, the Commonwealth Government financed only a third of the cost of research.Morfa was similarly enthusiastic about the potential of researchers when embedded with industry partners.“The research that is taking place at these universities is second to none and what our members are actually interested in doing is connecting with industry and understanding the challenges industry face and trying to participate and support industry as much as possible,” said Morfa.

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According to André Urfer, business development manager (acting) at WSU’s Research Engagement, Development and Innovation (REDI) Business office, the stereotypical image of a university academic is starting to break down at his institution.“Traditionally, when you think about research, researchers are sitting in offices, thinking about academically interesting problems and how to solve them.

They come up with research proposals and they submit them to competitive funding bodies and hopefully they get funded,” said Urfer.

Combining the expertise of each sector is something that Sharpe is passionate about.“We’ve got some of the best minds right here in Australia, and I’ve been able to take professors out of our great universities and onto the factory floor right across the country.

There’s an opportunity for them to learn something because we have outstanding business people in manufacturing right across the nation,” said Sharpe.

While researchers and manufacturers may seem to be worlds apart, the collaboration between the minds and focussed expertise of university academics, with the knowledge and hands-on understanding of manufactures, has the potential for innovation that can benefit businesses and universities.

At times, the barriers between higher-level research and manufacturing processes can seem insurmountable.

Putting research into practice One industry participant at the event at WSU’s Launchpad was David Fox, general manager of LA Services.

The company designs and fabricates large heat exchangers, pressure vessels, piping skids and gas pipelines.

To cap it all off, researchers who have been cloistered in the world of academic publishing can have diverging priorities from manufacturers interested in adopting a single piece of innovative technology, or updating their processes to get ahead in the market.

However, a recent confluence of disparate factors have started to break down the wall between the academy and shop floor.


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