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Taking the innovation plunge

What does it take to be a successful scientific innovator? Geoff Rogers, winner of the 2018 Prime Minister’s Prize for New Innovators, talks to Gerd Winter about starting young and getting the right people on board.

Geoff’s top tips

  • Don’t let age be a barrier to enterprise, but be honest about whether it’s right for you.
  • Finding the right people is crucial, both as collaborators and as ‘compassionate investors’.
  • Don’t be afraid to go back to the drawing board if your concept isn’t working.
  • Take the opportunity to nurture future commercial interest through networking.
  • Make the most of any help that the government offers, such as tax breaks. 

In 2015, former Australian chief scientist Ian Chubb released a report, Boosting High-Impact Entrepreneurship in Australia. It called for a cultural change, encouraging “entrepreneurs to capitalise on science, technology, engineering and mathematics through universities”.

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