Entries are open for the $65,000 The Australian Innovation Challenge, honouring excellence in fields from minerals and energy to environmental science and community services.
Now is your chance to showcase your bright idea by entering the awards, which are run by The Australian in association with Shell with the support of the federal Department of Industry and Science.
As previous winners and finalists attest, the Challenge, now in its fifth year, is helping to drive breakthroughs through to commercialisation or adoption.
Past entrants are already reaping the benefits of the awards – prestige and ongoing publicity in Australia’s national daily newspaper as well as much-needed prize money.
Antony Schinckel and his team at the CSIRO won the Manufacturing, Construction and Infrastructure prize, as well as the overall prize, last year for revolutionary technology at the centre of the world’s most powerful radio telescope – the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder in outback Western Australia.
The five professional categories open to specialists (including scientists, engineers, technologists, educators and innovators in community services) are:
• Environment, Agriculture and Food
• Minerals and Energy
• Manufacturing, Construction and Infrastructure
• Education and Community Services
The professional category winners will receive prizes of $5000. The overall winner will receive a further $25,000. A sixth category, Backyard Innovation, is open to the public and has a $10,000 prize. The Young Innovators category, which is open to students aged 21 years or under, has a $5000 prize.
Entries in all categories will be judged against the following equally weighted criteria.
• science or technological excellence and novelty
• potential impact
• end user benefit and sustainability
• adoption and take-up (including plans for paths to market for early-stage development work).
The awards are open to individuals and teams, and you can enter more than one project. International collaborative projects are eligible as long as the work was driven from Australia.
The awards recognise innovation purely for the public good as well as breakthroughs with a direct commercial focus.
Entries close at 2359 AEST Monday, August 17, 2015.
For entry details visit http://www.theaustralian.com.au/innovationchallenge