Are you a recent or current UniSA student starting a business?

Do you have a great idea that could turn into the next start up?

UniSA students and recent graduates (up to 12 months) can apply for up to $50,000 to kickstart their business idea! Start your adventure now by applying for Venture Catalyst funding. You can receive up to $50,000 to help you realise your great idea.

For further information see or contact Jasmine Vreugdenburg on 8302 5477 or



Understanding Big Data as a competitive advantage

Our increasingly intelligent and interconnected world is bringing huge changes to our lives and the way our businesses exist and operate. Through increasing business transaction processing systems, social media and online commerce to name a few areas, enormous amounts of data are now produced and collected. It has been estimated that more data was collected during 2012 than in the whole of the remaining history of our world.

What does that mean for businesses today and how can businesses innovate using the increasing amount of Big Data existing and available to organisations? Professor Andy Koronios of UniSA highlighted at a recent seminar for northern businesses how Big Data can be the most valuable asset an organisation can have, and that it can be transformative for those organisations that understand how to use it well.

Specifically, Big Data can provide higher volumes of accurate data to assist in better, more sophisticated decision making and assist with forecasting and prediction. It can also lead to narrower segmentation and help to provide customers with more precisely tailored products and services. It can also create new business models for creating value through new products and services.

So some practical advice when it comes to approaching Big Data:

  • Don’t let the ‘Big’ scare you.
  • Identify where your organisation is in terms of the data it collects and uses.
  • Ensure that your data is well managed and accurately captured.
  • Sharpen your organisation’s business analytics skills.
  • Focus on the biggest value opportunity where Big Data might deliver benefit.
  • Take small steps in working with Big Data.
  • Leverage free or nearly free tools to help you manage and work with Big Data. There are many tools available on the internet that can be leveraged to help organisations such as web analytics.

With these thoughts in mind it might be the right time to seize the opportunity to stop your organisation from drowning in data and to instead develop useful management information. Harnessing Big Data might just be your organisation’s first steps to innovation.

For further information and further detail from the Big Data seminar, please contact Lisa McDonald.

New partnerships to lead innovation and enterprise growth

As the manufacturing sector in South Australian continues to face challenges, there is now a compelling need to find transformative ways to transition the economic base of our state and northern Adelaide.

Two new partnerships of the University of South Australia aim to help drive innovation through the development of three new Centres. These new Centres will benefit SME’s, industry and students, and will play a key role in building future capacity.

The first partnership, underpinned by a $5million co-contribution from Hills Limited and the State Government, and in partnership with Flinders University will see the development of two new Centres – the Lance Hill Design Centre (named after the inventor of the Hills hoist) and the Digital Research and Commercialisation Centre. These aim to put South Australia at the forefront of innovative product design and technology expertise for a wide range of industries, from aged care and health to security and safety. They will be a showcase for smart collaboration in the State, engaging students, independent designers and innovators, researchers and businesses to collaborate on projects, incubate new ideas and products and commercialise new designs.

The second partnership between UniSA and Hewlett Packard will see a new HP Innovation and Collaboration Centre developed, with HP significantly expanding its South Australian workforce by 400. The State Government will also commit $150,000 a year for a student entrepreneur initiative that will support innovative students to pursue commercialisation of new ideas in the ICT sector in partnership with HP and other companies.

UniSA Vice Chancellor, Professor David Lloyd says the new partnerships will help to build a vibrant environment of enterprise and engagement which presents tangible opportunities for South Australians to lead innovation and economic growth.


If you are interested in discussing or learning more about how your organisation can connect with UniSA, contact Lisa McDonald or 8343 8732 at the Polaris Centre.

3D Printing – The benefits, the opportunities and the future

Two upcoming events brought to you through the University of South Australia and the Polaris Centre aim to help northern industry understand and embrace the opportunities around 3D printing.

The first seminar on the 4th of November presented by 3 experts in the area of additive manufacturing, Professor Gordon Wallace, Associate Professor Peter Murphy and Dr Stephen Beirne will discuss how the integration of materials science, high speed data transmission and 3D printing technologies is challenging the traditional approach to manufacturing. Specifically they will highlight:

  •  commercially available 3D printing solutions
  •  the new 3D printing technologies and materials on the horizon
  •  additive bio fabrication and implications for medical advances
  •  future opportunities for printing high-value add components

The second session on the 18th of November is an intimate, engaging and hands on workshop with Asscociate Professor Peter Murphy and Dr David Chan where attendees will have the opportunity to undertake some 3D printing in one of the University’s 3D printing laboratories. This session will really allow attendees to ask questions, increase their knowledge and explore the opportunities around 3D printing and how it can offer potential benefit to their business.

For more information…………

Festival of Innovation- A local showcase of discovery

All things science, technology, engineering and maths will be celebrated at the upcoming UniSA Festival of Innovation on Thursday, 7 November 2013 at Mawson Lakes.

For industry it will be an opportunity to meet graduating students and see what they are capable of by visiting their project exhibition. You can also find out more about the research being undertaken at the University of South Australia and have the opportunity to tour the facilities at Mawson Lakes.

Previous years have been a great success. Businesses have found that they are blown away by the level of expertise and innovation in their backyard. Business owners have also found it particularly useful to understand the capacities of the University of South Australia and how it could aid their own innovation and growth as well as being key in identifying opportunities to secure the skill needs with their businesses.

To join this unique opportunity to get a behind the scenes of the latest technological innovation being carried out by the university’s students, meet with researchers from the science and technology institutes and to tour the state-of-the-art facilities, UniSA is hosting a showcase from 3pm on Thursday, 7 November.

For more information and to register click here


Lynette Kelly Wins ARMS 2013 Award of Excellence

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle

Lynette Kelly (pictured on right, with her team), Manager of the University of South Australia’s Strategic Research Partnerships and a key team member of the Polaris Centre embodies the essence of this quote. To be recognised for excellence in your field, you need to stretch yourself beyond the realms of a nine to five existence and have a 24/7 passion, faith and conviction that your work fulfils a greater purpose.

Lynette’s achievements were recently recognised at the Australasian Research Management Society Awards 2013 where she received the individual award for Excellence in Research Management.

Lynette has driven an extraordinary amount of collaborative projects between researchers, industry and community partners in the Northern Region. She has played an active role in The Northern Business Women’s Network and has helped it evolve into a valuable networking and business support group for women in Business in the North.

Lynette has also played an instrumental role in leading the Research and Innovation Cluster program at the University of South Australia, extending its local, national and global footprint and building its research projects and teams.

We are privileged to have Lynette on our team at the Polaris Centre and we look forward to our clients continuing to benefit from her experience and passion.