Grant Funding

The following grants have been awarded by the Australian Research Council (ARC):

Causal Effects of Innovation, Exports and Collaboration on Firm Performance

Policymakers do not have adequate empirical evidence to demonstrate whether their support of firms' innovation activities actually improves firms performance in terms of productivity or employment growth. This project examines a range of government policy interventions, thereby improving the evidence base for Australia's innovation policies.

Chief Investigators: Dr Alfons Palangkaraya, Professor Elizabeth Webster, Professor Paul Jensen; Professor Jacques Mairesse

The Market for Technology in Australia

Over the last 5 years, formalised markets for technology have accelerated in the US. However, there is no recognised formal market in Australia. Results from our primary data collection and analysis will highlight whether deficiencies in the market for technology are creating obstacles for the commercialisation of Australian technology.

Chief Investigators: Professor Elizabeth Webster; Professor Paul Jensen; SD Applegate; R Gilmore; KJ Sinclair

The Efficiency of the Global Patent System

This project will be the first study in the world to combine a new international patent database with more in‑depth local information from Australia, Japan, US, Europe and Chinese Asia (China, Taiwan).  The patent system should be globally consistent; simple and cost effective to use; parsimonious in the grant of monopoly rights; and provide a level playing field for all inventors. Existing empirical evidence indicates that the patent system is currently inefficient and this has negative effects on our Research and Development sector. This is a particularly important issue for Australia given distance and lack of attachment to a major trading bloc such as the EU or NAFTA our relative isolation arising from geographical.

Chief Investigators: Professor Elizabeth M Webster; Professor Paul H Jensen; Dr Alfons Palangkaraya; Professor Brian D Wright; Professor Dr Sadao Nagaoka; Associate Professor Bruno J van Pottelsberghe; Professor Show-Ling Jang

Testing Trade Mark Law's Image of the Consumer

An effective trade mark law is vital both to protect consumers and to allow businesses to build brand recognition. This project seeks to put Australian trade mark law on a firmer empirical footing by bringing together experts from psychology, law and marketing to test the law's assumptions against actual consumer responses.

Chief Investigators: Professor Michael Humphreys; Associate Professor Kimberlee Weatherall; Dr Sarah Kelly; Associate Professor Jennifer Burt; Professor Megan Richardson

Partners: Federal Court of Australia; Fosters Group Ltd; IP Australia

Unlocking the Food Value Chain

Kraft Foods and the University of Melbourne will lead an integrated research program to enhance Asian export opportunities for manufactured confectionery. The Hub will develop new product insights and innovative production technologies that will enable Australia’s largest manufacturing sector to exploit new markets such as India and China.

Chief Investigators: Professor Frank Dunshe; Professor Greg Qiao; Professor Yoshihisa Kashima; Dr Sigfredo Fuentes; Professor Muthupandian Ashokkumar; Professor Elizabeth Webster; Associate Professor Raymond Dagastine; Professor Danny Samson; Associate Professor Angela Paladino; Ms Melindee Hastie; Dr Anna Barlow; Mr Nicolas Georges; Ms Liza Vernalls; Ms Linda Gravina; Mr Simon Talbot

Partner: Mondelez

Cultural Collections, Creators and Copyright:  Museums, Galleries, Libraries and Archives and Australia’s Digital Heritage

This project investigates current and emerging ways of using digital collections in museums, galleries, libraries and archives, in light of copyright law and the interests of creators. The project will assist Australia better manage its digital cultural collections and balance the interests of creators, institutions and public accessibility. Ten partner organisations are collaborating in the project.

Chief Investigators: Associate Professor Andrew Kenyon and Professor Andrew Christie

Uncertainty and the Success of Innovation

The empirically-oriented project, with strong conceptual foundations, will add significantly to our understanding of the barriers to successful commercial exploitation of innovation in Australia.  There is currently no other applied work in this area in Australia of this scope and empirical content.  The researchers' approach adopts a rigorous approach to the meassurement of innovation and performance, and looks at the effect of uncertainty on the relationship between the two. The results of this exercise wil translate into both government and corporate policy.

Chief Investigators: Professor Elizabeth Webster, Dr Jongsay Yong, Professor Paul Jensen, Dr Alfons Palangkaraya and Ms Kay Collins

Developing a Coalitional Approach to Business Strategy and Industrial Organisations:  Theory and Empirical Operationalisation

Recent advances in game theory have had an impact on understanding the stretegic implications of some business actions.  However, of considerable more use to business would be a set of tools that can identify strategic opportunities taking into account all of the reactions from rivals and others in the market place.  This project will use coalitional game theory to develop those tools and then take the tools and operationalise them utilising Australian data.  The end result will be new studies of the strategic environment facing Australian businesses and recommendations that will hopefully improve the productivity of Australian industry.

Chief Investigators: Professor Joshua Gans and Associate Professor Michael Ryall

..and by opposing, end them: A Comparative Examination of Opposition Processes in Patent Law

Patent law is central to the key Australian economic aim of encouraging an innovative culture. One aspect of patent law, the opposition process, is directly linked to two important issues currently facing our patent system: improving patent quality, and minimising predatory behaviour by powerful firms. This project will assess the operation of the opposition process here, and the practice of equivalent international procedures in other jurisdictions, in order to inform Australian policy in current and ongoing negotiations towards global harmonisation. Material from this project will lead directly to proposals for improving the Australian patent system, and ensuring that it promotes, and does not retard, innovation.

Chief Investigators: Professor Andrew Christie and Associate Professor Kimberlee Weatherall

The Fingers of the Powers Above Do Tune the Harmony of this Peace: Australia and the Harmonisation of Patents

Patent law is central to the key economic aim of encouraging an innovative culture. The harmonisation of patent systems around the world means Australian law will change. There is a significant risk that, without effective lobbying, the reforms will only reflect the needs and interests of the dominant economies, like the US. This project, with its comparative analysis of the patent examination process, will explore the ways in which this integral part of the patent system may be improved. This research will lead to proposals for reform that are in line with the interests of Australia's unique economy.

Chief Investigators: Professor Andrew Christie and Associate Professor Chris Dent