CRC (The Cooperative Research Centres) Programme was established in 1990 to improve the effectiveness of Australia’s research and development effort. It links researchers with industry to focus R&D efforts on progress towards utilisation and commercialisation. Since the commencement of the CRC Programme, there have been nine CRC selection rounds, resulting in the establishment of 158 CRCs over the life of the Programme (100 new CRCs and 58 new from existing CRCs). In total all stakeholders have committed $11.1 billion (cash and in-kind) to CRCs.
This includes $2.7 billion from the CRC Programme, $2.9 billion from universities, $2.1 billion from industry, $1.3 billion from States, $1.2 billion from CSIRO and $0.8 billion from other sources. There are currently 57 CRCs operating across six sectors. This study, commissioned by the Australian Government Department of Education, Science and Training (DEST), considers, and where possible quantifies, the wide range of economic, environmental and social impacts from the CRC Programme. It builds upon the work undertaken in the 2005 CRC Impact Assessment Study commissioned by the CRC Association.