The Cooperative Research Centres Program was established by the fourth Hawke Government in 1990, having been designed by Professor Ralph Slatyer, the then Chief Scientist, primarily to encourage collaboration in research and development between the private sector and the public sector research bodies but also to address research concentration for world-class teams and preparing PhD graduates for non-academic careers.
To date there have been 10 selection rounds resulting in 168 CRCs over the life of the Program (102 if renewals and new-from-existing are not counted separately). In 2007-08 there were 58 CRCs. Of these, 25 were in their’!” term, 16 in their rd term and 17 in their rd term. Nine CRCs reached the end of their funding term in June 2008, hence there are 49 CRCs receiving funding in 2008-09. The first selection round resulted in 20 CRCs; the last round in 2006 resulted in 3 new CRCs, 7 new-from-existing CRCs and 4 extensions.The total investment by the Commonwealth is of the order of $3 billion, with almost $9 billion (in kind and in cash — tied and untied) leveraged from participants – including approximately $2.9 billion from universities; $2.3 billion from industry; $1.6 billion from government end-users; and $1.1 billion from CSIRO.