A national plan for a world-leading higher education system is fully supported at KPMG. And 2023 will be an important year for this – we’ll be watching the Federal Government’s review of the education sector closely (via the Universities Accord) as it unfolds. 

One part of the Accord looks at reframing how higher education research can be translated into successful and commercial outcomes. This activity is critically important to institutions, including for a range of reputational and funding impacts.

Commercialising research – Australia can do better

Despite being well regarded for our early research, the nations approach to the application and commercialisation of research outcomes needs further work1 to move towards world-class.

The policy environment, community expectations and economy are calling for the nation to urgently reshape how we turn our ideas into a better and more productive society.

Driving higher education research translation is critical to addressing the evolving needs of Australian society. In fact, the long-term success of the higher education sector is reliant on getting this right, to deliver a range of important outcomes and benefits for research institutions, industry and communities involved.

A new translation continuum

Maximising societal benefits of Australian research will involve a range of models and maturity levels.

We have designed a continuum of world-class models to suit a variety of research institutions, aiming to accommodate their natural growth while adapting to the pace of change and avoiding being locked in to one long-term translation system.

Principles and opportunities to enhance research translation

Embed and enhance a world-class research translation culture in your organisation by considering these five steps:

1. Develop a current and future state gap analysis

Review your current model and benchmark it against comparative institutions.

2. Future state design, including overarching strategy

Design a pathway for the ideal future model.

3. Consider the stakeholder and partnership landscape

Bring your people on the journey to make it easier and more inclusive.

4. Develop a change management plan

A clear plan will make sure stakeholders are aligned, invested in the success of the change, and consulted appropriately.

5. Consider the importance of developing successful research partnerships

If research translation in Australia is to grow and thrive, partnering within organisations, and across organisational boundaries must be more effective.

Download report

Watch the webinar

Connect with us

Learn more

Sign up to receive education sector insights – direct to your inbox.


1. Global Innovation Index Report 2021, WIPO, 2021. Australia dropped from 23rd to 25th in the report, ranking 33 for output compared to a more impressive 15 for scientific input.