Local and Melbourne community

Our community is a broad and diverse one. We bring businesses, startups, research teams and the community together to tackle complex problems, as well as with all levels of government.

We also pride ourselves on innovative ways to bring the community together – LAB-14 events have been a way for communities to get involved in the generation of ideas and pioneering ventures, and we look forward to welcoming the community into the precinct when it is completed. We connect with local community organisations and networks such as the Carlton Local Area Network (CLAN), the Carlton Neighbourhood Learning Centre and the Carlton Residents Association, in alignment with the University’s broader community engagement activities.

Entrepreneurial community

Our entrepreneurial community clusters around the Melbourne Accelerator Program (MAP), Australia’s best university accelerator program and the eighth best in the world. MAP is leading the charge to transform Melbourne into a truly world-class entrepreneurial community.

Other members of this thriving community that is powering the creation of new industry sectors include The Compass, MAP’s impact entrepreneurship program; and the Wade Institute of Entrepreneurship, home of the University of Melbourne’s Master of Entrepreneurship.

It is a community that gives life to an ecosystem of entrepreneurship that spreads across the University of Melbourne and beyond. An ecosystem supported by pillars in teaching, research and innovation and a global bridge to a community of inspiring entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley.

Innovation community

Innovation and the translation of important discoveries are critical drivers of economic growth and powerful contributors to physical, environmental, cultural and social wellbeing.

As collaborations and partnerships evolve, the  innovation precinct will become part of a global network of people and organisations who are finding new solutions to some of our most pressing social and environmental challenges.

Many of the challenges facing Australia and the globe cannot be solved by one sector alone. Carlton Connect will bring the University’s research community closer to industry, driving opportunities for interaction between research, businesses, and all levels of government.

The collaborations and partnerships we drive will enable fresh thinking around global issues like food security and production, precision agriculture, the transition towards renewable energy, affordable housing, the growth of cities and water scarcity.

Science Gallery Melbourne: Inspiring and transforming minds through the collision of arts and science, Science Gallery Melbourne will be part of the acclaimed Global Science Gallery Network and one of eight nodes worldwide including London, Dublin and Bangalore. Science Gallery Melbourne will be centrally located within the innovation precinct and aims to inspire young adults from all backgrounds in arts and science.

IBM Research: The innovation engine of the IBM corporation, the IBM Research lab in Melbourne is part of its network of 12 centres globally.

City of Melbourne: Carlton Connect has collaborated with the City of Melbourne on many innovative events and projects, such as Melbourne Knowledge Week, Melbourne Music Week and Future Melbourne 2026.

Agriculture Victoria Services: Provides the private sector with access to a range of technologies and the vast scientific capability of the Victorian Government’s Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR).

Creative community

The creative community is a vital part of the thriving innovation ecosystem around the University of Melbourne. Our approach is to use the creative communities to bring complex ideas to life through a prism of innovation and discovery, firing the imagination of our leaders and communities.

Carlton Connect invites participation from the creative community through our program of innovative exhibitions and events featuring collaborations between artists, academics and industry experts. For instance, in 2016, Absolutely Famished brought together over 50 artists, scientists, and food experts to imagine the future of food and the 22nd century marketplace, through a six-month program of exhibitions, performances and food experiences.

We are also proud participants of the City of Melbourne’s Creative Spaces program. The Creative Spaces  studio (previously at LAB-14) offers creative residencies with the specific intention of positioning artists amongst researchers, academics and entrepreneurs to tackle issues of sustainability and resilience.