A successful prototype
In 2015 the University of Melbourne launched LAB-14, an on-site prototype to test the concept of a new innovation precinct in Carlton. LAB-14 operated for two and a half years as an innovation precinct on a small scale with co-located industry and research groups.
LAB-14 has also brought people together to network, bump and mingle in a central location with a distinctive program of events, seminars, exhibitions, workshops, roundtables and hackathons which attracted more than 40,000 visitors.
In a few years LAB-14 activities will be scaled up across the entire former Royal Women’s Hospital site, globally recognised as a leading innovation precinct.
The dynamic mix of anchor organisations that resided in the prototype precinct included:
Melbourne Bioinformatics: Formerly known as the Victorian Life Sciences Computation Initiative, the bioinformaticians and high end computing specialists at Melbourne Bioinformatics work with some of Australia’s leading researchers to enable cutting edge research into some of society’s biggest challenges, through access to state-of-the-art resources, centralised computational expertise, know-how and training services.
Creative Spaces: A City of Melbourne initiative providing studios to artists to create new work next door to scientists and students.
The EU Centre on Shared Complex Challenges: Enhances European Union and Australian collaboration in tackling shared complex challenges, such as climate change and natural disasters. EU Centre research and outreach activities focus on climate and energy, regional governance and innovation.
Melbourne Accelerator Program (MAP): The leading entrepreneurship program in Australia. MAP provides the networks and expertise to accelerate the growth of world-class businesses and brings leaders, University of Melbourne alumni and investors to our doorstep. MAP start ups have collectively raised over $7.8 million in funding, created more than 80 jobs and generated over $3.4m in revenue.
At LAB-14, MAP participants had access to high quality open office spaces in a central location with unparalleled networking opportunities. MAP will continue to expand as we develop new wings of our site in Carlton.
Australian-German Climate and Energy College: Offers Australian and international PhD candidates the opportunity to conduct research into core areas of the response to climate change. They will work in an exceptional environment, in a collaborative setting, with a six-month exchange to international partner institutions and with the field’s best scholars as supervisors.
CO2CRC: Undertakes research in a range of technologies that enable the capture of carbon dioxide from fuel combustion and industrial processes. CO2CRC investigates advanced monitoring techniques of CO2, once trapped in underground rock formations. Its research aims to reduce global emissions from fossil fuels, to reduce the cost of implementing carbon capture and storage technologies, while maintaining the strictest safety standards.
IBM Bluemix Garage: Assists enterprise and startups with transformative practices and technology to accelerate the pace of innovaiton. The IBM Bluemix Garage in Melbourne is part of a worldwide network, including San Francisco, New York, Toronto, Nice and London.