A joint European agency has been successful in adapting breakthroughs in science for commercial applications.
Expensive basic/big science projects are under political pressure to achieve commercial results. It’s not that easy, however, due to:
- Commercialising deep tech is challenging for scientists.
- The market applications are often not obvious.
- Typical funding is contingent on quick returns.
- The high professional opportunity cost of diverting serious research towards business endeavours.
- Basic science and business don’t understand each other.
- Technology transfer bottlenecks.
- Often needs new solutions to complex engineering problems.
- Has unforeseen but useful spin-offs, e.g., self-driving cars.
A solution is the Attract Project which:
- Supports researcher’s commercialisation efforts.
- Brings together European research agencies.
- Supports improving the sensing, imaging, detection, and computation technologies for basic science.
- Healthcare (utilising research from particle physics and astronomy).
- Energy, agriculture and the Internet of Things.
- Makes large numbers of relatively small grants.
Note that the Australian 2020 Defence Strategic Update allocates $1.2 billion over ten years to innovation.