How universities help business
Universities play a central role in Australia’s innovation system and support the business sector, and individual firms, in many direct and indirect ways. Universities provide Australia with a continuing supply of highly educated graduates, knowledgeable about the most recent developments in their disciplines and able to apply their expertise, understanding and skills within the particular circumstances of their employment. Universities are also major generators of the new knowledge which advances understanding and, through its integration with complementary expertise and existing practices, can create the potential for new and often unexpected commercial opportunities. Because of the breadth of their educational and research activities, universities act as a storehouse of capabilities that other sectors of the economy can draw upon as they need. The students and staff the universities attract to Australia from overseas provide an important component of this storehouse and they come to Australia because of the international reputation of the universities, to which they also contribute. This international recognition, as reflected, for example in independent ranking schemes, in itself provides value, not least through playing a role in helping to attract foreign investment into Australia.