This is the title of the forthcoming International Conference on Future-Oriented Technology Assessment (FTA) being organised by the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission. The conference will be held in Brussels on 27-28 November. The major themes are the application of FTA to driving innovation, new, creative, technology-enabled tools to facilitate FTA and its communication, and advancing methodologies in FTA. Ron Johnston has been appointed a member of the Scientific Committee to design and manage the conference, in recognition of his detailed experience of the application of FTA in Australia, Asia and Europe.
A submission has been made in response to the Australian Competitiveness White Paper, jointly by the Warren Centre for Advanced Engineering and the Australian Centre for Innovation. The submission outlines opportunities to improve productivity, quality and income from Australian agriculture through the implementation of new technologies. It emphasises the need for a national strategy so that Australian farms can take full advantage of the capacities continually emerging in the digital economy, and in particular the opportunities for the growth of a strong agricultural technology business services sector.
Background on new Chairman Mal Bryce can be found under ‘Key People’
After 16 years of service to the Australian Centre for Innovation as its Chairman, Professor John Glastonbury has stepped down as both Chairman and a Director. The Board expressed: “appreciation for John’s long years of service, for his continuing wise counsel in managing ACIIC’s relationship with the Faculty and the University, and for his willingness to engage in an arena marked by continuing uncertainty and change.”
Do the Boards of Australian Companies have the Capacity to Make Decisions about Technology and Innovation?
An education in science, engineering or mathematics can be a special asset for a company director. Despite widespread anecdotal views, there is little evidence that there is a severe shortage of STEM-educated directors for Australian company boards. The more important issues potentially affecting Australian company performance may be at what level major strategic issues with a significant technological content are addressed, and whether more STEM-educated professionals can be encouraged to equip themselves with the necessary experience to become valuable company directors.