A ceremony to mark the start of construction has taken place at the new centre for innovation at UNSW's Australian School of Business. It will provide world-class facilities designed to position Sydney as a major centre for innovation in the Asia Pacific region.
The Michael Crouch Innovation Centre has been made possible through a donation from Michael Crouch AO, the Executive Chairman of Zip Industries. "Innovation is what will continue to make Australia great," said Mr Crouch. "The Michael Crouch Innovation Centre will be a world leading environment for students, staff and the community where innovative products and new companies will be developed. The centre will make an important contribution to productivity growth and the Australian economy."
The centre will be housed within a new building on the campus at UNSW Australia, beside the existing Australian School of Business building. It has been designed as a 'building of awe', where passers-by can look in on the ground floor which is devoted to innovation.
Professor Geoff Garrett, the Dean of the Australian School of Business, has engaged in a tour of other innovation centres at institutions including Harvard, Yale and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He said the new centre will take the best of all the other centres, and integrate them, so as to "inspire in students a life of innovation; to seek better ways to do things and solve problems."
The physical space at ground level comprises two main elements, an innovation hall and multipurpose workspaces. The first floor has specialist materials fabrication laboratories. Six multipurpose working spaces can be reconfigured into a single large space for presentations, pop-up retail and events such as robot football or IT competitions. They can be used for prototyping and model building to develop physical projects such as vehicles, robots and satellites using power tools, electronic development, and 3D printers.
Professor Geoff Garrett adds "the Michael Crouch Innovation Centre will draw on UNSW's world class research, and enable students to learn to build grow, and lead globally competitive organisations, creating a hub for innovation."
The Michael Crouch Innovation Centre is located within the new Materials Science Engineering Building at the UNSW's Kensington campus.
Global contractor Brookfield Multiplex commenced initial preparatory works in July 2013 with completion expected for April 2015 in time for the commencement of the 2015 second semester.
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