Based on contributions from a diverse international gathering of industry, research and government stakeholders, the Blue Economy CRC team was able to successfully lodge a very strong and competitive Stage 1: Expression of Interest bid on July 3rd, 2018. This is one of the largest bids in the 25-year history of the Co-operative Research Centre scheme in Australia and has since been formally acknowledged as a ‘compliant’ bid. On behalf of the Blue Economy CRC Steering Committee, we would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our partners for joining us on this journey, believing in the vision and making a commitment to the development of a sustainable blue economy!
The outcome of the Stage 1 EOI application is expected to be formally announced in early September. On the assumption of a positive result, the Blue Economy CRC consortium will then proceed with detailed preparation of a Stage 2 application, due for final submission and presentation in November. The government will then deliberate on the shortlisted candidates, with a view to announcing the winning bids in March 2019. After this time, negotiations on a Funding Agreement will proceed, with a likely commencement date from the start of the new financial year on 1 July, 2019.
The first step in preparation for Stage 2 is for all committed Participants to work with the CRC bid team and Research Leads to map out in greater detail the specific research activities and associated expenditure implications required to deliver on the vision of the CRC. At Stage 1 we were content to describe the CRC on a largely conceptual level, but we now need to drill down further and get quite specific about what it is we hope to achieve, and how. A 2-day intensive workshop is scheduled in early October, 2018 for which select invitations will be distributed.