With the Brisbane Olympics on the horizon and the Queensland Government asking questions about accelerating investment and growth opportunities for Queensland, it should be very clear that the Brisbane Olympics will provide a once-in-a-generation opportunity to transform our economy and profile our skills.

If we don’t make it an innovation opportunity, we will reduce the ROI of the Games.

The Queensland Government and industry can work together and identify some priority areas for innovation and create innovation clusters – specifying core goals to be achieved. Can you see a digital construction process, a net-zero games and/or a Smart connected travel for SEQ?

To be in that type of position, it is paramount that we take advantage of the period leading up to the Games and upgrade our innovation practices and develop our skills.

The Queensland technology innovation and entrepreneurship system should be more effective at enabling successful innovation in priority areas for the economy. Creating viable innovation-intensive sectors overall but also with a focus on the Games would generate urgency and likely valuable innovation across the economy in a timely fashion.

Queensland Government should perform a key and direct role in introducing start-ups to industry incumbents who have real problems. Government and industry can work to identify key future industry supply chains, and these should be specific capabilities. Development of clusters and a need to be focused on industry and located in a geography with demand and skills would be important considerations.

Key industry focus areas should include construction supply chain integration, mining and environment sustainability, Defence manufacturing and remote and regional health and community services.

The Queensland economy also needs an advanced technology workforce.

Our current knowledge and skill development models for information technology and digital engineering talent need to be more effective. While Queensland continues to be an importer of skilled technology labour our universities have been reducing their ICT courses, due to lack of demand. Queensland Government needs to promote
tech-in-industry jobs to high school students, to generate demand for CSEE courses.

Queensland Government and industry should focus on core future skills around software engineering, AI/ML, data analytics and develop graduate employment programmes in priority industry clusters and incent employers. The development of a migration program incentive to attract experienced tech R&D engineers to move to Queensland and a cross-skilling process and internship for workers in declining industries and skills to enter the CSEE sector are also key considerations for our future technology skills.

Picture Queensland leveraging the Brisbane Olympics Games construction programme to develop world-class digital supply chain practices and germinating local capacity, capability and skills!