Innovation hub may be scoped
An innovation hub for Central Otago will be considered at a council meeting today.
The business community is seeking support from the district council to support scoping work for an innovation hub concept at a cost of about $8000.
The hub proposal has been developed with input from Greg Bodeker, of Bodeker Scientific, Richard Tyree, of Farm Solutions and Tara Druce, of Druce Consulting, and there have been exploratory discussions with the Otago Polytechnic about how its redeveloped Cromwell Campus might support an innovation hub in the district, a report to council says.
‘‘The current speed of technological change is influencing the global economy and skill demand at a rapid rate.
‘‘Innovation is critical in a world of converging technologies such as fast internet, mobility, big data and cloud computing.
‘‘The current wave of new technologies will impact every part of society and the economy.
‘‘Enabling Central Otago to drive innovation would help ensure a thriving future for our district economy.
‘‘Successful innovation improves competitiveness, increases output, drives productivity growth, and creates successful exports by introducing new or improved products, processes or methods into the economy,’’ the report says.
Central Otago has a rich history in science and innovation and a number of Crown Research Institutes have facilities located in the district, it says.
‘‘Alexandra is also home to the new Centre for Space Science Technology, the second institution to receive funding under the Government’s Regional Research Institute programme.
‘‘It is timely for Central Otago to consider how to build on this heritage, the technological change that is occurring globally and recent local developments, in order to grow an innovative district enonomy.’’
The broad vision for a hub in Central Otago would include a physical space where entrepreneurs can be co-located with other innovative industries to drive links and synergies between projects and people.
It is envisaged if the hub project proceeds, it should be selfsustaining with no funding required from council.
Winner of the adult section of Light Up Your Hat was Claire Dwyer, of Cromwell.