Innovators, Creators & ThinkersFriday 22 April 2016, 7.30 - 9.30amCrown Palladium River Room
The AHEPA-NUGAS Careers
Breakfast offers leading Australian university students, graduates and young professionals the opportunity to network with leading Greek Australian and
philhellenic Australian professionals from a variety of industries, including
but not limited to finance, banking, law, hospitality, education, public
service, media, science, technology, medicine and construction.
The AHEPA-NUGAS Careers Breakfast aims to build upon the successful Greek American model of promoting youth engagement in education, business and athletics by linking students with high-flying Americans, opening such pathways and facilitating such connections. This involves extensive academic scholarship, career development, business networking and mentoring programs and is a framework that has been pioneered by our AHEPA brothers and sisters in the USA and Canada.
2016 Theme: “Innovators, Creators and Thinkers”
The theme of this year’s careers breakfast, “Innovators, Creators and Thinkers”, will centre upon the new society and the new economy of the 21st century globalized and hyper-connected world into which we are rapidly transitioning.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s National Innovation & Science Agenda has recast the national conversation about innovation. What has notionally and traditionally been considered a ‘buzz word’, innovation is now at the forefront of social, cultural and economic reform in Australia.
“Extraordinary technological change is transforming how we live, work, communicate and pursue good ideas. We need to embrace new ideas in innovation and science, and harness new sources of growth to deliver the next age of economic prosperity in Australia.”
- The Federal Government’s National Innovation & Science Agenda 2015
Innovation is about exciting enterprises creating new solutions to local and global issues, bringing new products to markets and revolutionising business models.
It is about a culture that rewards risk, backs good ideas and learns from mistakes.
It is about individuals investing in themselves and in their imagination in the face of complacency and tradition.
Innovation in today’s economy is already bearing fruit: from cloud computing to the growing sharing economy (think Uber, Flexicar, Airbnb) and the rise of internet-based subscription services for television programs to coffee beans and shavers.
However, at the core of the innovation challenge lie the issues, among others, of:
- Cultivating a risk-taking culture;
- Attracting young and international talent;
- Taking advantage of the digital world;
- Harnessing and sharing data;
- Growing the number of start-up ventures;
- Increasing our skills in STEM;
- Commercializing Australia’s research findings and ideas;
- Making workplaces more flexible, diverse and productive;
- Accessing international markets for human capital, marketing and financing;
- Embracing the new sharing economy.
In the next ten years, an estimated 75% of jobs in our country’s fastest-growing industries will require skills in STEM – that is, science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Yet enrolments in STEM subjects across secondary and tertiary institutions have been in steady decline in Australia over the past several decades, whilst the rate of women studying STEM subjects remains abysmally low.
The opportunities are bright: from 2006 to 2011, start-ups generated 1.44 million jobs in Australia. Government figures show that 60% of businesses that innovate achieve increased profits.
But it is not just about greater efficiency and larger profits.
Ultimately, innovation is about our society operating in more imaginative and entrepreneurial ways to improve our living standards. Innovation will help us unlock a greater level of prosperity for future generations by deploying the only unlimited resource we have at our fingertips – human capital – in order to make the most of the limited tangible resources we have at our disposal today.
This will require Innovators, Creators and Thinkers.