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Driving innovation in the Australian automotive sector

Gary White, Managing Director of GJW Enterprises, attended Science meets Parliament in 2008 and met with a senior advisor to then Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Senator Kim Carr that changed the innovation of automotive in Australia. 

“The presentations and training at the beginning of the first day were extremely helpful, I really got an idea of how to pitch my work” said Gary.

“Even though we’d all heard about elevator pitches before, I’d never really crafted one until that day.”

Gary was given the chance to meet the Senator’s Industry Advisor, and came prepared with his pitch and a one-page summary of his work.

“After our initial pitches, the Advisor mentioned that he lacked connections with experts in some industry sectors, and I offered to link him with some of the researchers I worked with on automotive research,” he said.

“I suggested a follow-up meeting to discuss the government’s work, and I think they were interested because I wanted to provide solutions, not speak about problems.”

By providing a list of contacts and his organisation’s vision for automotive research in Australia, Gary was able to have an impact on the resulting plan for automotive research and development in Australia.

“Following the launch of the government’s plan, we were able to pitch the Automotive Australia 2020 Cooperative Research Centre,” he said.

“This was successfully funded less than five years after that first meeting at Science meets Parliament.”

“Without that opportunity to get in front of a Parliamentarian to share my excitement and passion for my work, that may not have happened.”

First published by Science & Technology Australia


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