The 2023 Resources, Energy, and Industry Innovation Forum


Co-hosted by Regional Development Australia Orana and the Association of Mining and Energy Related Councils NSW, the four-day forum brought together esteemed energy industry experts, business representatives, and thought leaders to deliberate on the transition towards a net-zero future.

During the event, University of Newcastle Pro Vice-Chancellor (Industry and Engagement) Mr. Warwick Dawson hosted a session titled "Leading and Funding Innovation." This session shed light on the potential opportunities unlocked through partnerships, with a particular focus on recent initiatives such as the NSW government's Net Zero Plan and the NSW Decarbonisation Innovation Hub.

Mr. Dawson also took part in the "Community Building" session, which delved into identifying and anticipating the skills required for the green and low-carbon economy. The session emphasized the cultural impacts of renewable energy projects, addressing the concept of social license within an indigenous context and its significance in fostering a connection to Country.

In the "Leveraging Opportunities" session, NIER Executive Director Professor Alan Broadfoot facilitated discussions on how communities and businesses can capitalize on research projects underway in their respective regions.

Furthermore, Professor Broadfoot participated in an interactive workshop titled "Activating Innovation in the Regions." This workshop centered around the development of a Zero Business Incubator and Innovation Zone, known as the Zero Hub. The Zero Hub aims to offer business advice, research guidance, and foster collaboration on energy and resources-focused partnerships within the region, with the goal of achieving net-zero targets.

Notably, industry leaders shared valuable insights into the educational and critical skills initiatives proposed under the Trailblazer for Recycling and Clean Energy (TRaCE) program, conducted in partnership with UNSW Sydney. Professor Leanne Piggott, UNSW's Director of Experience and Work-Integrated Learning, participated in the "Managing Transition" session, highlighting TRaCE's role in assessing regional workforce requirements, upskilling initiatives, and creating a pipeline for the future workforce in the clean energy sector.


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