Bilateral cooperation [fr]
Science and Technology Cooperation Between France and Australia
France is currently the 5th partner of Australia for scientific co-publications of and the 3rd European partner, after the United Kingdom and Germany (source: web of science).
Bilateral scientific cooperation between our two countries is strong and is structured through long-lasting and productive researcher-to-researcher collaborations. In some sectors, it is essential to strategic and logistic cooperation issues (base in the Antarctic, oceanography in the Austral Ocean, defense issues).
A number of French research organisations are currently active within the bilateral scientific cooperation, amongst them the CNRS, the CNES, the INRA, the INSERM, the Pasteur Institute, the IPEV, the IRSTEA, the IFSTTAR and the INRIA. French universities, particularly the new IDEX (Paris Saclay, PSL, Sorbonne University…) begin the construction of strategic partnerships with their Australian partners motivated by research partnerships with great potential.
The bilateral scientific and technologic cooperation has entered into a dynamic of increased structuration, in the general context of reinforcement of the bilateral relation, where technological innovation has been identified as essential for the strategic sovereignty interests and the economic growth of the two countries.
Since 2016, the intergovernmental dialogue in science and technology is increasing. The Joint Science and Technology Meeting in Paris in October 2016, and the Joint Science and Innovation Meeting in February 2019, at the occasion of the visit of French Minister for Higher education, Science and Innovation, allowed converging towards the following strategic priorities:
Joint research priorities:
To intensify the scientific cooperation and to foster structural research partnerships between France and Australia, in shared priority fields such as state-of-the-art engineering, digital technology, ecological and energy transition, spatial, health, marine sciences, sustainable agriculture and biodiversity conservation
In terms of university/industry sectors:
To foster the construction of scientific and technological partnerships associating research institutions and industries from the two countries, and supporting initiatives like Industrie du Futur/Industry 4.0
To develop the bilateral cooperation in the field of incubation and maturation of start-ups stemming from public research
To foster the cooperation between French competitiveness clusters and their Australian equivalents, the Industry Growth Centers
To reinforce the bilateral cooperation in the field of student and young researcher entrepreneurship, in particular through taking advantage of all the opportunities offered by the CIFRE scheme.
New forms of partnerships
are emerging in this context, for example:
- The prefiguration of the first International Research Laboratory associating the CNRS and the three universities of South Australia (Univ South Australia, Univ Adelaide and Flinders Univ) with a major industry (Naval Group, contracted to renew Australian submarines) in the areas of autonomous systems, human-machine interaction, and artificial intelligence
- The design of an OzCEAN Technocampus involving Naval Group with 14 Australian institutions, such as the Department of Defense, the Office of the Chief Scientist, the governments of Victoria and New South Wales, as well as many Australian universities, for the establishment of a techno-campus dedicated to bringing together R&D capabilities to foster innovation in the field of engineering and maritime technologies
Partnerships strengthening the education/research/innovation continuum
- Student mobility programs such as those initiated by the Embassy (the initiative "internships in France" of the Nicolas Baudin program, or "Mathew Flinders program" for internships in South Australia) allowing Australian or French students to carry out a research internship at a higher education institution in collaboration with a leading industrial partner (Airbus, Thales, Naval Group...)
- The development of training cooperation is identified as an important lever for consolidating scientific partnerships
New forms of local partnerships are also emerging between France and Australia, with for example the rapprochement of Brittany and South Australia in fields such as advanced manufacturing and computer science
A partnership strategy led by the research and technology intensive universities and higher education organisations (French IDEX and Grandes Ecoles, Australian Go8 and ATN), with for example the establishment of an antenna of the University Paris Sciences et Lettres at the Australian National University
Work on a joint action plan for the future of science and innovation cooperation is engaged with the Australian Department of Industry, Innovation and Science