The Academy’s Strategy Plan 2017-2020 identifies key priorities for our work in order to help equip Australia to meet the challenges, and seize the opportunities, from global technology advances to 2030.
Australia in 2030
Technology change, globalisation and demographics will create a set of major opportunities and challenges for Australian business and society. Australia will require an inspirational policy vision to remain a leading society and economy by the end of the next decade.
Australia’s economic growth is expected to slow and to decline in proportional importance due to the predicted shift of power from the USA to China and India.
However, resource-based industries (mining and agriculture) will remain a strong component of the Australian economy due to the demand created by more people, especially in Asia, moving out of poverty.
Nevertheless, competitive pressures will see a need for a greater innovation and value-add in both “new” industries (such as service and knowledge-based industries) and in “old” industries (such as resources and agriculture).
Both types will be reliant on greater entrepreneurship, innovation and technology skills to prepare for the disruptive forces of change.
The major shifts in Australia’s demography over the next decades will see a growing and ageing population. This will lead to opportunities and challenges in health including the growing level of chronic disease and burgeoning healthcare expenditure.
Owing to an expanding population, Australia’s cities will grow substantially, putting further pressure on existing infrastructure and energy needs. Globally, food supply and demand will increase dramatically, further straining agricultural and natural resources.
Australia also must play its role in addressing important global issues.
CLIMATE CHANGE: Australia has ratified the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, agreeing to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by 26 to 28 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030.
Australia’s climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts will be strongly enhanced by the timely adoption and further advancement of science and technology innovations.
Moreover, Australia must recognise that climate change mitigation will impact its production and export of fossil fuels. We shall need to address the mitigation of the greenhouse impact of our exports.
AUTOMATION: The workforce in all developed economies will be impacted by unprecedented levels of advanced automation. Australia is no exception and we must be prepared to adapt to this new reality.
SOCIAL COHESION: With a greater wealth of knowledge and the rise of digital technologies, consumers will grow more empowered and have a major influence on markets and industries.
Digital technology will disrupt all facets of the Australian way of life. As a result, the stark divisions already appearing in our society will grow more serious and need mitigation.
Thus, rapid and disruptive technological change will be a constant to 2030 (and beyond) and will transform how we secure our nation and the very nature of business, work and how we go about our daily lives.
More than ever, Australia will need to have a technologically advanced economy and be ready for the transitions so as to maintain a sustainable social fabric.
The Academy’s Strategy Plan identifies eight key strategies.
- Ensure Industry Technology Readiness
- Enhance Technology and Engineering Career Paths
- Improve STEM Education
- Achieve Greater Gender Equity and Diversity
- Connect Globally for the Benefit of Australia
- Celebrate Technology, Engineering and Innovation Excellence
- Amplify Impact
- Strengthen Engagement
To read the plan in full, download a PDF below.