When the city leaders of Launceston (a region of approximately 100,000 people in the Australian state of Tasmania) secured $300m funding from Government to drive an education-led transformation of the region - they knew it had to be about more than ‘building new buildings’
While the bulk of the funding was committed to moving the university campus from the edge of the city to the centre there was a strong strategic intent to leverage this further – creating a smart, innovative city where education was visible accessible, and strongly connected to new and emerging opportunities for the region.
Alongside the community 2nd Road is co-designing and ‘innovation eco-system’ – a new way of understanding and orchestrating interactions between players (from commercial, social, technology and educational spaces) and a ‘whole-of-system’ view of new structures required to deepen and accelerate innovation. For instance, new design and creative capabilities that let them come together, think differently about opportunities on a global scale and create entirely new pathways to value.
Thinking differently about education is central to this transformation. Resetting the universities role and orientation in relation to the community and industry; creating new pathways, learning formats, and credentials that draw people into education (many who have been marginalized for generations); and plugging this into the innovation eco-system to fuel economic and social value creation – for industry and entrepreneurs and the community.