Local Matters: Regions, Innovation and Vocational Education and Training in the Australian Context

Richard Pickersgill

    Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperConference paperpeer-review

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    Abstract

    The paper reports on current research in the Riverina region of NSW which is investigating relationships between skill formation, knowledge transfer and the innovation process, with a particular emphasis on the role of VET institutions in supporting and diffusing innovation.In the recent Australian policy context 'innovation' has been conceived as primarily resulting from capital intensive research and development. This understanding has been largely derived from international literature, in particular OECD materials which identify 'innovation' as part of a necessary public response to the challenges of 'globalisation'. The paper argues that in practice, innovation in organisations is mostly incremental and process oriented. This understanding is particularly relevant for small to medium enterprises, typical of regional Australia. The paper discusses case study findings from a number of innovative regional organisations, most of which are competing in international product markets. These organisations, and the communities in which they are situated, depend heavily on regional education and training infrastructure to develop skills, knowledge and supporting social capital. The research findings are presented in the context of a critical analysis of key terms used in the overseas literature, where the concept of 'region' has different geographic, demographic and labour market implications than Australia.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publication21st SPERA
    Subtitle of host publicationOur stories: Innovation and excellence in Rural Education.
    EditorsColin Boylan
    Place of PublicationToowoomba, QLD
    PublisherSPERA
    Pages89-98
    Number of pages10
    ISBN (Electronic)0095850391
    Publication statusPublished - 2005
    EventSociety for the Provision of Education for Rural Australia (SPERA) National Rural Education Conference - Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia, Australia
    Duration: 05 Oct 200507 Oct 2005

    Conference

    ConferenceSociety for the Provision of Education for Rural Australia (SPERA) National Rural Education Conference
    Country/TerritoryAustralia
    Period05/10/0507/10/05

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