CSIRO relies on excellent science to deliver impact to industry, society and the environment. Each year we conduct a ‘health check’ to review and evaluate our science excellence. These results are now available in the CSIRO Science Health and Excellence Report 2017-18.

Our research outputs continues to perform very strongly and our excellent science and innovation is delivering real impact both domestically and internationally.

Highlights from the 2017-18 assessment include:

  • CSIRO plays a crucial role in the Australian Innovation System. It is the largest producer of research relevant to the Industry Growth Centres.
  • CSIRO is one of the very best Australian research institutes. CSIRO’s research publications are of a similar high standard in science excellence to those from leading Australian Universities.
  • Amongst Australian research institutes, CSIRO continues to be the largest filer of provisional patents in 2017.
  • CSIRO is ranked the 15th largest PCT patent application filer amongst government and research institutions worldwide in 2017.
  • Key patented technology areas are plant genetics and modification, polymers, sensors and devices, medical fields, batteries, and gas capture and processing.
  • CSIRO is the key connector of Australian institutions in the research areas of agricultural sciences, plant and animal science, the environment and ecology, and geosciences.
  • CSIRO’s publication performance continues to be very strong, both domestically and internationally.
  • CSIRO publishes three times the average share of articles in the top one per cent of most cited and our articles are 50 per cent more cited that the global average.
  • The proportion of CSIRO’s publications involving Australian collaborators increased to 69% last year, while 63% of publications now involve international collaborators.
  • CSIRO produces at least 10 per cent of Australia’s publications in each of these fields: agricultural sciences, the environment and ecology, space sciences, geosciences, plant & animal sciences.
  • Half of all CSIRO IP is either subject to a research right, arose as a result of collaborative activity, was used as background IP in a collaboration or evaluation, or is the subject of a commercial licence.
  • Based on 42 externally-validated case studies, it can be extrapolated that the total annual benefits from CSIRO’s research would exceed $9 billion per year. This suggests that the full CSIRO research portfolio is providing a return on investment of over 6:1.
  • CSIRO worked with 2,060 customers in 2017-18, of which 1,170 were Australian SMEs.

Other topics examined in the report include CSIRO’s research staffing and resourcing, domestic and international collaborators, comparison of CSIRO’s publication and intellectual property performance to other government research agencies and Australian universities and detailed analyses of CSIRO’s patents and publications.

Printable one page summary

More information is included in our one page summary of the report highlights:

The latest CSIRO Science Health and Excellence Report is available in our Publications Repository.

Contact information

Adam Finch
Project Officer

+61 8 8273 8105

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