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23 June 2017 News Release

CSIRO's Data61 was formed at a critical time as both Australia and the world are currently experiencing the Fourth Industrial Revolution, including structural changes to the economy and its industries through the convergence of IT, biology and materials science.

There is a growing need to renew current industries and create new opportunities for jobs and economic growth in areas such as cybersecurity, automated regulation and compliance, health and wellness, food provenance and smart cities.

In order to meet these challenges, CSIRO’s Data61 has brought together a large partner network including federal and state government departments, industry, university partners and CSIRO-wide capability to foster an ecosystem of innovation and collaboration.

"Our talented team has executed all of our third party delivery obligations globally and, at the same time, seeded a culture of excellence in everything we do – from science through to technology and operations," Data61 CEO Adrian Turner said.

"I'm proud to say, by collaborating with our partners and stakeholders, we have already delivered in advancing the course of Australian innovation from within.

"Next year will be even bigger as Data61 continues to lead on many important technology and data-driven opportunities for Australia.

"We will continue to drive our science and technology towards tangible outcomes for Australian business and government, and will leverage our science and technology in the market to help accelerate existing industries and seed new technology-based industries that generate jobs."

CSIRO's Chief Executive, Dr Larry Marshall, said Data61 was originally created within CSIRO to apply world-leading solutions to the data issues of the future, in particular how to navigate Australia through digital disruption and turn job loss into job creation.

"The world is drowning in big data, but our expert analysis is turning that commodity into insight, a unique and powerful value," Dr Marshall said.

"Creating Data61 as part of CSIRO is a core element of Strategy 2020 and has meant we can take deep data-science expertise into Australia's key growth markets – delivering end-to-end, big picture solutions for all 3,000 of our customers – whether they're in government, industry, or the community.

"Happy birthday Data61, we couldn't be prouder to have you as part of our team."

CSIRO's Data61 has achieved significant milestones since its formation last year, including:

  • 900+ employees including 329 PhD students, representing 70 countries
  • 14 locations in Australia including Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra
  • $75m capital raised by portfolio companies
  • $135m new multi-year contracts and $50m contracts in negotiations
  • 273 project milestones completed (a further 76 due by June 30)
  • Four new university agreements with 27 in total now
  • New multi-year partnerships with Victoria, ACT, Queensland and NSW Governments
  • Ribit student placement platform grown to a community with over 10,000 students and 1000 startups and innovative companies and around 450 students matched for jobs
  • 350 scientific papers published
  • Opening of Victorian CyberSecurity and Innovation Centre in Melbourne
  • Expanded the Girls Programming Network to provide coding mentorship for 100s of female school students
  • 51 patents granted and 72 applications filed

Examples of key projects milestones include:

  • Partnership for accelerating cyber capacity: Entered into a $9.3 million partnership agreement with DST Group on cybersecurity. Established collaborative research projects with nine Australian universities around jointly identified priorities.
  • Blockchain technology review delivered to Treasury: In its first year, CSIRO’s Data61 has engaged with industry and government to deliver two reports on the regulatory, technical and societal implications of using blockchain-based systems across various industries.
  • N1 Confidential Computing: N1 enables insights to be learnt from data in a confidential and encrypted manner.
  • Vision processing wins award: Bionic Vision Technology received $23.6 million enabling the company to continue with trials of the first Australian bionic eye implant.

Download Data61's Year in Review Brochure PDF (3 MB)

About the D61+LIVE event

Next Wednesday, 28 June 2017, CSIRO's Data61 will bring its network and capabilities to life at the D61+LIVE showcase in Melbourne.
When: Wednesday, 28 June 2017
Where: Shed 14, Central Pier, 161 Harbour Esplanade, Docklands Victoria
Agenda: Shift Happens: How can Australian organisations adapt to disruption?

About CSIRO’s Data61

CSIRO’S Data61 is addressing the challenge of how to create Australia and the region’s data-driven future with science and technology by partnering with industry, government and universities globally to deliver economic, societal and environment outcomes. As Australia’s largest digital innovation group, Data61’s capabilities range from cybersecurity, confidential computing, IoT, robotics, machine learning and analytics, software and programming to behavioural sciences and more. For further information, visit and @data61news.


Data61’s hexapod robots, modelled off insects, are being designed to safely explore and assess dangerous areas. ©  Karl Schwerdtfeger
Data61 is developing multimodal immersive interfaces for augmented and virtual reality.
CEO of Data61, Adrian Turner. ©  Karl Schwerdtfeger

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