The nation that goes all-in on innovation today will own the global economy tomorrow.

 

Barack Obama, President of the United States of America
State of the Union Address, January 2014

AMSI Intern delivers Australia’s young and brilliant minds to industry from a range of disciplines, enhancing the postgraduate experience of students by giving them the opportunity to apply their research skills within an industry context.

The program also provides a platform for industry to engage and attract talent into their organisation through short-term tightly focused research projects. Having placed over 120 postgraduate students into industry — across all study disciplines and business sectors — AMSI Intern is Australia’s leading PhD internship program, delivering research solutions for challenges facing business.

In 2015 AMSI Intern finalised negotiations on a strategic partnership between eight AMSI member universities to expand the program in Victoria and New South Wales, developing a wider range of industry connections for the benefit of their PhD students.

“Work-readiness of our PhD students, and the links between industry engagement and national productivity, are critically important matters for this country. The AMSI Intern program is one such shining example,” says Professor Ian Chubb, Chief Scientist for Australia. [1]

A report prepared by PwC in partnership with the Australian Technology Network of Universities found that Australia ranks 29 out of 30 in the OECD in terms of the proportion of businesses collaborating with universities. This is in stark contrast to Australia being ninth in research output per capita amongst OECD nations. [2]

“Australia must increase the penetration of Australian graduates with advanced research expertise into the private sector. They will boost innovation and business-university collaboration but we must give them those skills. And give business the confidence to employ them,” says Professor Geoff Prince, AMSI Director.

AMSI Intern works at the nexus between academia and industry, creating and strengthening links between businesses and universities, increasing awareness of the value-add that can be achieved through the engagement of high-level research capability.

What is AMSI?

The Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute (AMSI) is the collaborative enterprise of Australia’s mathematical sciences. It exists to give independence to the discipline and provide infrastructure so that initiatives can be taken to the national and international stage. These measures fall largely into three classes – research and higher education, school education and engagement with the industrial and commercial world.

AMSI has built a record of achievement in these areas and is recognised by government and industry as a leading provider of services, activities and strategic initiatives.

The common aim AMSI shares with its partners is the radical improvement of mathematical capacity and facility in the Australian community.

You can read AMSI’s mission statement here.

A short history of AMSI Intern

AMSI’s internship program was established in 2007 as part of a $2M Collaborative and Structural Reform (CASR) grant through the State Government of Victoria. At this time, interns were placed only within the mathematical sciences discipline.

In 2010, the internship program expanded through a three-year, $1.7M partnership with Enterprise Connect, which was an initiative of the Commonwealth Government’s Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research. This partnership allowed placement of PhD interns over three years, opening up the program to cover all disciplines.

AMSI Intern finalised negotiations in 2015 on a strategic partnership between eight AMSI member universities to expand the program in Victoria and New South Wales, developing a wider range of industry connections for the benefit of their PhD students.

Why place students outside mathematics and statistics?

Whilst the program’s roots are in the mathematical sciences, AMSI Intern today continues from its 2010 partnership with Enterprise Connect to cover all disciplines, which builds the program’s scale to better service both our industry and university partners, as well as provide more opportunities for students at our member institutions to develop their work-readiness.

References

  1. Chief Scientist of Australia Professor Ian Chubb speech, 6 February 2013, ‘Productivity, Industry Engagement and the PhD Workforce’.
  2. Australian Technology Network of Universities (ATN) PwC Report ‘Innovate and Prosper – Ensuring Australia’s Future Competitiveness through University-Industry Collaboration,’ March 2015.