Invention, connection, trust – key ingredients for curating innovation communities

BioMelbourne Network and The Royal Society of Victoria recently hosted the BioBreakfast Curating Innovation Communities featuring the recipients of the 2018 Women in Leadership Awards. One of our volunteers, Aleisha Symon, wrote the following summary of the event. Aleisha is a Predoctoral Researcher at the Hudson Institute of Medical Research working on understanding genetic diseases.

The concept of ‘curating innovation communities’ created a diverse discussion from three engaging and inspiring women. Kathy Connell, the Senior Director New Ventures for ANZ Johnson & Johnson Innovation began the morning by focussing on the importance that innovation has to the entire biomedical industry. Even healthcare juggernauts like Johnson & Johnson began as a start-up, yet it is a company’s ability to remain innovative and open to advancement of the industry that ensures its survival and growth for generations.

Melbourne is a hive of biomedical research and technology development, with thrilling potential to become the hub of healthcare and technological innovation. To Dr Amanda Caples, Victoria’s Lead Scientist, this concept meant discovering, aligning and connecting partner networks to foster these collaborations. Strengthening this message, Grace Lethlean, Director, Programs, ANDHealth discussed the importance of building and maintaining trust in order to truly create an integrated ecosystem in Australia.

Curating innovation communities requires a balance to be found between competitive tension and harnessing the power of competitors collaborating in order to truly drive change in communities.


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