CRC methodology notes

Cooperative Research Centres (CRC)

For 2001 and 2002, Cooperative Research Centres (CRCs) were included as respondents to the NSRC. For the 2003 survey and onwards, it was decided that CRC commercialisation information would be obtained through CRC annual reporting and the CRC Management Data Questionnaire (MDQ). The questionnaire is a monitoring and evaluation instrument used by the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science specifically for the CRC programme.

The MDQ is not fully consistent with all of the metrics used in the NSRC, but there is sufficient commonality for reporting data in relation to a number of metrics. To reduce the risk of double counting or under-reporting against a number of the metrics, CRC data were not integrated with NSRC data.

In order to present consistent time series trends in commercialisation activity, the CRC MDQ data has been presented from financial years 2005–06 to 2013–14. CRC time series data was prepared by expressing figures as a proportion of research expenditure to account for the changing number of CRCs between years. Although many metrics are reported back to 1992, research expenditures are only reported back to 2005–06. For this reason the time series was prepared for 2005–06 to 2014–15. As for the NSRC time series data, all dollar values presented are expressed in constant 2015 prices using the implicit price deflators applied to the Gross Domestic Product in the Australian System of National Accounts1.

It should be noted that research expenditures reported by the CRCs may be an under-estimate of actual expenditure since the education component includes the cost of postgraduate students who undertake significant amounts of research.

The MDQ information is raw data as provided by CRCs and has not been verified or independently assessed by the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science. As the MDQ data is annually reported, previous years data can be revised. As such the MDQ data presented in this report may not match the data presented in previous NSRC reports.

Over the period of the latest survey, CRCs operated in four broad sectors: Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing; Manufacturing; Mining; and Services. From 2012–13 onwards, the wording of some MDQ questions were changed to better meet CRC program reporting objectives. As a result, for some MDQ questions data is no longer collected, or there has been a change in the data set.

1 Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australian System of National Accounts 2014–15, cat. no  5204.0

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