Best Practice in Research Translation

The importance of considering both Technical Risk and Commercial Risk for industry sponsored projects in STEM

John besida
RMIT University

Background and objectives of the case
The Sir Lawrence Wackett Centre, at RMIT University, is a university-wide centre which focuses on the delivery of technology solutions and training to support the aerospace, defence and related industries. To improve upon the impact and outcomes of industry sponsored research, the centre aims to adopt commercial best practice in research translation which includes robust business case development, project management using phase/gate methodologies, risk analysis and the evaluation of a project’s probability of success. The adoption of a standardised approach towards evaluating the probability of success of R & D projects is important because it enables a comparison of projects at different stages of development, from different research areas and at different times. It can be used to assess the value of a project and ensures that different people, assessing the same project, arrive at similar answers that can be compared across projects.
Ideally, the approach should:
I. Be straightforward and easy to use
II. Be amenable for use by multifunctional teams to achieve consensus
III. Be relevant to most types of innovation
IV. Be applicable at any stage of a project
V. Achieve a result relevant to portfolio analysis