The Swinburne - Medibank Partnership: A healthy dose of collaboration.

How to create and maintain a healthy university-industry partnership.

Daniel Ritlewski
Swinburne University of Technology

Background and objectives of the case
Swinburne’s Overseas Student Health Cover insurance provider contract came up for renewal and in September 2017, Medibank was selected as the preferred partner. It was agreed to extend the partnership beyond the delivery of health insurance. Within less than a year, activities under the partnership exceeded expectations, touching on all aspects of Swinburne’s business and 2025 Strategic Plan.

Swinburne offers undergraduate and postgraduate courses, vocational education and research qualifications. We have campuses in Melbourne, Australia, and in Sarawak, Malaysia. There are currently more than 55,000 students enrolled and approximately 5000 staff employed.

Medibank is a national private health insurer based in Australia. It is Australia's second largest health insurance provider behind Bupa with 3.8 million customers, approx. 30% of the market, under two brands. It operates as a publicly listed company on the Australian Stock Exchange, is headquartered in Melbourne and employs approx. 2,859 staff including 640 health professionals. Overall revenue in FY 2018 was $A6.9 billion and group operating profit was A$548.8m.

The three-year partnership not only supports the health and wellbeing of the Swinburne community, it also creates opportunities for strategic collaboration between the two organisations.

These opportunities include research, co-creation and co-delivery of postgraduate courses, paid placements and internships / work-integrated learning, support for career development, and a continuation of the corporate education program offered by Swinburne for Medibank employees covering leadership, management and customer service.