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Farewell CRCSI, rise FrontierSI

By on 4 July, 2018

CRCSI CEO Graeme Kernich speaks at Locate 18 in Adelaide, April 2018.

After 15 years, the Cooperative Research Centre for Spatial Information (CRCSI) is winding up their involvement in the CRC programme with the launch of their new entity: FrontierSI.

The timing of the CRCSI’s announcement is just about perfect. Hot on the heels of a budget packed with historic announcements for the spatial sciences, it’s easy to make a case that the CRCSI’s mandate has been realised.

The rollout of a highly accurate national positioning system based on the same mix of technologies trialed and championed by the CRCSI in their national Satellite-Based Augmentation System (SBAS) testbed and National Positioning Infrastructure (NPI) trial, along with full funding for Digital Earth Australia, another CRCSI project — represent major validation of the centre’s efforts.

The formation of the freshly-minted Australian Space Agency on July 1 is the cherry on top.

Those who have been paying attention won’t be surprised by the announcement, the transition plan was embedded in the Research and Development pillar of the 2026Agenda, and soft-launched at Locate 18.

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The CRCSI’s wind-up was set back in 2010, with the award of their second round of funding — entities under the federal government’s CRC programme may only be funded twice.

FrontierSI have hence begun their transition into a not-for-profit organisation with the objective of performing a similar function to the CRCSI, working with new and existing partners.

The transition period will run from July 2018 to June 2023, and in the initial phases will finalise FrontierSI’s board, test a new governance model in collaboration with partners, and further develop their research agenda — which, decoupled from Commonwealth funding milestones, is now freer to be a more agile and fluid program of work.

Learn more about the new entity and their research agenda and the FrontierSI website.

FrontierSI’s Steph Pradier and Wayne Patterson, Director of Land & Property Information for NSW, previewing the new entity at the CRCSI/FrontierSI booth at Locate 18.

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