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It’s good to see that, at last, some of the ideas and intellectual property residing in many of our universities and CRI’s has a bit of a national showcase through KiwiNet.

When you think about it, New Zealand’s combined research pool is only the size of that of a medium sized USA state — so providing a potential first place for the wider world of people looking for skills and expertise makes a lot of sense.

Being curlish, you could ask why it has taken so long.

But let’s give credit to KiwiNet, which has set up an Innovation Database (see here), briefly showcasing 80 projects from its nine core members, plus some others around New Zealand.

Those (original) nine are Waikatolink, AUT Enterprises, IRL, Viclink, University of Canterbury, Plant & Food Research, Lincoln University, Otago Innovation and AgResearch.

Of interest however, considering that Auckland University and its commecialisation arm UniServices wasn’t in the original group hug, are the projects that link to UniServices (a cancer imaging technology and a cell penetrating peptide among others).

Auckland Uni has had a bit of a love/hate relationship with many of the rest of the country’s academic/research organisations over the past years.

Delving among the tea leaves, perhaps there’s an olive branch being extended by KiwiNet — which, given the small size of our research base can only be good.

UniServices CEO Peter Lee commented (see press release here), that ‘showcasing our technologies and capabilities in an easy to access portal like this we can have a greater impact internationally.’

You’d have to hope that this is a living and expanding database — though heaven help the poor person assigned the role of coordinating the whole thing.

It’s frightening to think that (the royal) we, can only come up with 80 potential products!