nbn will partner with the University of Melbourne (UoM) and the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) to jointly conduct research and development (R&D) in a number of technological areas.

The areas of focus for the initial three-year relationship will include R&D of technologies such as robotics, Internet of Things, technology for social good, programmable networks, data analytics and visualisation for customer experience, artificial intelligence, wireless technologies and smart cities.

In addition to R&D, the agreements are expected to cover additional opportunities for collaboration such as post-doctoral research opportunities and student exchanges.

According to the nbn, each of these focus areas align under the goal of collaboration to adapt new ideas and translate innovation into a commercial reality.

Chief Technology Officer at nbn, Dr Ray Owen, said, “These two new relationships will help nbn double down on our strong focus on technology innovation for customer experience and operational excellence.”

“With these innovative institutions – UoM and UTS – we saw a natural fit in helping nbn further enable the digital economy.”

The company said combining its technical resources with UTS and UoM in these relationships should enhance its ability to bring new technologies into the market that will help to improve the end-user experience and positively impact people’s lives.

In addition, it believes allowing UTS and UoM access to nbn’s technical resources will also be hugely beneficial to these universities and students in terms of gaining access to real-world telecoms network operational data.

Pro-Vice Chancellor (Research Collaboration and Partnerships) at the University of Melbourne, Professor Mark Hargreaves, said the university was excited to be working with the company to undertake innovative research.

“We are excited to see our researchers and students work closely with NBN Co to create positive social and economic impact.”

Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and IT at UTS, Professor Ian Burnett, said, “This collaborative relationship with nbn significantly grows our engagement in innovative, digital transformation for the whole country.” 

Charlotte Pordage is Editor of Utility magazine, a position she has held since November 2018. She joined the team as an Associate Editor in October 2017, after sharpening her writing and editing skills across a range of print and digital publications. Charlotte graduated from Royal Holloway, University of London, in 2011 with joint honours in English and Latin. When she's not putting together Australia's only dedicated utility magazine, she can usually be found riding her horse or curled up with a good book.

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