RMIT Activator is the University’s growth engine for entrepreneurship and innovation. RMIT Activator has developed its programs and partnerships to align with RMIT’s strategic ambitions for sustainability and the SDGs. The RMIT Entrepreneurship Week 2020, was a collaboration between RMIT Activator, RMIT Social Innovation Hub and the RMIT Sustainability Team. This partnership brought together expert insights and entrepreneurial mindsets to co-create new ideas and a more accessible and equitable future for all. Over 250 people participated across the week’s activities comprising an expert panel that gave insights into the sustainability challenge and a student hackathon culminating in a pitch event. The panel set the questions, ‘How might we design waste out of consumption and production?’ for the students in the ideation challenge and innovation hackathon.
RMIT Activator strives to expose students to ‘wicked problems worth solving’, through experiential programming, supports capability development and the connections needed to make a practical difference. Another key project in 2020 was the “Supporting circular innovation through start-ups” initiative, delivered as a six-week pre-accelerator program in partnership with Circular Economy Victoria. The program supported eight start-ups progress towards finding the right customers and industry partners to successfully apply innovative solutions and new business models relevant to a circular economy. The program drew on experts from the CEH to support the program. CEH also participated in Tech 23, a national CE platform focusing specifically on building and construction.
Activator and CEH have continued this work into 2021, forming the Victorian Circular Activator (VCA): the brand new, beating heart of circular economic activity for our State. It is a collaboration between Circular Economy Victoria, RMIT University, RMIT Activator, Swinburne Data for Social Good Cloud Innovation Centre, Planet Ark and the City of Melbourne. The VCA is a physical space that supports the existing digital infrastructure underpinning circular innovation in Victoria. As part of Melbourne Knowledge Week, RMIT Activator and the VCA hosted a live exhibition, where attendees had the opportunity to explore some of the latest innovations driving our city’s transition towards a circular economy.