The new Advanced Technology Institute will be named after the late Sir Paul Callaghan, a champion for science and innovation if ever there was one.
Science and innovation minister Steven Joyce made the announcement today, and said the details of the ATI's name will be worked through with the establishment board and confirmed by Cabinet in the coming weeks.
“The late Sir Paul Callaghan championed the idea that science could make New Zealand a better place. He believed that science was not only about great ideas, but about getting value from those ideas through innovation and commercialisation. Those views exactly reflect the ambition of the Institute, so there can be few more appropriate names.”
Joyce also announced that NZQA chair Sue Suckling would lead the seven-member board tasked with having the ATI up and running by the end of the year.
Board members are Industrial Research Ltd (IRL) chair Michael Ludbrook, Plant and Food Research chair Michael Ahie, IRL board member Richard Janes, entrepreneur Neville Jordan, Auckland Transport director Paul Lockey, and Australian company director Michele Allan.
The ATI will connect high-tech firms with innovation and business development expertise around the country, and internationally, focusing on industries with growth potential such as food and beverage manufacturing, agri-technologies, digital technologies, health technologies and therapeutics manufacturing, and high-value wood products
It will also take over some business development functions that currently sit within the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment. That will include the administration of some business research and development grants.