The Hunter Innovation Festival has announced a new-look lineup of events for its 2023 program, with the previous one-day format now extending beyond Newcastle and covering a three-week program.
The festival will include an Innovation Roadshow, covering Muswellbrook, Singleton, Port Stephens, Maitland, and Lake Macquarie from October 9 to 13, a one-day Conference and Exhibition in Newcastle on 19 October, and an Action Summit to develop an actionable project plan with measurable outcomes on 27 October.
Hunter Innovation Festival Chair, Alex Brennan said it was important the festival showcases the talents of the entire region, not just in Newcastle.
“We have people right throughout the Hunter and across all industries – from manufacturing and mining to aerospace and agriculture, making brilliant regenerative changes,” Alex said.
“A lot of the time they don’t even realise how innovative they are until an opportunity like the Hunter Innovation Festival comes along and they have a moment to reflect and listen to their peers.
“The festival aims to inspire businesses, innovators, and investors, sparking conversations and facilitating collaborations that lead to innovative outcomes for the region.
“Ultimately, we want the Hunter to be recognised as a knowledge-sharing economy inspiring new age ideas and inspiring productivity.”
The festival announcement was aptly held in front of a Port of Newcastle electric vehicle and one of two hybrid mobile harbour cranes, the first of their type in Australia.
Port of Newcastle’s Chief Commercial Officer, Simon Byrnes said that Port of Newcastle is proud to be the platinum sponsor of this year’s Hunter Innovation Festival.
“It’s the people, and the innovative and vibrant culture we have in the Hunter region that will drive the success of exciting projects like our clean energy precinct, deepwater container terminal and offshore wind,” Simon said.
“We are really excited to be part of an event that brings those people together so that we collaborate to create a thriving Hunter community.”
The one-day conference and exhibition at Newcastle City Hall on 19 October will feature a line-up of presenters and exhibitors, from government and industry, with topics ranging from attracting and retaining talent, transitioning to renewable energy, and using technology and innovation to solve global and local issues.
Alex said the team are looking forward to the event.
“We’re looking forward to announcing some incredible keynote speakers for the conference in the coming weeks, and also sharing the carefully curated line up of exhibitors from across our region who are really making waves in the startup, scaleup, investor, innovator, incubator and accelerator spaces,” Alex said.
The Hunter Innovation Festival was born from the rib of the Australian Innovation Festival that started in 2002. This festival was built on the foundations of the four Cs – creativity, connections, collaboration, and commercialisation.
For HIF that started in 2007, the same foundations remain fundamental to embracing an innovative culture and it showcases these concepts through the annual event.
It aims is to contribute to fostering even greater connections and opportunities for startups, scaleups, businesses and organisations that realise that innovation is a priority in workplace practices.