400 jobs and $100M in 2021: Canberra Innovation Network’s Economic Impact Report released

The level of innovation in the ACT is significant, according to a recent report on the economic impact of the Canberra Innovation Network (CBRIN) prepared by PwC. The advantages of a highly educated population, concentration of education and research institutions and the foundational support of the ACT Government helped create an innovation ecosystem that is one of the densest in Australia. A key part of that ecosystem is CBRIN, which supports and connects a variety of stakeholders to develop innovation and entrepreneurial capacity in the ACT.

We know Canberra is a great environment for innovation. The ACT Government’s investment in CBRIN and the innovation ecosystem is delivering tangible economic results for Canberra. The 400 new jobs that were supported by CBRIN is a testament to the strength and diversity of the ACT economy and the great work CBRIN does as the linchpin of our innovation ecosystem.” – ACT Chief Minister, Andrew Barr MLA.

Key messages:

  • The economic impact of the Canberra Innovation Network (CBRIN) is estimated at $100M in 2021 alone.
  • There are 400 innovation jobs in the ACT economy at the end of 2021 that would not exist without the support CBRIN provides.
  • The investment in CBRIN by the ACT Government returns over 50 times each dollar of base funding to the ACT economy in 2021.

Impact Report Graphic


The majority of ACT businesses responding in the survey that PWC conducted as part of this study report tangible commercial impacts from their engagement with CBRIN. Over 90% of respondents claim both increased capacity and ability, as well as improved commercial outcomes. The top three outcomes reported by businesses include:

  • Increased ability to validate and progress new ideas (71%)
  • Increased ability to think more commercially (66%)
  • Increased ability to establish effective business and key stakeholder connections/relationships (59%)

The individual business impacts are further amplified through connectedness. A connected community is bigger than the sum of all its parts, and 81% of surveyed businesses reported a significant increase in their connectedness with the innovation ecosystem through their engagement with CBRIN.

However, it’s not only about business impacts or connectedness. CBRIN supports entrepreneurs and small and medium sized businesses who also create new jobs. According to the report, 400 innovation jobs would not exist in the ACT in 2021 if it were not for CBRIN’s support. When both direct and indirect impacts of CBRIN support are taken into account this corresponds to over 700 jobs and over $100M added to the Territory’s Gross State Product in 2021.

The quantum of benefits is significant compared to the funding CBRIN receives. In 2021, CBRIN directly supported over $50 in GSP for every dollar (cash) of ACT Government base funding received. This is over $80 of GSP per dollar of ACT Government cash funding when indirect impacts are included. After seven years of operation, it is clear that investment in CBRIN contributes multiple times over to the ACT economy,” states the PwC report.

The report was announced at the Canberra Innovation Network’s annual Innovation Showcase on 1 December 2021. This free online event showcased a variety of entrepreneurs in a rapid-pitch format that capitalises on audience numbers and sentiment and gives back to worthwhile charities.

Innovations from Canberra are literally changing our world for the better. Consider MCI with the best startup pitch at COP26 in Glasgow for their innovative solution to store CO2 in construction materials, Instaclustr who enable industries around the world to leverage open-source technologies better, Quantum Brilliance who are building the world’s first room temperature quantum computer and many many others across a variety of disciplines. The role of CBRIN is to create an environment in which these entrepreneurs have the best chance to succeed, grow and create jobs of the future.” says Petr Adamek, CEO of Canberra Innovation Network.

Find out more and download the 2021 report here.