blog Over the past couple of weeks the Opposition has been generating a great deal of positive feelings in Australia’s early stage technology sector with its ‘Labor for Innovation’ push. Labor MPs such as Ed Husic and Jason Clare have been out in the technology community talking and listening — and they’ve had even got top-level Shadow Cabinet members like Bill Shorten, Tanya Plibersek and Chris Bowen. Personally I think it’s fantastic that this is going on, as I’ve said previously.
But not everyone in Australia’s startup sector believes Labor has yet demonstrated it can walk the talk when it comes to the digital economy: Can these feel-good events actually translate into solid policy? On Startup Daily today, startup specialist Claudia Barriga-Larriviere writes (we recommend you click here for the full article):
“It is painfully apparent that even though this is the third iteration of Labor for Innovation, nothing really has been done since the first … My concern here is not that these conversations are not useful, because they are, but that they stop when the events are over. There is no speed to action or testable [minimal viable products] that come out of these dialogues. But why is that?
The main issue here is that the government cannot #JDFI. For the uninitiated, this stands for “Just Fucking Do It!””
I largely agree with Barriga-Larriviere. It’s not only important for Labor to hang our with Australia’s startup sector at ritzy events at the Sydney Googleplex. The party also has to undertake deep policy development to work out how it will better support early stage tech companies in Australia to bootstrap, grow, become medium-sized companies and remain on-shore, as well as taking Australian investment.
This will require some deep thinking for Labor. It needs to generate policies which will not only support these objectives, but which are also flexible enough to be enacted while in Government. It will be interesting to see if the party can match with its actions what it appears to be so enthusiastic in talking about.
Image credit: Labor for Innovation