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Researchers focus on new approaches to business

24 Jan 2019

Novel approaches to building business in the Moreton Bay region have attracted the attention of Business researchers from the University of the Sunshine Coast.

Dr Wayne Graham and Dr Retha de Villiers Scheepers are eager to conduct industry-supported studies of the Health Hub Morayfield and Moreton Bay Regional Innovation and Tourism respectively this year.

The projects are among five recently announced as USC Industry Connect research partnerships, which are jointly funded by USC and the firms involved in the research.

Dr Graham said he was looking forward to continuing his work with the Health Hub Morayfield, which is set to provide primary health care services at an unprecedented scale in Australia, with plans of having up to 90 GPs in residence and a range of other incorporated services including radiology, psychology, pharmacy and rehabilitation.

Dr Graham said this new business model would allow patients to be directly referred to a specialist in the Health Hub Morayfield, all under one roof and government subsidised (bulk-billed) to support low income residents.

“My research will provide data examining the flow-through of medical services received and how quickly and effectively patient health care needs are met,” Dr Graham said.

“I see the Health Hub Morayfield as an emerging model of improved healthcare services. It’s a model of management and collaboration of a scale that is of interest to organisational researchers.”

Dr de Villiers Scheepers, who specialises in entrepreneurial behaviour within regional communities, is keen to assess how the Moreton Bay Region Industry and Tourism (MBRIT) is boosting regional innovation and capacity building in the Moreton Bay region 

She said the region had a unique business environment and would benefit from the development of a specialised local entrepreneurship model that considers the needs and practices of current innovators.

“With this project, we’re using an entrepreneurial ecosystems model,” she said. “This involves developing an entrepreneurial culture within the region by bringing together entrepreneurs on the ground, economic development providers, suppliers and the university forming a community that supports ventures at various stages.”

Dr de Villiers Scheepers said the project would map the roles played by entrepreneurs already active in Moreton Bay and the impact of a planned Founders Fest event in developing entrepreneurial culture in the region.

“The Industry Connect grant gives us a great opportunity to not only work together but to engage on research,” she said.

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