Google Australia has marked the first year of its Digital Future Initiative, the billion dollar research, partnerships, and infrastructure program which has helped upskill Aussies and drive digital transformation.
The search giant has launched six projects over the last year, including two focused on improving digital infrastructure to support growing businesses and a Career Certificate scheme to meet in-demand skills gaps.
“The Digital Future Initiative is about building on the success of Australian ingenuity and ensuring Australia has the capabilities to make the next generation of tech breakthroughs,” said Mel Silva, Google Australia’s managing director.
“We already have an impressive track record as a country, Aussie researchers and entrepreneurs have been responsible for creating some of the most well-known and widely-adopted tech breakthroughs — from wifi to Google Maps. The investments we are making as part of the Digital Future Initiative aim to help put Australia at the forefront of digital technology – and provide all Australians with the opportunity
and ability to benefit from it.
“We’ve also broadened the focus of the Digital Future Initiative to help address urgent challenges — like Australia’s national skills shortage.”
Google established a Melbourne cloud region which provided the infrastructure that Australian businesses needed to innovate and build applications for customers. The company also achieve ‘certified strategic status’ under the Australian Government’s Hosting Cloud Certification Framework. As a result, Google’s security controls meet the requirement to work with government departments across the country, bringing its tech to more people.
In the theme of helping Aussies, Google launched its Career Certificates scheme, a series of online courses to upskill workers with recognised micro-credentials in areas such as digital marketing. It has also made 10,000 scholarship places available for free with a focus on women and Indigenous Australians — both underrepresented groups in the sector.
“We are committed to delivering on our vision for a stronger digital future in Australia — where Australians have access to technology and the skills to use it, businesses have the tools they need to prosper and grow the economy, and where unique collaborations in technology, science and research facilitate life-changing breakthroughs,” added Silva.