New fellowships to further medtech and pharma industry growth

Applications are now open for participants and alumni of the QUT-delivered Bridge and BridgeTech Programs to further their knowledge and commercialisation training with hands-on experience at leading pharmaceutical and medical technology organisations.

A total of 20 industry placement fellowships are being offered each year over four years – 10 associated with the Bridge Program and 10 through BridgeTech.  Successful applicants for each $10,000 fellowship will spend a minimum of three to six weeks with program global partner companies and technology incubators run by pharmaceutical and medical device industry networks.

The fellowships are provided through the $32 million MTPConnect Researcher Exchange and Development within Industry (REDI) initiative to drive med tech and pharmaceutical sector skills development and workforce growth. REDI is funded through the Australian Government’s Medical Research Future Fund.

The Bridge Program began in 2017 and gives researchers and entrepreneurs knowledge, skills and commercialisation training to help them bring new medicines to patients. Sister program BridgeTech, started in 2018, provides training to those seeking to advance new medical devices.

Director of both programs, QUT Professor Lyn Griffiths, said 183 people are currently progressing through the two programs this year and graduates numbered more than 450.

“Bridge and BridgeTech are vehicles to enable more medicines and medical devices to reach the market, and it’s wonderful to see the commercialisation advances that are being achieved by those who have been through the programs,” she said.

“So far, participants across both programs have been involved in a total of 26 patents, 26 start-ups, 30 research and development contracts, 24 clinical trials, and six new product launches.

“The new REDI industry placement fellowships provide another valuable professional development opportunity to our Bridge and BridgeTech alumni and participants.”

Professor Griffiths said leading companies, universities and incubators had recently joined the two programs to bolster networks and enhance knowledge transfer.

Bridge has welcomed leading pharma company Roche, Australian National University (ANU), UNSW Sydney, Yuhan and ACTI. They join founding partners AbbVie, Amgen, Jannsen (Johnson&Johnson), Medicines Australia, MSD, Novartis, Pfizer, Macquarie University.

The new members of the BridgeTech consortium are Bosch, Vaxxas and Australian National University (ANU). They join founding partners Cochlear, Stryker, Siemens Healthineers, Flinders University, University of Melbourne, University of Western Australia, Gadens, Life Sciences Queensland (LSQ), Macquarie University, Magnetica, University of Newcastle, Solentropy, ACTI.

Applications for the 2020 Bridge and BridgeTech Industry Fellowships are open until 16 October 2020. For details, visit

The fellowship program will be officially launched today at an online webinar. Speakers are: Professor Griffiths, QUT Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation Executive Director; Dan Grant, MTPConnect Managing Director and CEO; Erica Kneipp, ANU Head of Research Strategy;  Anand Gautam, Pfizer Worldwide R&D-Asia Pacific Executive Director and Head, Emerging Science and Innovation; Steven Kennedy, Cochlear Global Head of Regulatory Affairs.

Applications for the Bridge and BridgeTech REDI Program fellowships will be open on 16 September 2020 through online submission form.

Email for more information.