The Australian Computer Society (ACS) has backed the Victoria government’s new ICT plan but urged it to increase IT student numbers.
To help boost ICT in the state, the plan proposes government assistance in two major areas: Capability development and ICT-enabled innovation.
Capability development will involve working with the ICT sector to ensure the right conditions exist in Victoria to support the growth of internationally competitive and recognised ICT businesses.
ICT-enabled innovation will involve working with industry and the education and research sectors to make sure R&D infrastructure and expertise, skilled and innovative people and high-capacity broadband infrastructure are in place to support innovation across the economy.
ACS Victoria chairman, Ian Dennis, said in a statement that without an increase in students studying ICT, sustained economic growth would be difficult to deliver in the future.
According to Dennis, there are currently 2300 domestic ICT higher education enrolment commencements in 2010, and 10,000 ICT students in Victoria.
“It is pleasing to see the government continuing the attitude of their predecessor governments in recognising the economic significance of the 140,000 Victorians working in ICT occupations, and the 87,000 of those, working in ICT companies in Victoria, whose achievements generate $25 billion annual revenue,” he said.
Dennis added that ICT represents nine per cent of Australian gross domestic product (GDP) with only finance and insurance making a larger contribution as an industry sector to national wealth.
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