During the 2000s a common view in government circles was that governments were over-investing in primary industry research and innovation. In agreement with this view, the Western Australian (WA) government lessened its support for primary industry research and innovation over the last decade. The impacts of this reduced support are seen clearly in the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD). In 2008–09 its agricultural staff count was 1518, yet by the end of 2017–18 this will be under 800, with remaining staff working mostly in regulation, biosecurity and corporate services rather than research. So great has been the erosion of funding and capability in research that the pressing problem is now perceived to be government’s underinvestment in primary industry research and innovation. Government’s current fiscal environment constrains departmental budgets, so the case for government expenditure on primary industry research and innovation needs to be made and soundly argued. This report outlines the case for government expenditure on primary industry research and innovation.
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Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, Research, Innovation, Western Australia, Taxpayers
Kingwell, R. (2018), The rationale for taxpayer support for primary industry research and innovation in Western Australia. Department of Agriculture and Food, Western Australia, Perth. Report.
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