The Department of Commerce uses its science and innovation investment evaluation tool to assist with evaluating applications for funding under the WA Innovation Development Schemes. The department also uses the tool to evaluate the impact of new investments during and at the end of their funding period.
- Accessing the Evaluation Tool
- Why an Evaluation Tool?
- Input to Impact Methodology
- Input to Impact Guidance Notes
Applicants for science and innovation funding under the Industry and Technology Development Act 1998 may be required to complete the evaluation tool. Applicants can access the tool using a username and password authorised by the department as part of the account registration process.
The department recommends using a recent version of Google Chrome as your Web browser when accessing the tool. The tool is also designed to work in Internet Explorer 7 or later; Mozilla Firefox 3.6 or later; or Safari 5.0 or later.
To register for an account or to login, go to the evaluation tool.
You can view the report template (PDF) in which an applicant's evaluation tool input is reported within the Department of Commerce.
The Department of Commerce developed its evaluation tool in response to the Western Australian Science and Innovation Review conducted in 2009 for the Minister for Science and Innovation.
The review recommended the development of a comprehensive framework for evaluating the State Government’s science and innovation investments.
Consultants developed the evaluation tool through extensive consultation with stakeholders. The Technology and Industry Advisory Council provided strategic input and approved the overall design.
The critical element of the tool's evaluation process is determining the intrinsic value of an investment proposal and its projected benefits to Western Australia.
Each evaluation is based on an input to impact methodology which guides applicants in documenting how proposed investments are intended to lead to projected impacts and outcomes in two dimensions:
- economic, social and environmental (triple bottom line) benefits to Western Australia; and
- Western Australian innovation system benefits, namely enhanced research capacity and skill base, business innovation and commercialisation, and links and collaboration.
Investment evaluations measure projected benefits in terms of impact indicators consistent with those defined by the Commonwealth Government and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development.
In addition to using the input to impact methodology to evaluate investments, the department uses it to manage its investments.
The input to impact methodology, which sits at the heart of the evaluation tool, is based on the Commonwealth Government’s Cooperative Research Centres Program Impact Tool.
The methodology is a high level strategic planning system that enables an applicant for investment through the Department of Commerce to identify and make a realistic, transparent and defensible evaluation of the intended impacts (that is, benefits) of their proposed initiative.
For each proposed research program, an applicant using the methodology is asked to systematically describe inputs, activities, outputs, usages and impacts.
Impacts fall into four categories – economic, environmental, social and knowledge economy – and are ideally expressed in quantitative terms. Where this is difficult to achieve, impacts can be expressed in semi-quantitative or qualitative terms using a transparent scoring system.
Forecast impacts are adjusted by factors determined by the applicant’s guided evaluation of:
- the extent to which the impacts can be attributed to the proposed initiative; and
- technical, adoption and impact realisation risks.
The resulting attributed, risk-adjusted impacts are conservative estimates of likely benefits to Western Australia.
The high-level information entered into the input to impact section of the evaluation tool informs the key milestones and outputs for a corresponding Financial Assistance Agreement (FAA). The FAA details the reporting requirement to monitor the initiative’s performance over time.
For detailed information on the input to impact methodology, see the guidance notes (PDF).