Session program


Focus Session



ON startups: insights with hindsight (what I wish I’d known from the start) 


Authentic perspectives shared from several Australian deep tech ventures builders and ON Alumni.

What were the step-changes that led to their success and what learnings can they share now to those following in their footsteps? Hear the meaningful lessons that marked their journey, what they would differently today, who helped them along the way, and find out what they put down to pure luck. 

Thoughts for this session:

Who do you know in our community who may be up against some of these challenges and how can you empower the ecosystem? 


Tennille Eyre – Executive Manager Innovation Programs, CSIRO 


James Bradley – Co-Founder, Diffuse Energy 

Helen Souris – CEO, CardiHab 

Louise Brown – CEO and Director, HydGene Renewables 

Innovation visionaries: leading the frontier with Clare Fairfield 


Join us for an electrifying speaker session with leading venture capitalist and venture builder, Clare Fairfield, as he reveals the intricacies of navigating the dynamic American market and beyond.


Get ready to gain unparalleled insights into the world of venture capital and entrepreneurship from an industry trailblazer. Discover the strategies that have propelled his startups to success, learn from his hands-on experience in creating and scaling ventures, and discover his secrets to driving innovation on a global scale.

This exclusive interview promises to be an eye-opening journey into the realms of innovation, investment, and lessons for Australian entrepreneurs from the learnings Clare can share, making it a must-attend event for anyone with ambitions in the world of startups and innovation. 


Phoebe Jackson Morison – Manager ON Innovation Program, CSIRO 


Clare John Fairfield – Executive Chairman, Venture Capital Institute  

Celebrating diversity in innovation 


This engaging panel discussion will explore the vital theme of diversity in innovation, shining a spotlight on unique and inspiring stories from Indigenous, female, and rural perspectives.


Our distinguished panellists will share their personal journeys and experiences, discuss the challenges they’ve overcome, the change they’ve championed, and the transformative power of inclusion in advancing technological progress.

Join us for an eye-opening conversation that celebrates diversity as a driving force for successful innovation and underscores the importance of actively enabling equal opportunities in shaping our future. 


Torres Webb – Indigenous Research Projects Advisor, CSIRO 


Luli Adeyemo – Executive Director, TechDiversity and  Founder/Director, Best Case Scenario 

Joni Sytsma – CTO, iLAuNCH Trailblazer, UniSQ 

Scott Allen – Managing Director, Nallawilli Pty Ltd

Storytelling for success 


Unlock the art of telling your own story in this masterclass delivered by Catriona Dixon, Founder of Toothless Parrot Communications, where you’ll discover the key to crafting narratives that resonate with any audience and elevate how your personal or venture story is represented.


You’ll gain the skills to weave compelling accounts that captivate, connect, and inspire, making you an influential and persuasive communicator.

This masterclass will empower you with a versatile narrative toolkit, enabling you to adapt your story across diverse contexts and audiences. Don’t miss this opportunity to master the craft of storytelling craft and supercharge your path to success… then flex your new talent at the ON Core networking session! 


Catriona Dixon -Top Bird, Toothless Parrot Communications


Main Event



National interventions powering innovation 


Delve into current and emerging national innovation strategies with a fireside chat exploring national interventions to enable deep tech innovation.

Uncover the robust programs and funding avenues tailored to fast-track deep tech innovations and explore unique insights into how these initiatives can pave the way for groundbreaking advancements, offering a glimpse into the collaborative landscape between public policy and cutting-edge technology.  

Thoughts for this session:

An exclusive opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of how Government is fostering innovation in the realm of deep tech. Do you know how government can support you? 


Dr Jill Freyne – Deputy Chief Scientist, CSIRO 


Dr Thomas Ting – Executive Director, Australia’s Economic Accelerator 

Sandra Roussel – General Manager Commercialisation, Department of Industry, Science and Resources 

Dr George Feast – Deputy Director SME Connect, CSIRO 

The power of the innovation intersection: where commercialisation and investment collide 


Prepare for an enlightening panel discussion and Q&A session that delves into the roles to be played in accelerate deep tech ideas, by showcasing insights from across the ecosystem. Industry, investment, and innovation venture representatives will unveil actionable insights aimed at accelerating and unlocking deep tech innovation.

Explore tangible strategies that drive concepts to market, empowering you with practical knowledge to navigate the landscape of commercialisation and investment.  

Thoughts for this session:

This discussion offers a rare opportunity to gain specific, outcome-driven guidance that can fuel and advance your individual – and critical – role in the innovation ecosystem. Do you know who else in the room can support you? 


Jen Baxter – Head of Operations, Main Sequence and Executive Manager in CSIRO Strategic Programs


Callum Benson – Senior New Ventures Manager, Monash Innovation 

Dr Silvia Pfeiffer – CEO and Co-Founder, COVIU 

Clare Birch – Investment Associate, Blackbird