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TRAM FAQs

Have a question about TRAM? If you can’t find the answers you’re looking for below, get in touch through our contact page for more information.

General
TRAMx
TRAM Track
TRAM Runway
TRAM Air

General

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What is TRAM?
TRAM is a research impact accelerator. Through four immersive programs, we give researchers the skills and mindset to become entrepreneurs. We'll help you transform your research into products and services that have real-world impact.
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What does TRAM do?
TRAM runs a series of programs designed to build entrepreneurial skills for researchers. We're developing a culture of research entrepreneurship that allows researchers to create their own pathways into industry and work effectively with commercial and entrepreneurial colleagues.
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Why was TRAM started?
TRAM was started in 2016 to provide the University’s research community with a clear pathway into industry and maximise the commercial impact of their work. We’re building an entrepreneurial reputation for the University of Melbourne and the Melbourne Biomedical Precinct by delivering tangible, real-world research impact.
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Why do we need TRAM?
There is an increasing focus on universities delivering impact and outcomes, rather than just research outputs. This means funding and careers for researchers and higher degree students will increasingly require them to be as engaged with industry as they are with publishing research. TRAM is developing and celebrating the capability of our research community to be the engines of our knowledge economy, helping create dynamic and disruptive innovations and companies that create export revenue and employment.
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What does TRAM focus on?
We're developing an entrepreneurial mindset among the University of Melbourne’s research community, and this can look slightly different depending on where you're at in your research career. For established academic research staff, we work with you to develop your ability to engage with industry, manage your innovation pipeline, and support career options for junior staff in your labs. For early-career researchers who are considering a commercial-career orientation, we give you the toolkit you'll need to commercialise the research projects you're working on.
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Why do universities care about commercialisation?
Real-world research impact inspires the research community, enhances investor and alumni engagement, promotes staff and student retention and attraction, and allows for expanded career prospects. Safe to say, this is why we do what we do.
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What is TRAM modelled on?
TRAM was modelled on international best practice startup approaches, pioneered at Stanford and Berkeley, that focus on target customer engagement to better understand the customer experience of the problems researchers are solving and the associated care factor. We use the Lean LaunchPad methodology to guide research teams through the fundamentals of building a successful spinout. By taking a systematic, iterative approach, TRAM enables researchers to achieve the full commercial potential of their research.
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Who is on the TRAM team?
Our team includes Dr Simon Wilkins (Program Director), Andrew Rowse (Program Manager), Leonore Ryan (Entrepreneur-in-Residence), Sarah Robertson (Marketing & Communications Manager), Sarah McGrath (Program Experience Coordinator), and Jenni Kirkbright (Executive Officer). Get to know us on our Team page!
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Who can apply to TRAM?
TRAM is open to researchers from across the University of Melbourne and the Melbourne Biomedical Precinct, along with their students and collaborators. We encourage all researchers who are passionate about impact to consider applying.
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What’s the difference between the TRAM programs?
The TRAM programs are designed to be matched to how advanced teams are along their research commercialisation journey. TRAMx is open to early stage or new research teams, TRAM Track and Runway are for teams that already have some traction, while TRAM Air assists more advanced teams who are working toward commercial outcomes. Head to our Programs page to find out more.
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How is TRAM funded?
TRAM receives funding from the University of Melbourne and the Victorian Government (Department of Premier and Cabinet) with the aim of accelerating and enhancing commercialisation outcomes and economic growth for the State, and to enhance Victoria’s standing as a leader in research and education.

TRAMx

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What is TRAMx?
A two-day intensive bootcamp to prepare you for the road ahead and get your head in the game. TRAMx is a great way to get started on your journey towards commercialising research.
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What’s the difference between the TRAM programs?
The TRAM programs are designed to be matched to how advanced teams are along their research commercialisation journey. TRAMx is open to early stage or new research teams, TRAM Track and Runway are for teams that already have some traction, while TRAM Air assists more advanced teams who are working toward commercial outcomes. Head to our Programs page to find out more.

TRAM Track

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What is TRAM Track?
TRAM Track is undertaken by dynamic research teams over eight weeks to build their capabilities. Participants work together with TRAM mentors to test market validation and generate a business model.
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What’s the difference between the TRAM programs?
The TRAM programs are designed to be matched to how advanced teams are along their research commercialisation journey. TRAMx is open to early stage or new research teams, TRAM Track and Runway are for teams that already have some traction, while TRAM Air assists more advanced teams who are working toward commercial outcomes. Head to our Programs page to find out more.

TRAM Runway

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What is TRAM Runway?
TRAM Runway builds on work done in TRAM Track, fine-tuning a problem-solution fit. Over 12 weeks, teams are provided with intensive support to get market-ready and progress their commercial planning and business models.
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What’s the difference between the TRAM programs?
The TRAM programs are designed to be matched to how advanced teams are along their research commercialisation journey. TRAMx is open to early stage or new research teams, TRAM Track and Runway are for teams that already have some traction, while TRAM Air assists more advanced teams who are working toward commercial outcomes. Head to our Programs page to find out more.
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Are teams funded?
Teams accepted into TRAM Runway receive a $25,000 operational budget from their host faculty to finance activity that helps them progress their projects.

TRAM Air

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What is TRAM Air?
TRAM Air is for alumni teams who are working towards specific commercial outcomes. Teams receive tailored support as they move towards important milestones.
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What’s the difference between the TRAM programs?
The TRAM programs are designed to be matched to how advanced teams are along their research commercialisation journey. TRAMx is open to early stage or new research teams, TRAM Track and Runway are for teams that already have some traction, while TRAM Air assists more advanced teams who are working toward commercial outcomes. Head to our Programs page to find out more.

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