The Western Research Institute (WRI) announced the first project under its Inland Research Fund in a joint initiative with Central NSW Joint Organisation of Councils (formerly CENTROC) to fund visitor economy research.
The Inland Research Fund was established by WRI in 2017 to address gaps in research and data available to rural and regional areas to inform decision and policy makers to better address opportunities and issues in inland NSW. WRI has reinvested its own money into the Fund and is seeking collaborators to match funding to produce much needed subsidised research projects to assist those areas that would otherwise struggle to fund extensive research programs.
“WRI has been working towards the implementation of the Inland Research Fund for several years now. Setting the policy agenda and priorities for the Fund has been a focus of our Board of Directors since 2017”, said WRI Chair Juliet Duffy.
“Having our first co-contributors come on board means that WRI can begin to focus our attention on research projects sponsored by the Fund”.
“The Central NSW Joint Organisations of Councils has been excited about WRI’s initiative to create the Inland Research Fund since it was announced” said the Chair, Cr John Medcalf.
“The research priorities identified by WRI align strongly with the needs of our member Councils and will go along way to providing them with key information to grow into vibrant, sustainable regional centres.
“WRI has identified that tourism data available for regional centres doesn’t go far enough to provide the kind of information councils, businesses and tourism operators and marketers need to understand what their key point of difference is, and who is visiting their town and why”, said WRI CEO Kathy Woolley.
“Being able to direct our own funding towards research projects like this one is very exciting, and we are encouraged by the level of interest across the whole state with organisations very eager to access this level information.”
So far WRI has contributed $100,00 in seed funding towards the Inland Research Fund. Further collaborations on research projects part funded by the WRI Inland Research Fund will be developed in the future.
More information about the Inland Research Fund can be found on our website.