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Vietnamese Digital Transformation Initiatives Gets Australian Support

The Australian Government has announced a grant of nearly AUD1.4 million (around US$1 million) for four Vietnamese high-tech application initiatives in the field of digital transformation, through the Aus4Innovation Programme. The four initiatives have been funded within the framework of the Innovation Partnership Grants under the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s Aus4Innovation Programme in cooperation with the Vietnamese Ministry of Science and Technology.

Selected from nearly 70 initiatives in the 3rd round of the Aus4Innovation Partnership Grants, with the theme ‘Enhancing Digital Transformation’, the projects will be joint ventures between universities, research organisations, and enterprises of Australia and Vietnam. The Australian Ambassador to Vietnam noted that building on the success of previous Aus4Innovation Partnership Grants, the organisation will continue supporting initiatives that address Vietnam’s most pressing socioeconomic growth challenges. International collaboration in emerging areas of science and technology, like artificial intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT), will be especially important as the country recovers from COVID-19. Healthcare, natural disaster management, sustainable agriculture, and nature conservation sectors all provide opportunities for widespread digital transformation that will have a lasting positive impact. According to a news report, the projects include:

Augmented reality to improve access to healthcare in remote areas – an initiative to employ augmented reality technology to improve the effectiveness of remote tele-mentorship between experts in urban centres and less-experienced healthcare staff in remote areas. Ultimately supporting better outcomes for urgent and complex patient cases, the project will be delivered through a partnership between the University of Tasmania and Bach Mai Hospital, with a budget of AUD387,245 (over US$285,000).

Smart Eye to improve sugar industry productivity – a project to develop a system incorporating drone technology and artificial intelligence of things (AIoT) to allow local farmers in Thanh Hoa Province to monitor nutrition levels and disease prevalence in sugarcane fields. This will improve productivity and reduce production costs. The grant will be delivered through the University of Wollongong and VIGREEN, a tech start-up, with a budget of AUD300,000 (US$221,00).

AI/IoT Technology to enhance search and rescue capacity – a project that aims to enhance search and rescue operations in Vietnam during natural disasters by using the latest digital transformation technologies, including unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), AI, and remote sensing technology. The initiative will be delivered collaboratively by the University of Technology Sydney and Le Quy Don Technical University, with a budget of AUD440,000 (over US$324,000).

AI-powered dashboard for environment ecosystem management – an initiative that brings together leading experts in AI, machine learning, IoT, environmental engineering, and conservation biology to transform the environmental management of Tram Chim National Park. Work will be led by the University of Wollongong and the Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology, with a budget of AUD250,000 (over US$184,000).

The projects selected for funding are not only practical regarding the application of advanced technologies in areas of critical need in Vietnam, but they are also very meaningful in today’s context, an official noted. Partnership Grants are an important part of the AUD13.5 million (US$9.96 million) (2018-2022) Aus4Innovation Programme. It is funded by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), managed by Australia’s national science agency, CSIRO, in strategic collaboration with the Ministry of Science and Technology of Vietnam.


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