The largest contingent of representatives from French universities and research institutions will be in Adelaide today to explore new ways of working together with their Australian counterparts.

The first South Australian-French Tertiary Education and Research Workshop will focus on meeting future workforce development training and skills challenges by tailoring courses to the needs of businesses.

It will identify further opportunities to nurture relationships between the main Australian and French stakeholders in the $50 billion Future Submarine contract.

Premier Jay Weatherill and Ambassador of France to Australia H.E. Christophe Lecourtier will also sign a letter of intent which will strengthen exchanges in higher education and scientific research between South Australia and France.

Background

The State Government and the Embassy of France in Australia are hosting the SA-France Tertiary Education and Research Workshop today and tomorrow at the National Wine Centre.

The workshop has been developed under the Memorandum of Understanding signed in November 2016 by Premier Jay Weatherill and Ambassador Christophe Lecourtier which paved the way for Team SA and Team France to collaborate across a number of areas.

The MoU formalised South Australia’s growing partnership with France which has continued to grow stronger since French company DCNS was selected to build Australia’s 12 future submarines.

More than 150 people will attend the workshop including 30 from French universities and companies, and with nine coming from DCNS’ Paris office.

Quotes attributable to Education and Child Development Minister Susan Close

It’s an honour to welcome our international and interstate visitors to this workshop.

It’s a valuable opportunity for them to connect with representatives from our local universities and research institutions and to exchange ideas on common priorities.

The workshop builds on the MoU that HE Mr Lecourtier and I signed earlier this year which focusses on French language and intercultural learning as well as teacher exchange opportunities.

I would also like to acknowledge Mr Lecourtier for his commitment to fostering a genuinely reciprocal relationship between South Australia and France. As this is his last visit to Adelaide before completing his posting at the embassy, I wish him all the best and thank him for his pursuit of prosperity for our jurisdictions.

Quotes attributable to His Excellency Christophe Lecourtier

It is my pleasure to be in Adelaide for this workshop which marks a very important milestone for education and scientific cooperation between France and Australia.

Through this workshop, we wished to bring together each stakeholder that is fundamental to the global, collaborative and innovative relationship we aspire to: the industry, French universities and research organisations, universities from all around Australia, State and Commonwealth governments.

The challenges for research and training linked to the construction of the submarines are significant and offer a fantastic opportunity to develop new collaborations.