The Vision Cooperative Research Centre (Vision CRC) was established in July 2003 under the Australian Government's Business Cooperative Research Centres Programme, continuing for 12 years until 30 June 2015. The centre comprised outstanding Australian and international researchers and a range of leading industry organisations, conducting programs in the areas of myopia, new biomaterials for vision correction, ocular comfort and vision care delivery.
Vision CRC superseded the Cooperative Research Centre for Eye Research and Technology (CRCERT), one of the first CRCs, which operated from 1991-2003. CRCERT was a major success, establishing itself as a premier site for ground-breaking eye care research, new vision correction products and technology development, provided quality education to postgraduate students and trained many thousands of practitioners and educators throughout the world.
It has also participated in global blindness prevention efforts through its vision care delivery program and the activities of its essential participants - the International Centre for Eyecare Education (now Brien Holden Vision Institute Foundation), Centre for Eye Research Australia and the LV Prasad Eye Institute.
Vision CRC received a total of $59 million in Australian Government funding from 2003 until 2015. This includes $32 million for the 2003-2010 period; $22 million for 2010-2015; and $5 million for a supplementary project from 2013-2015. Over $300 million in royalties from products co-developed by CRCERT and Vision CRC had been generated for CRC participants by 1 July 2015.
With funding of Vision CRC ceasing, each program has been concluded or transitioned to lead participant, Brien Holden Vision Institute or Adventus Technology Inc. Intellectual property developed through the CRC has been licensed to the Brien Holden Vision Institute or Adventus Technology Inc to continue the commercialisation process.
Vision CRC will continue to operate as the administrative centre of The Myopia Institute, a virtual international collaboration of researchers, public health specialists, optometrists and ophthalmologists, to deliver the knowledge and information needed to inform the world about the global challenge of myopia and its related conditions. The Myopia Institute will investigate and report on evidence-based strategies for reducing vision impairment and blindness caused by myopia. It will provide evidence for people, governments, professionals, teachers, children and society in general, on the nature of the potential adverse influence of myopia on health, education, social and economic welfare, and vision.
Royalty payments resulting from products developed by CRCERT and Vision CRC will fund this new initiative.