Around the year 2002, the nation's productivity growth began to decline. John Howard was Prime Minister and Australian innovation policy was dominated by the free markets. Productivity and innovation remain Australia's biggest challenges in an otherwise successful economy. So what can we do about it?

Beginning her research career at Yale as a PhD student, Associate Professor Elisabetta Magnani is an expert in the area of Labour Economics and she's worked extensively on issues of technological, demographic and organisational change.

What is standing in Australia's way to becoming an innovation powerhouse? Elisabetta argues our heavy reliance on multinational tech companies overlooks the role that small firms can, and should play in the process of technological innovation.