Dr David Evans AM was a commercialisation innovator and achiever during his time as Managing Director of UniQuest from 1994-2000 and, the entire management and staff of UniQuest express their sincere sympathy to David’s family. David passed away on 19 September 2014.

Dr Evans contributions to UniQuest are significant and were instrumental on setting the company on a trajectory that has endowed it with an enviable track record of research commercialisation success in Australia and worldwide. His contributions to UniQuest will not be forgotten.

Under his leadership at UniQuest, the main commercialisation company for The University of Queensland, Dr Evans pioneered the successful ‘hub and spoke’ model. The UniQuest head office acted as a hub providing comprehensive commercialisation support services to its managers of innovation and commercial development on the spokes embedded in the University’s faculties and, in time, new institutes. The embedded feature of the model continues to this day and helps to maximise impact of innovation management and commercialisation for UQ.

Today, The University of Queensland is well known for its track record of innovation management and commercialisation outcomes including Gardasil, the UQ cervical cancer vaccine marketed by CSL and Merck, and the image correction technology used in magnetic resonance imaging machines sold by Siemens and GE Healthcare.

Dr Evans was the lead negotiator in the Gardasil deal – Australia’s first blockbuster vaccine – and the licenses to both Siemens and GE Healthcare. Both technologies continue to make profound global impact predicated on the deals.

The UQ cervical cancer vaccine called Gardasil has also been approved in 120 other countries and, as of April 2014, more than 170 million doses had been distributed worldwide.

The UQ image correction technology is in about two thirds of all clinical MRI systems installed since 1997, benefiting over 8 billion patients worldwide.

Dr Evans was also a driving force in the concept and implementation of what became Uniseed, Australia’s first university-based venture capital fund. Uniseed was jointly founded by UQ and the University of Melbourne (with an initial market capitalisation of $20 million), and Dr Evans left UniQuest to be the Chief Executive Officer of Uniseed from 2000-2003.

In 2014, Dr David Evans AM was named in the Australia Day Honours list as a Member in the General Division of the Order of Australia.

Dr Evans attracted and inspired many of the commercialisation professionals now leading Australia’s efforts to promote our innovation resources globally, including tech transfer specialists, venture capitalists, intellectual property advisors and researchers.

Prior to Dr Evans’s involvement with research commercialisation at UQ, he was involved with technology and knowledge transfer at the University of New England. He was also known for participating in and contributing to “the mother of all demonstrations” when Doug Engelbart showcased the computer mouse and the “dawn of interactive computing” in 1968.

David held a BE from the University of New South Wales and MS (Engineering – Economic Planning), AM (Economics) and PhD (Engineering) degrees from Stanford University.

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