//participating regions

The Queensland Government’s innovation initiative Advance Queensland was launched in July 2015 with initial funding of $180 million and a vision of fostering innovation to create jobs and build a strong and diverse Queensland economy.

Now in 2018 with funding of $650 million, Advance Queensland has already supported thousands of innovators and projects, driving more than 12,000 jobs across the state.

Advance Queensland’s Advancing Regional Innovation Program aims to turn Queensland’s regions into hubs for innovation and enterprise. It will enable local entrepreneurs, business leaders and key industries to collaborate closely and with government to harness innovation and unlock business potential, strengthen existing industries and prepare regional Queenslanders for jobs of the future.

A feature of the QODEX expo will be a Regional Innovation Showcase, showcasing companies supported by the Advancing Regional Innovation Program from each the twelve designated regions.

The regions are:  Gold Coast, Redland & Logan, Ipswich & West Moreton, Moreton Bay, Darling Downs & Maranoa, Sunshine Coast, Wide Bay, Fitzroy, Mackay Isaac Whitsunday, North Queensland, Far North Queensland and Outback Queensland.

Our 12 designated regions:
Gold Coast
Redlands & Logan
Ipswich West Moreton
Moreton Bay
Darling Downs Maranoa
Sunshine Coast
Wide Bay Burnett
Mackay Issac Witsundays
North Qld
Far North Qld
Outback Qld

Darling Downs, Maranoa and Toowoomba

The region is the richest and most diversified home to an extensive range of agricultural commodities including grain, beef, cotton, eggs and horticulture, thus creating a natural food hub of agricultural and food products which is expected to grow as demand from Asia increases. The regions strong agriculture supply chain provide a stable foundation for the agricultural production sector, with the region housing thriving professional services, machinery and technology, marketing and selling centres, processing and packing facilities as well as production input businesses backed by over 100 years of experience.

Far North Queensland

The region has 10 reasons why is it a dynamic, prosperous and growing region.

  1. Flourishing StartUp Eco-System with hundreds of Entrepreneurs
  2. World Class Diverse Economy including Tourism, Farming, Education, Health, Aquaculture and Services
  3. 7th busiest Airport in Australia with over 5 Million Passenger Movements
  4. Daily Air access to Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth
  5. Direct flights to/from Tokyo, Osaka, Hong Kong, Singapore, Bali, Manila, Auckland and Port Moresby. Easy Access to Asia, USA and Europe
  6. Two Cairns based University Campus providing high quality graduates to support labour force
  7. Established communication & innovation hubs
  8. Idyllic Surrounds (doorstep to the Great Barrier Reef  & Heritage Rainforest)
  9. Attractive Quality Lifestyle without the Big City hassles of traffic, cost of living and overcrowding
  10. Tropical Climate without Winter Cold


The Fitzroy region is an area of great economic significance with a Gross Regional Product (GRP) of $16.021 billion (source REMPlan data), contributing greatly to the Queensland and national economies.  Major employing industries include Health Care and Social Assistance, Manufacturing, Mining, Construction, Retail and Education and Training, Agriculture Forestry & Fishing, Accommodation and Food Services and Public Administration and Safety.  Rockhampton is widely regarded as the Regional Capital for the greater Central Queensland area which incorporates the local government areas of Rockhampton, Gladstone and Central Highlands Regions, Banana, as well as Livingstone Shire.  As at 30 June 2015 the estimated population of this greater area was 235,789 (source ABS data) residing across a total area of 117,852 square kms.

Gold Coast

The Gold Coast is a city in transformation.  Growing from an economy built on construction and tourism, the Gold Coast is fast diversifying into a knowledge-based economy. Key areas of strength include: health and medical, education, ICT, food, marine, Creative industries (Film/fashion/music) and sport.

Ipswich and West Moreton

Ipswich and West Moreton stretches across the Lockyer Valley, Scenic Rim Somerset, West Moreton area and Ipswich.  The region continues to build on its success, as it is the fastest growing region in Queensland.  Ipswich is the only Australian city to be twice awarded as an Intelligent Cities Forum global Top 7 Intelligent City. The region’s strategic industries include Defence, Advanced Manufacturing, Food, Property, Building and Construction, Transport and Logistics, Agriculture and Biofutures, Smart City, Tourism, Education, Health, and Sport and Recreation.

Mackay, Isaac and Whitsunday

The Mackay, Isaac and Whitsunday region is full of diversity and boasts some of the largest coal mining deposits in Australia. From its strong agribusiness sector including one of the nation’s largest sugar and bio-commodity producers, through to the sheer beauty found in its rainforests and the Whitsunday Islands surrounded by the Great Barrier Reef. The region is one of the most picturesque and resourceful regions in the country with an abundance of innovation to boot.

Moreton Bay

The Moreton Bay region is strategically located to the north of Brisbane (Queensland) and to the south of the Sunshine Coast.  It has a population of just over 420,000 and is the third largest Local Government Area by population in Australia .From stunning natural attractions to luxury accommodation, Moreton Bay Region has a world to explore between its white, sandy beaches and flourishing hinterlands. Immerse yourself in the local culture, weekly markets, restaurants and cafes, and some of the best kept secrets in Australia.

North Queensland

North Queensland has everything to offer – beautiful natural surroundings begging to be explored, unparalleled lifestyle, an expansive and welcoming environment full of opportunities for individuals and businesses alike.  All that North Queensland has to offer is underpinned by diverse and multiple industries that support its growing population.  From defence, tourism, education, livestock, marine, agriculture, mining and resources, North Queensland is a region to explore and invest in, so as to be a part of its ongoing growth.


The Outback – inland heart of Queensland – covers the regions of North West, South West and Central Western Queensland. The Outback is a sparsely populated and remote region of the state, with a population of 1.9% of the state and covers approx 65% of the state’s geographical region.  Agriculture, tourism and mining are the major economic drivers.  The Outback has been the birthplace of many Queensland icons, including Australian Stockmen’s Hall of Fame, The Tree of Knowledge and QANTAS as well as the towns of Birdsville, Mt Isa, Charleville and Longreach.

Redland and Logan

Logan & Redlands is strategically located in SEQ and is home to one of 10 Queenslanders. The region enjoys enviable geographic and natural advantages. Logan is situated a short 21km south of Brisbane, strategically located in the heart of SEQ’s rapid growth and transport corridors. Redlands is 26km south east pf Brisbane and is recognised as the gateway to Moreton Bay’s marine environment and to the Pacific Ocean further east.  Economically, Logan & Redlands’ location provides ready access for workers and consumers travelling to the major centres of Brisbane and the Gold Coast. Businesses in Logan & Redlands are able to reach out to growing markets in neighbouring regions and internationally due to our proximity to Brisbane International Airport and the Port of Brisbane.

Sunshine Coast

A magnet for big thinkers, experienced leaders and world class talent, the Sunshine Coast offers a supportive and encouraging environment for businesses through industry collaboration and regional leadership. With progressive projects such as Smart City Maroochydore, International Airport expansion, International broadband submarine cable and University Hospital, the Sunshine Coast is not only a beautiful place to live, but also a region of innovation and forward thinking. A new report by Australia’s leading demographer Bernard Salt has already determined that the Sunshine Coast is set to become the home of nimble businesses, tech-savvy millennials and young families in a major transformation set to reinvent its leisurely seaside image.

Wide Bay Burnett

The Wide Bay–Burnett Region is located between 170 and 400 kilometres north of Brisbane and is a hotbed of innovation in industries as diverse as tourism, agriculture, forestry, fishery, mining, and manufacturing. With World Heritage listed Fraser Island, Lady Elliot Island, the UNESCO recognized Great Sandy Biosphere, marine parks, wetlands, ancient rainforests, a stunning coastline of pristine white sandy beaches, Mon Repos turtle rookery and the best Whale Encounters experience in the world on our doorstep, where else would you want to be?