ReWine sells wine directly from the barrel

While staying in Melbourne in February 2017, I stumbled upon ReWine on Queen Victoria Market. It’s a local retail company, selling wine by the glass or in refill bottles directly from the barrel of regional wineries.

I really like the concept behind this:

“We buy wines that we like direct from wineries in our own tanks and bring them to Melbourne. Usually they’re ready to go. Occasionally, if we feel we can enhance a wine we can blend it and mature it until we’re happy that it’s at its best for you to enjoy. ReWine has wine stored in the barrel at the Queen Victoria Market and our wine bar and shop in Brunswick East. We generally sell in our own refillable glass bottles, but can sell wine in any volume that you can carry home.”

Source: About ReWine

When I lived in Sydney in 2016, I tried a great variety of Australian wines, joined Naked Wines as an Angel and was on a quest to find what I like most. It was not easy at times, especially with Australian white wines. Although I certainly found some great Australian reds and some select whites that I did like, most wine menus left me unsatisfied at times.

At ReWine I enjoyed almost all wines they offered, the Viognier and the Reserve Shiraz being my favorites. With their selection of local cheese it was easy to find a reason to come back several times during my stay for refills.

Impressions from Melbourne

In February 2017 I spent 2 weeks in Melbourne and explored the city and its surroundings. I went there to attend the ACERE conference 2017 and I presented a research paper on the entrepreneurship policy in Sydney, where I spent several months in 2016.

All things considered, Melbourne is very different from Sydney. It misses the iconic coastline with stunning beaches for one. Also it feels much more urban and condensed, catering to artsy and hipster crowds. Another difference is, that the public transport system not only seems to be far better developed, it actually works (and offers a free tram zone in the central business district).

Apart from some very nice cafés and restaurants, I particularly enjoyed the Queen Victoria Market and went there several times during the 2 weeks for food and wine. I can also recommend Higher Ground, my favorite café for breakfast, lunch or an early glass of wine.

The Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road, a classic tourist dominated route along Victoria’s coastline, was very nice as well but not as great as  advertised in my opinion. Having travelled along Highway 1 in California for quite a few times, I would still chose the latter over the Great Ocean Road on any day. Still the roadtrip provided ample opportunities to stop for panoramic views.

It was fun to explore Melbourne and I really had a good time. But to answer an apparently pressing question of the many people I talked to in Melbourne, I liked Sydney even more.

Entrepreneurship Policy Case Study: City of Sydney’s Tech Startups Action Plan

During my time at UNSW in 2016, I worked on a case study to review Sydney’s entrepreneurship policy approach. The case study was presented in February 2017 as a peer reviewed paper at the ACERE Conference in Melbourne, Australia.

ACERE
Australian Centre for Entrepreneurship Research Exchange

In reviewing the City of Sydney’s Tech Startups Action Plan, a comprehensive document, outlining the city’s strategy towards the entrepreneurial ecosystem and measures undertaken to stimulate its growth, several disconnects between entrepreneurship policy and academic research findings have been discovered:

“Abstract: Public policy can shift the economic composition of a region. Many policy makers promote entrepreneurship under the assumption of a link between new ventures and economic growth and job creation. While this link is hotly debated in scientific literature, this literature and evidence base does not necessarily inform public policy. This project explores the (dis)connection between municipal innovation policy and the academic literature, using the City of Sydney’s recent Tech Startups Action Plan as a case study. This paper makes four contributions. First, comparison of the first and second parts of the review reveals several disconnects between the plan and the literature on entrepreneurship policy. Second, the origins of these disconnections are traced back to how relevant scientific findings had not been considered in the composition of the Tech Startups Action Plan. Third, this review reveals further deficiencies regarding the plan’s proposed implementation. More specifically, although the plan attempts to consider the entire ecosystem and its challenges, and introduces metrics to track the ecosystem’s growth, the plan lacks concrete implementation methods. Overall, this plan exemplifies challenges in developing municipal entrepreneurial policy. As a fourth contribution, this paper proposes means for closer collaboration between the research community and policy makers.”

Source: Recke, M. P., Bliemel, M., 2016. The City of Sydney’s Tech Startups Action Plan: A Policy Review.

The peer reviewed paper was used as a basis for further development of the research as well as for a similar case study of the innovation policy in Hamburg, Germany, and its impact on the regional entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Impressions from ACERE conference 2017 in Melbourne

In February 2017 I attended the ACERE conference 2017 in Melbourne as a speaker to present a case study on the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Sydney and the regional entrepreneurship policy. The paper was created in 2016 during my time at UNSW Business School in Sydney.

“ACERE stands for Australian Centre for Entrepreneurship Research Exchange, an annual conference in its 11th year. Initiated by Professor Murray Gillin AM and inspired by the Babson College Entrepreneurship Conference (BCEC) in the United States, these conferences were organised annually by Swinburne University (and co-hosts around Australia and New Zealand) under the label “AGSE IERE” (2004-2011). Queensland University of Technology (QUT) Australian Centre for Entrepreneurship (ACE) has produced the ACERE Conference since 2012.”

Source: ACERE conference

It was the first time I attended the ACERE conference and it was a very interesting experience. The discussions around presented research papers were both constructive and inspiring and I certainly met some very interesting people over the course of the conference.

The conference was held at NAB’s The Village and was hosted by QUT (Australian Centre for Entrepreneurship Research at Queensland University of Technology) and RMIT University. The location itself was kind of interesting as well and certainly the most open corporate bank office space I have ever seen.

For anyone interested on what kind of papers were presented, I attached the conference schedule: ACERE 2017 Program

4G Pocket Wifi with prepaid data plan in Australia

While staying in Melbourne in February 2017, I chose to buy a mobile hotspot to stay online with the various devices I had with me. As in 2016, I chose Vodafone as the service provider, since they seem to offer the best network, coverage, value for money and data options.

I bought a 4G pocket wifi R216H mobile hotspot with a 30 day 8GB prepaid option for AUD 59 (about USD 45 or EUR 43).  Any additional recharge would be AUD 30 for 8GB of 4G data.

pocket wifi
pocket wifi

In the U.S. I just recently used a AT&T GoPhone prepaid plan, offering 4GB with unlimited national calls and SMS for USD 45 . In Germany, Vodafone’s corresponding 5GB prepaid plan would be around EUR 35 depending on the service provider. So in terms of mobile broadband, Australia is a good place to be.

During my time in Australia the pocket wifi mobile hotspot never failed me. I used it with up to 4 devices (2 iPhones, 1 iPad Pro and an Apple Watch) both in Melbourne and on the Great Ocean Road. The advertised 10 hour battery life is easily matched and with mobile battery packs this can easily be extended to have a full day of mobile internet access with just one SIM card and one prepaid package.

So for anyone traveling in Australia, I can definitely recommend both Vodafone as a decent service provider as well as the pocket wifi devices they offer in combination with their prepaid data plans.

Joining ACERE Conference 2017 to present research findings

In February 2017 I will be at ACERE Conference (Australian Centre for Entrepreneurship Research Exchange) in Melbourne, Australia, to present research findings as a speaker. The conference will be held at NAB’s The Village and is hosted by QUT (Australian Centre for Entrepreneuship Research at Queensland University of Technology) and RMIT University.

I worked on a case study of Sydney’s entrepreneurship policy and strategy towards the regional entrepreneurial ecosystem, outlined in the City of Sydney’s Tech Startup Action Plan, a comprehensive document created in collaboration with entrepreneurial ecosystem stakeholders as well as industry consulting entities over a period of at least 5 years. The plan was adopted by Council in June 2016 and builds on premises such as links between entrepreneurship and economic growth:

“Encouraging tech startups will create more jobs, boost Sydney’s economy, strengthen global connections and make the city a more desirable place to live, work and visit. Our tech startups action plan details how we will work with industry and government partners to create an environment that enables technology entrepreneurs to start and grow successful global businesses.”

Source: City of Sydney – Tech Startups

The case study was done in 2016 during my time at UNSW (University of New South Wales) in Sydney as an international research student from Hamburg University of Applied Sciences in collaboration with Dr. Martin Bliemel, senior researcher at UNSW Business School, and also consists of input by industry stakeholders, policy makers and startup advocacy groups.

The peer reviewed paper will be presented during the conference and might provide an ample starting point for discussions on effective entrepreneurship policy and additional academic work in the future.

Literature research done in this context also provided a basis for further research and a master thesis on entrepreneurship policy implementation in Hamburg, Germany, that was completed in December 2016.

Impressions From Sydney

In February 2016 I moved to Sydney to do entrepreneurial research at the Business School of the University of New South Wales (UNSW) while working on some projects in Germany remotely. With mostly sunny days, awesome beaches and so much to explore, it turns out to be quite a challenge to focus on the work at hand. I didn’t travel that much yet, since I am still amazed by the feel of living here. I rented a waterfront place in Elizabeth Bay with an amazing view and can’t wait to look outside every time I wake up.

The city reminds me of both San Francisco and Los Angeles in many ways. The hills, architecture, harbour settings and vibes are very similar to San Francisco but still the city is very much spread out in huge suburbs which often resemble my memories of Los Angeles (but with an abundance of sidewalks as a contrast).

Australia just reached a population of just over 24 million, in fact on the exact same day I arrived, 15 February 2016. The vast majority of people live in cities ( 89.2% to be precise) and on the coast. Among many things, this calls for a sophisticated and working public transport system… something Sydney is certainly underperforming at.

Still I managed to explore the city and took some photos while at it:

For more photos follow me on instagram.

I am going to Sydney for a few months

2016 might certainly turn out to be a year with lots of new beginnings, so I am excited. Starting in February, I will be living in Sydney for a few months. Although Sydney is arguably one of the most distant places from Hamburg, I am looking forward to escaping the winter in Europe. My first stop will be Bondi Beach. I suppose it is not a bad place to start. With temperatures around 27° C (81° F) and lots of time on my hands, it will certainly be a trip to be remembered.

While doing some research at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) and working on some projects remotely, I plan to travel around Oceania to make the most out of the trip. So if you have any tips for me about what definitely needs to be on my list, please let me know below, on foursquare or send me an email.

Thank you!

trip tips on foursquare