The Melbourne Accelerator Program (MAP) has been named the eighth best university business accelerator in the world for 2015. 

The result places MAP, one of the University of Melbourne’s flagship entrepreneurship programs, as the number one such accelerator in the country and second in the Asia-Pacific.

The rankings are compiled annually by Swedish firm UBI Global, an international group specializing in the analysis of business incubation around the world. MAP was previously ranked 13th in 2014.

The rankings cover a more than 400 incubation programs in over 70 countries.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Glyn Davis said the result highlighted just how relevant universities are to the current innovation debate in Australia. “The task of universities is to help make our economy more innovative, productive and diverse. Programs like MAP help us achieve these lofty goals, by encouraging future generations to be inventive and to support their ideas and endeavors accordingly.”

MAP Program Director Rohan Workman said the result was very pleasing. “It’s wonderful to see MAP recognised internationally as a benchmark accelerator program. There are many talented entrepreneurs around the University and we’re looking forward to supporting even more of these into the future. 

Dr Charlie Day, the Director of the Carlton Connect Initiative where MAP is based, said it has been incredibly rewarding to watch the growth of MAP over the past few years.

“In particular, it has been great to see a growing dynamism in the entrepreneurship ecosystem across the whole University community, as our talented staff and students make the most of the opportunities presented by new technologies and disruptive business models.”

It has been a watershed year for innovation at the University, with the signing of partnership agreements with the Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Centre and Australia Post, as well as the launch of the Masters of Entrepreneurship and the Wade Institute.