It all started in the 1980s
Thirty years ago, in 1987 the Small Enterprise Association of Australia and New Zealand (SEAANZ) was born. The foundation of SEAANZ took place at a time when the digital economy was just emerging. In fact the laying of the first transatlantic optic fibre cable was being completed and personal computing was opening up new opportunities for small business and the home-based professional.
When the first SEAANZ conference took place in 1988, in Sydney, the very early work was being undertaken by scientists in Europe and the United States who we linking up their computers via the transatlantic cable. This was the start of what we now know as the Internet. The very next year the Australian Vice Chancellors’ Committee launched Australia’s Academic and Research Network, known popularly as the AARNet . Pioneered by academics and CSIRO scientists, the AARNet grew rapidly over the past 25 years into the global internet system we have today.
Although the pace of technological change has accelerated since the 1980s, the computers are smaller, faster and more powerful, and the clothing has become less "Miami Vice", the purpose for which SEAANZ was founded has remained the same. Small firms remain the cornerstone of the world’s economies and the challenge of advancing and sharing knowledge and best practice in small enterprise research, education, policy and practice continues to be important.
The vision, mission and objectives of SEAANZ have not changed since its foundation in 1987. It is a key affiliate of the International Council of Small Business (ICSB), which now encompasses affiliates and chapters that represent over 80 nations. In 2013 SEAANZ became a foundation member of the Asia Council for Small Business (ACSB). This regional affiliate of the ICSB brings together representatives from China, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore and Malaysia, as well as Australian and New Zealand.
Celebrating 30 years of supporting small enterprise
2017 marks the 30th Anniversary of SEAANZ and we would like to thank all our members, sponsors and supporters for sharing with us this journey. As part of this year of celebration we are calling on all members, and past members, to send us your memories of SEAANZ. This includes any pictures from conferences you have attended, or just memories that you would like to share. We are also collecting any conference papers that you might have from those past conferences. We have been developing an online bibliography that serves as an archive for this work so that it is not lost.
All submissions should be sent to:
Professor Tim Mazzarol
President of SEAANZ
UWA Business School
University of Western Australia
M263, 35 Stirling Highway
CRAWLEY, WA 6009, Australia
Phone: +61 8 6488 3981
Fax: +61 8 6488 1072