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Dr Hugh

One of the 100 most influential telecommunications executives in the world.

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Emerging digital technologies will change the face of all enterprises.

Hugh is globally recognised as a thought leader in telecommunications and was elected as the joint 2009 Australian Telecommunications Ambassador of the Year, named by Global Telecom Business as one of the most 100 most influential telecommunications executives in the world and Smart Company designated him as one of the 12 most influential people in Australian ICT.

Current work

Hugh S. Bradlow is President of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering, a body which elects the best minds in technology to its Fellowship and then commits them to developing strategies which will turn Australia into a world leading technology economy.

Previous experience

Telstra: With a 22-year career at Telstra Corporation, he was the Chief Scientist (in which role he acted as a “forward scout” looking at the longer term technology directions and technology disruption that will impact Telstra and its customers), Chief Technology Officer and Head of Innovation at Telstra, and Managing Director of Telstra Research Laboratories.

University: Before joining Telstra in September 1995, Professor Bradlow was Professor of Computer Engineering at the University of Wollongong in Australia and Professor of Electrical Engineering (Digital Systems) at the University of Cape Town.

Education: Professor Bradlow is a graduate in electrical engineering from the University of Cape Town in 1973 and received the D.Phil. degree for research in experimental nuclear physics from the University of Oxford. He has also attended the Stanford Executive Program. He is an Emeritus Professor of the University of Wollongong, a Professorial Fellow of the University of Melbourne, and a recipient of a Centenary Medal from the Commonwealth of Australia.

Director: Hugh has been a company director for a number of innovation-based entities, including Silicon Quantum Computing Pty Ltd, Allen & Buckeridge, Seed Stage Ventures Board of Directors, Telstra R&D Management Pty Ltd (Executive Chair), Wollongong Uniadvice (Pty) Ltd, Telecommunications Society of Australia and IEEE Communications Society Board of Governors amongst others.

Speaker: During his career at Telstra he has given over 400 presentations, being in high demand as a speaker on technology topics and innovation. His insights into the future are based on applying a deep understanding of emerging technologies to thought experiments about how consumers and businesses will use these technologies once they become mainstream.

Talking Points

Will you conquer digital disruption or will it conquer you?

For virtually any business, this presentation illustrates why their business needs to undergo digital transformation or die. It covers the key technologies that underpin the digital platforms that are driving change in the 21st century: the Internet, Fixed and Mobile Broadband, Cloud services, the Internet of Things, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, high performance computing, blockchain. It also addresses caveats such as cyber security. It then examines how these technologies will reshape different industries, including health, transport, retail, agriculture, energy, smart cities, law enforcement, education, finance. While this presentation covers a very wide space, it is adapted and tailored to the audience and the industry.

What should your children be studying to be successful in the 21st century?

This presentation addresses the question of ‘what should my children do’ and how we as a society must adapt to the change. It reviews key emerging technologies and examines their impact on employment in the future. It then considers the skills that will be required to be successful in this brave new world.

When should you buy your last car?

This presentation validates the feasibility and importance of eliminating human drivers from our public roads in the next couple of decades and covers the technology solutions which will make this possible. It examines the trends that are reshaping the car industry, namely mobility-as-a-service, car sharing, electric vehicles, autonomous vehicles, provides data as to the benefits that this transport revolution brings and describes the actions governments and industry need to take to ensure this outcome. This presentation can cover a wide space for general audiences but can also be specifically tailored to the industries which will be most disrupted in this space, i.e. auto dealerships, insurance, logistics & freight, road building, urban planning, real estate, parking garages, petrol, policing, healthcare, brick & mortar retail, etc.

Can we build artificial brain power to match that of 7 billion humans?

For anyone in IT this presentation illustrates how quickly their current skills will become obsolete. It examines why computer systems are about to take a radical departure from the 70 year old, Von Neuman computer architecture that has dominated our world in the 20th and early 21st century. It examines the underlying pressure to compute at ‘brain scale’, highlights the deficiencies in current ‘classical’ computers and reviews 3 radically new computer architectures that are likely to emerge, namely quantum computing, neuromorphic computing and the “rebooting computing” movement.

Is the current educational system providing your children with the best possible opportunities in the 21st century?

This presentation describes the potential of new technologies to change education and research.

How will you serve and protect digital customers?

Today ‘digital customers’ means a web channel via PC’s or mobile phones.
A set of emerging technologies will provide customers with much richer ways of interacting with companies (e.g. augmented/virtual reality, digital avatars, natural language queries, smart device connections, etc). Customer expectations will be significantly escalated and businesses that cannot adapt will be disrupted by digital start-ups (businesses will find themselves being disaggregated by startups and competitors). However, these new interactions bring with them new risks in terms of cybersecurity, not only to protect your own security, but also the privacy of your customers. This presentation will examine emerging technologies, provide examples of how businesses are already enhancing the functionality of their digital customers and discuss the cybersecurity risks and how to deal with them.
Hugh’s presentation was ‘content rich’ and gave me plenty of food for thought. We are at a tipping point when it comes to the importance of ‘digital’ in our business and personal lives. Hugh’s insights helped to clarify some of the key issues for me. Hugh was a great presenter and raised some really topical issues for board members to reflect on. I enjoyed the fact that the discussion was big-picture, future focused, thought-provoking but realistic. Derwent

One of Australia’s most highly regarded technology futurists

IABC Victoria

Hugh is an engaging speaker and is able to put forward complex issues in a straightforward and easy-to-understand way. He is “good on his feet” in responding to questions from the floor and is undeniably thought provoking in his delivery. In content terms, his presentations are excellent and state of the art. My senior team has nothing but praise for Hugh as a speaker.

Department of Transport and Main Roads
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