Asialink National ICT Forum

I attended the Asialink National ICT Forum in Melbourne this morning.

There were some great speakers:

  • Senator Stephen Conroy, Federal Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy
  • Mike Quigley, CEO, NBN Co
  • David Thodey, CEO, Telstra
  • Hiroki Kuriyama, Head of Corporate Strategy, NTT Japan
  • Datuk Badlisham Ghazali, CEO, Multimedia Development Corporation, Malaysia
  • Dr Tim Williams, Director of Consultancy, Publicani, UK

Among some of the more memorable quotes:

David Thodey: “The Digital Economy is the Economy and the Economy is Global.”

Tim Williams: “The NBN should be considered a de facto Sovereign Wealth Fund for Australia”

Mike Quigley: “The success [of the NBN] will depend on applications – the NBN is [merely] an enabling platform”

Hiroki Kuriyama also gave an excellent presentation on what NTT (together with other carriers and the Japanese government) have been able to achieve in Japan via their highly developed high-speed network.  This network includes 19m homes with FTTH (fibre to the home) and many are now also installing fibre in the home (FITH)!

Most interesting talk was Tim William’s was an overview of the Connecting Communities report, which was commissioned by Huawei.

Two quotes from the report:

‘The full value of broadband includes outcomes around an educated citizenship, an informed democracy, cultural understanding, community and inclusion, social capital, resilience and trust.’

UK Broadband Stakeholders Group

‘Communities and citizens that lack high speed broadband access are at a deficit in comparison to their peers’

London School of Economics

The things Tim talked about really resonated with me: improved access for the disadvantaged, informed democracy, improved prospects for remote/isolated communities.  I would certainly recommend downloading and reading the report.