Something Digital 2024 August 27-28 Early Bird Ends July 12 Book Now
Something Digital 2024 August 27-28 Early Bird Ends July 12 Book Now

Program. Let us guide you.

Feeling a bit overwhelmed with all the choices? We get it. Take a look at our curated overview, where we’ve handpicked some top sessions for different interests including …

 

For the marketers.

Dive into the evolving world of digital content, where sophistication, personalisation, and AI drive your storytelling. Discover how these advancements enhance human connections and authenticity in marketing.

Sessions you will love.


HEADLINER

Out-of-this-world content – Driving meaningful audience engagement across NASA’s digital ecosystem.

SESSION
Is social media dying? Or does its unquitability guarantee its everlasting future?

PANEL
Hello, I’m your future customer. Dazzle me! (GenZ & Alpha unmasked).

Speakers to blow your mind.

NASA

Brittany Brown

Bluey

Dan Brumm

Writer

Joan Westenberg

NASA

Brittany Brown

Director of Digital & Technology Division

Washington


 

Reaching audiences where they are is what Brittany does.

 

As the lead of NASA’s Digital & Technology Division, it’s her job to translate what’s new in space exploration into engaging, easy-to-understand content for the general public.

 

Brittany executed communications plans for the launch of the first spacecraft on a mission to “touch” the Sun, the first all-woman spacewalk, the launch and landing of the Perseverance Mars rover, the first powered and controlled flight on another planet, the premiere of a documentary about Black NASA astronauts, the first U.S. mission to collect a sample from an asteroid, and countless other events that brought awe and wonder to audiences worldwide.

 

With nearly two decades of communication expertise, she has led marketing, social media, and public affairs strategies for both the U.S. Army and National Public Radio. Driven by her passion for educating others on social media, Brittany developed a social media management certificate program at Georgetown University, where she serves as an adjunct instructor.

Bluey

Dan Brumm

Sound Designer, Bluey


 

For over 15 years I’ve been voicing content professionally for Australian and International markets. From Television & Radio Commercials, to Documentaries and Feature film Animations.

My voice will add warmth and a down to earth sincerity to your brand. I spent my childhood in Cairns, which still colours my accent with a kind of laid back twang, burned in by the North Queensland tropical heat. I can mask it, though it’s a unique quality that gives character to my reads.

I’m also the voice of Uncle Stripe in the global hit Bluey, as well as the show’s Sound Designer. My favourite episodes are Cricket, Curry Quest and Fairytale. If you haven’t watched an episode, you should – this show is a gift to the world.

It’s funny, I never planned to be a Voiceover, but, looking back, it feels like my whole life, mighty forces were pulling me towards this path.

I love this job, and I think you’ll hear that in my work.

Writer

Joan Westenberg

Writer


 

I’m a writer, investor, philosopher and founder. I’ve been published by Wired, the AFR, The Next Web, TIME, etc. Through @Westenberg, I cover tech, economics and humans. As a creator, I help technology companies market their platforms and tell better stories. I founded Idle Ventures, a portfolio company, studio and fund.


For the technologists.

AI, quantum computing, cybersecurity – all advancements changing our world! Join us as we explore the groundbreaking potential of the most significant technological developments since the dawn of computing.

Sessions you will love.


SESSION
Deploying scaleable generative AI projects.

PANEL
From generative AI to mind-reading bots: What’s next in AI?

SESSION
Australia’s quantum opportunity: What does national investment mean for industry?

Speakers to blow your mind.

CSIRO / Australian Government

Aurelie Jacquet

Doctors Without Borders

Kathryn Hymes

University of Queensland

Warwick Bowen

CSIRO / Australian Government

Aurelie Jacquet

CSIRO, Australian Government


 

Aurelie Jacquet is a Principal Research Consultant for CSIRO-Data61 ,and the Director of Ethical AI Consulting. She is a member of the AI Expert Group advising Australia’s Federal Government on the mandatory guardrails needed for AI, and the Chair of the Standards committee representing Australia at the International Standards on Artificial Intelligence. With her expertise, she helps companies scale AI responsibly, obtain AI certification, and navigate the onset of international AI regulations.

She is also an expert for the OECD.AI and has been recognised by Women in AI Ethics as one of the 100 Brilliant Women in AI Ethics globally.

Doctors Without Borders

Kathryn Hymes

Director of Product and Innovation

Washington


 

Kathryn Hymes is a technologist, computational linguist and game designer. Currently she serves as Director of Product and Innovation at Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) where she leads a team of engineers and data scientists to prototype, build and deploy new products to support medical aid in emergencies.

 

Previously, she worked in leadership positions at companies focused on communication, community, and the future of work, most recently as the head of international product expansion at Slack and an advisor at Airtable. She is a game designer and co-founder at Thorny Games (www.thornygames.com), a design studio focused on language and storytelling. Her writing on language and technology has appeared in the Atlantic, Wired, and the New York Times.

 

Hymes has extensive experience in international research and product development, including past work at Baidu in Beijing, as a Fulbright fellow in math in Budapest, and at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Meyrin, Switzerland. She has helped lead technology-focused field research in Japan, Indonesia, India, Brazil, Hungary, and the Netherlands.

University of Queensland

Warwick Bowen

Director, Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Quantum Biotechnology


 

Prof Bowen’s research focuses on the implications of quantum science on precision measurement, and applications of quantum measurement in areas ranging from quantum condensed matter physics to the biosciences. He is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Physics and Director of the Australian Centre of Excellence in Quantum Biotechnology.

For the creators.

Step into the world of intentional design, where ethical considerations, purposeful creation, commercial viability, and user-centricity converge to shape innovation. 

Sessions you will love.


HEADLINER
Driving business towards digital inclusivity: Designing for accessibility.


PANEL
How trust, privacy and responsible data management shapes consumer behaviour.


PANEL
Embracing the awkward dance between authenticity & AI generated content

Speakers to blow your mind.

Take This

Rachel Kowert

Blaklash

Troy Casey

Meta

Yao Ding

Take This

Rachel Kowert

Research Director

Ottawa


 

Rachel Kowert, Ph.D is a research psychologist, the Research Director of Take This, and visiting professor at the University of York (UK).  She is a world-renowned researcher on the uses and effects of digital games, including their impact on physical, social, and psychological well-being. In her current work, she serves as one of the primary investigators on the first grant-funded project from the Department of Homeland Security about games and extremism.

 

She has spoken about her work to thousands of people across the globe, including the United States Congress, United Nations, and Department of Homeland Security. An award-winning author, she has published a variety of books and scientific articles relating to the psychology of games and, more recently, the relationship between games and mental health specifically. She also serves as the editor of the Debates in Media Studies (Routledge) and Psychgeist of Pop Culture (ETC Press) series’.

 

In 2020, she founded Psychgeist, a multimedia content production studio for the science of games and pop culture. In 2021, Dr. Kowert was chosen as a member of The Game Awards Future Class, representing the best and brightest of the future of video games. Dr. Kowert has been featured in various media outlets, including NPR, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, the Atlantic, New York Times, and Wired Magazine. To learn more about Rachel and her work, visit www.rkowert.com.

Blaklash

Troy Casey

Managing Director, Blaklash


Troy is passionate about harnessing economic opportunities to create positive social change for First Nations Australians. He combines his extensive community engagement experience spanning the government, not-for-profit and higher education sectors, with his curatorial practice, working collaboratively with communities to ensure First Nations voices are embedded across projects within public art, placemaking, and urban design.

Meta

Yao Ding

Accessibility Research Lead
Palo Alto


 

Yao Ding currently leads Accessibility user research at Meta, bringing with him over 15 years of experience working with people with disabilities in academia, the clinic, and the tech industry. His contributions include foundational work in integrating accessibility into Facebook for billions of users, as well as in emerging technologies like AR/VR and artificial intelligence. Yao conducts user research to build deep understandings of users with disabilities, and incorporates their perspectives to create accessible and equitable experiences. He is dedicated to upleveling accessibility research at Meta through training, mentoring, setting up research panels, creating rolling accessibility research programs, running accessibility design workshops, and collaborating with academics. He also actively contributes to industry-wide accessibility organizations, helping to shape the next-generation accessibility technology.

For the leaders.

Navigating the ever-changing digital landscape is a challenge in itself, but leading the charge requires a whole new set of skills. At #SD24, we’re zeroing in on the essential tools and strategies that empower leaders to thrive both professionally and personally.

Sessions you will love.


SESSION
A culture of workplace wellbeing starts with YOU!


PANEL
Is a future proof digital career possible? How to manage an ever-changing skills set.


SESSION
Leadership in an era of cyber warfare.

Speakers to blow your mind.

Australian Government

Lieut General Michelle McGuinness

Diving QLD

Lisa Wright

Suncorp Bank

Simon Clarke

Australian Government

Lieut General Michelle McGuinness

National Cyber Security Coordinator, Australian Government


Lieutenant General Michelle McGuinness, CSC was appointed as Australia’s National Cyber Security Coordinator (the Coordinator) on 26 February 2024.

As the Coordinator, LTGEN McGuinness leads national cyber security policy, the coordination of responses to major cyber incidents, whole of government cyber incident preparedness efforts, and the strengthening of Commonwealth cyber security capability.

LTGEN McGuinness has served in the Australian Defence Force for 30 years in a range of tactical, operational, and strategic roles in Australia and internationally.

Prior to this appointment, LTGEN McGuinness most recently served as Deputy Director Commonwealth Integration in the United States Defense Intelligence Agency. In this role, she led policy and cultural reform, and technological integration, including interoperability across information technology, systems and data.

Diving QLD

Lisa Wright

CEO, Diving QLD


 

Lisa is the current CEO of Diving Queensland, as well as an International Olympic Diving Judge. Her dedication to the sport has seen her in roles as a former competitor, coach, and judge at prestigious events such as the Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games, and World Championships. Additionally, she has spent over a decade managing her own fitness business, where she served as a certified movement specialist, personal trainer, and nutritionist. This unique background has shaped her profound understanding of the interconnectedness between work, community engagement, physical activity, and holistic wellness. Lisa’s passion lies in positively impacting lives through the integration of sports, health, community inclusion, and overall well-being.

Suncorp Bank

Simon Clarke

Digital Strategy & CX Lead, Suncorp Bank


 

Simon currently leads digital strategy, insights and customer experience at Suncorp Bank. Simon has spent over 18 years in digital, working in a variety of roles within product management, strategy and consulting; Simon’s passions are banking, innovation and coaching aspiring designers and product owners.

For public good.

Join us as we explore the impact that technology has on our broader societal and cultural landscapes, and how this, in turn, influences the power of the individual.

Sessions you will love.


HEADLINER
Making your vote count: Defending democracy in an AI world.


HEADLINER
Governing the future – Artificial intelligence and public benefit.


PANEL
Maintaining intellectual property rights & data sovereignty for First Nations People.

Speakers to blow your mind.

Institute for Advanced Study

Alondra Nelson

Doctors Without Borders

Kathryn Hymes

Centre for Information Resilience

Nina Jankowicz

Institute for Advanced Study

Alondra Nelson

Harold F. Linder Professor

New York


 

Widely known for scholarship at the intersection of science, technology, and society, Alondra Nelson is the Harold F. Linder Professor at the Institute for Advanced Study. A former deputy assistant to President Joe Biden, she served as acting director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and led the development of the White House “Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights,” a cornerstone of President Biden’s Executive Order on the Safe, Secure, and Trustworthy Development and Use of Artificial Intelligence.

 

In recognition of Nelson’s impactful OSTP tenure, Nature named her to its list of the 10 People Who Shaped Science in 2022. Last year, she was nominated by the White House and appointed by United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres to serve on the UN High-Level Advisory Body on Artificial Intelligence, and was named to the inaugural TIME100 list of the most influential people in the field of AI.

Doctors Without Borders

Kathryn Hymes

Director of Product and Innovation

Washington


 

Kathryn Hymes is a technologist, computational linguist and game designer. Currently she serves as Director of Product and Innovation at Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) where she leads a team of engineers and data scientists to prototype, build and deploy new products to support medical aid in emergencies.

 

Previously, she worked in leadership positions at companies focused on communication, community, and the future of work, most recently as the head of international product expansion at Slack and an advisor at Airtable. She is a game designer and co-founder at Thorny Games (www.thornygames.com), a design studio focused on language and storytelling. Her writing on language and technology has appeared in the Atlantic, Wired, and the New York Times.

 

Hymes has extensive experience in international research and product development, including past work at Baidu in Beijing, as a Fulbright fellow in math in Budapest, and at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Meyrin, Switzerland. She has helped lead technology-focused field research in Japan, Indonesia, India, Brazil, Hungary, and the Netherlands.

Centre for Information Resilience

Nina Jankowicz

Vice President

Washington


Nina Jankowicz, the co-founder and CEO of The American Sunlight Project, is an internationally-recognized expert on disinformation and democratization, one of TIME magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in AI, and the author of two books: How to Lose the Information War (2020), which The New Yorker called “a persuasive new book on disinformation as a geopolitical strategy,” and How to Be A Woman Online (2022), an examination of online abuse and disinformation and tips for fighting back, which Publishers Weekly named “essential.” Jankowicz has advised governments, international organizations, and tech companies, and testified before the US Congress, UK Parliament, and European Parliament.

In 2022, Jankowicz was appointed to lead the Disinformation Governance Board, an intra-agency best practices and coordination entity at the Department of Homeland Security; she resigned the position after a sustained disinformation campaign caused the Biden Administration to abandon the project. From 2017-2022, Jankowicz has held fellowships at the Wilson Center, where she led accessible, actionable research about the effects of disinformation on women and freedom of expression around the world. She advised the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry on strategic communications under the auspices of a Fulbright-Clinton Public Policy Fellowship in 2016-17. Early in her career, she managed democracy assistance programs to Russia and Belarus at the National Democratic Institute.

Program Sneak Peek

Jam-packed with sessions designed to spark your curiosity, challenge your thinking, and equip you with cutting-edge digital tools and trends, Something Digital is a must-attend festival for everyone who wants to stay ahead & drive impact.

Here’s an exclusive preview of what’s to come.

For the marketers

Dive into the evolving world of digital content, where sophistication, personalisation, and AI drive your storytelling. Discover how these advancements enhance human connections and authenticity in marketing.


Sessions sneak peek 👀

 

  • Is social media dying? Or does its unquitability guarantee its everlasting future?
  • Embracing the awkward dance between creative integrity & AI generated content

For the technologists

AI, quantum computing, cybersecurity – all advancements changing our world! Join us as we explore the groundbreaking potential of the most significant technological developments since the dawn of computing.

Sessions sneak peek 👀

 

  • Australia’s quantum opportunity: What does national investment mean for industry?
  • Deploying scaleable generative AI projects

For the creators

Step into the world of intentional design, where ethical considerations, purposeful creation, commercial viability, and user-centricity converge to shape innovation. 

Sessions sneak peek 👀

 

  • Driving business towards digital inclusivity: Designing for accessibility
  • How trust, privacy and responsible data management shapes consumer behaviour.

For public good

Join us as we explore the impact that technology has on our broader societal and cultural landscapes, and how this, in turn, influences the power of the individual.

Sessions sneak peek 👀

  • Making your vote count: Defending democracy in an AI world
  • Tackling AI’s blind spots to foster equity in humanitarian efforts
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