Panel: How simple tech became revolutionary – a behind the scenes view on three industry pivots!

Tech for tech’s sake is redundant in business, especially where margins are thin, customers are fickle and skilled staff can be hard to find. But when the tech works, when it becomes a silver bullet, that’s when tech becomes revolutionary.

This session is not a case study. It is a ‘behind the scenes’ look at how leaders have arrived to their aha moments, and how they have seized the potential of the tech in front of them and created a business powerhouse by taking a leap of faith.



Dimity Dornan, Executive Director & Founder, Hear and Say / Bionics Queensland

Dr Dimity Dornan AO is an entrepreneur, speech pathologist, researcher, Chair of Bionics Queensland and a Fellow of Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering. In 1992 she established Hear and Say as a leading not-for-profit for children with hearing loss learning to listen and speak, particularly with surgically implantable hearing technology like the bionic ear.

Dr Dornan’s current work aims to take outcomes similar to the majority of bionic ear recipients to other new spinoff devices. She has been recognised with numerous awards and was inducted in the Queensland Business Leaders Hall of Fame (2017), awarded the Business Leader of the Year – India Australia Business and Community Awards (2017), Australia Not For Profit Technology Awards 2018 Lifetime Achievement award (2018) and Queensland’s Senior Australian of the Year (2018).

Brett Mathieson, General Manager, Watkins Steel

Brett Mathieson has been the General Manager of Watkins Steel since 2017. Brett has a Bachelor in Business, Rural Management from UQ; and over 30 years of relevant industry experience across structural steel, construction, and project management.
He embodies the “make it happen” philosophy that drives the business and thrives on the fast-paced environment that embraces change, and innovation and technology are at the forefront of the company’s expansion.

Lucy Poole, Head of Government Digital Experience, Digital Transformation Agency

Lucy Poole is the Head of Government Digital Experience at the Digital Transformation Agency. In this role, Lucy is responsible for improving the digital delivery of government services across the Commonwealth. Lucy also leads our cooperation with state and territory jurisdictions to ensure service delivery is consistent, easy and simple for all users.

In previous roles at the DTA, Lucy was responsible for APS-wide digital capability and culture as well as program and policy responsibility for myGov.

Moderated by: Prof Marek Kowalkiewicz, Chair in Digital Economy , QUT

With a passion for exploring bleeding edge technologies and using them to create opportunities and solve problems, Marek has extensive industry based innovation implementation experience together with a strong academic background.

His role of Senior Director, Products and Innovation with SAP, Silicon Valley saw him successfully lead teams of researchers and developers in many innovative projects. He drove the set up of a brand new SAP Research centre in Singapore and SAP’s newest, flagship series of developer events, d-kom.

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