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Dr Ian Oppermann

Dr Ian Oppermann is the New South Wales Government's Chief Data Scientist and a leader within the IEC community. His extensive career spans nearly 30 years across big data, broadband enabled services, society and technology. He is a thought leader in Digital Economy, a highly cited researcher and notable speaker who has authored six books and co-authored more than 120 papers.  

Dr Ian Oppermann has an extensive academic transcript. Along with Bachelor's degrees in Computer Science and Telecommunications Engineering, he has an MBA from the University of London and a PhD in Mobile Telecommunications from the University of Sydney.

Dr Oppermann has held senior management roles in Europe and Australia as Director for Radio Access Performance at Nokia, Global Head of Sales Partnering (network software) at Nokia Siemens Networks, and Divisional Chief and Flagship Director at CSIRO. From 2015 to 2019, he was also the CEO of the NSW Data Analytics Centre (DAC).

With his wealth of knowledge comes years of experience. Dr Oppermann chairs the New South Wales Artificial Intelligence (AI) Advisory Committee, advising the State Government on how it should use and work with AI. Dr Oppermann also chairs the New South Wales Smart Places Advisory Council, which was established in 2020 to support the NEW Smart Places agenda.

Dr Oppermann is a Fellow of the Institute of Engineers Australia, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, The Royal Society of NSW, and is a Fellow and the Immediate Past President of the Australian Computer Society.

He is also a graduate member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, president of the Australia National Committee of the International Electrotechnical Commission, and president of the International Organization for Standardization's (ISO) JTC 1 strategic advisory committee in Australia.

Dr Oppermann first became involved with Standards Australia in 2014 when he became a participatory member on JTC 1. He is currently participating in many Standards Australia technical committees, including IT-041, Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technologies, IT-042, Internet of Things and Related Technologies, and SC-001, Smart Cities Advisory Group.

In 2019 Dr. Oppermann was appointed to the Standards Australia Board and in 2022 was appointed Chair of the Standards Development and Accreditation Committee and highlights that the importance of standards is that “they help create markets and opportunities.”

“I’d especially like to call out the work of the Data Usage Working Group (JTC1 SC 32 WG6), which is forging ahead with its foundational work which will underpin many aspects of the digital world.”

Dr Oppermann was recently recognised as a 2022 Global Top 100 Innovator in Data and Analytics for his work in data sharing, AI and Smart Cities. His contribution to these emerging areas particularly supports the industry standardisation of Smart Cities to ensure help deliver on the goals of improved social, economic and environmental outcomes.

“It is hard to think of anything more complex than a city, and to make a city “smart”, consideration must be given to many competing needs. From the need to build and maintain plumbing, buildings, roads, communications networks, and then to bring these to life through sensors to harness data flows and create insights. There are many factors which need to come together,” Dr Oppermann said.

Dr Oppermann highlights the importance of and need for data usage and data driven solutions when designing smart cities as it guides designers on what they are aiming to achieve.

“It allows us to describe improvements in safety, liveability, resilience, and sustainability. Over time we get a better sense of what we mean by liveability or sustainability which is informed by the understanding of the journey of people, communities, businesses and so on,” he concluded.

Dr Oppermann is a passionate and innovative thinker who is shaping our future and what our cities and data usage will look for years to come. His work allows clear networks of communication with the NSW Government and its various governing bodies to ensure effective standards development.

“Dr Oppermann is a powerful force, shaping national and international standards and the future direction of the IT industry,” said Standards Australia CEO, Adrian O’Connell.  

“We’re honoured to work closely with him and have to opportunity to learn from his acute insight.”