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  • 13 Nov 2023 16:03 | Amber O'Keefe (Administrator)

    On Wednesday night, our hotly-anticipated Top Tech Trends Debate was held at Melbourne Connect with a brilliant lineup of panellists pitching their ideas for 'the next big thing' in emerging tech. Debate from all panellists was spirited and some fantastic emerging trends were identified. 

    David Collins advocated for 3D printed body parts being a top tech trend, and brought his own formative printed body part in the form of a general purpose hydrogel mass. 

    Jane Bunn spoke about hyper localised precision weather forecasts being critical to the future of agriculture, and productivity of large construction projects, solar and wind power sites and more. 

    Rupert Walsh spoke to the convergence of biotech and AI through implantable's, and the many use cases big and small that can be addressed though augmented cognition, prosthetic cognition for mental disabilities and related configurations. Perhaps even unlocking personal telepathy (imagine!)

    Nigel Dalton of 
    Thoughtworks ran us through his vision of pervasive personal body cameras not just police and frontline workers. Nigel was wearing is own lapel iEye, and admitted to being an early glasshole, being an early adopter of Google Glasses. 

    Dr Nataliya Ilyushina, aka Dr Pink—outlined her vision of a labour market in which employees are semi-corporatised as their own mini-enterprises within the greater enterprise. And bring their own raft of skillsets and custom toolsets to be both complementary and competitive with their peer employees. She illustrated her proposition though its context of recent workplace experience of the great resignation, quiet quitting, the digital nomads phenomenon, and the not so quiet trend of quitting on TikTok. 

    Ultimately there could only be one winner, and it was over to the audience to vote, with 
    Rupert Walsh emerging victorious!

    The debate was expertly moderated by 
    Gretchen Scott who managed affairs with aplomb and kept presenters to time and topic, while also sprinkling in her own timely interjections throughout! 

    The event was made possible by our major event partner 
    Digital Innovation Futures Victoria Victorian Government
    With thanks to our event sponsor 
    InnovateGPT and event partners Colin Biggers & PaisleyKaleidaNakouduTreadstone Government Grants 

  • 28 Aug 2023 16:31 | Peter Nolle (Administrator)

    In the lead up to Top Tech Trends Debate 2023, we caught up with some of our panellists from last year to reflect on their trend and hear their thoughts on whether the trend has experienced a momentum shift in the last 12 months. Watch the video with former panellist Dr Shaanan Cohney discussing his trend for Privacy Enhancing Technologies.

  • 8 Sep 2022 14:30 | Peter Nolle (Administrator)

    Top Tech Trends Debate 2022

    The Top Tech Trends Debate returned to its live event format on Wednesday 7 September as a headline event of the Digital Innovation Festival Victoria for 2022. 

    Dr Tien Kieu MP Dr Tien Kieu MP, representing the Victorian State Government, opened the event by thanking the Churchill Club and the event's panel members.

    A spirited debate unfolded with our dynamic line-up of panellists pitching with energy and passion. Expertly moderated by Gretchen Scott, co-founder of Tech Diversity Lab, panellists had a rapid-fire 3 minutes to pitch their respective trends that must not be obvious today, but explosive in 3-5 years time.

    World-leading digital marketing strategist Con Frantzeskos kicked off by pitching his trend of ‘Closer to the couch’- the idea that over the next few years every major industry will be available ‘from the couch’, at the touch of a button, particularly in the health-tech space where devices could track our movements, pre-empting and warning changes within our body.

    Global award-winning innovator, intrapreneur and technologist Penelope Barr spoke passionately about the ongoing fight for privacy, stating ‘surveillance isn’t safety, it’s the internet's business model’, and how as a society we are the custodians of our own privacy. Penelope implored tech industries to ethically and responsibly innovate to preserve privacy for all of society.

    Prof. David Grayden pitched on the emerging use of electroceuticals, or ‘electric medicine’ in bionic devices, used in conjunction with innovative closed-loop control to treat more diseases, and detect side-effects to allow adjustment of stimulation within the body, a trend panellists and the audience were very optimistic about given its potential to dramatically enhance health-tech.

    Breakthrough Victoria’s Executive Director of Investment Management’s Bienna Chow pitched emerging technologies being at the forefront of the geopolitical climate, with tech diplomacy shaping both the sharing and denying of advanced technology development, playing a vital role in the sharing (or denying) of foreign aid, education and emerging tech in health advancements.

    Dr Shaanan Cohney took to the stage with his trend of ‘Privately Sharing Data’. Shaanan presented a spirited pitch (props included!) on an emerging trend that he believes will explode into a ‘trillion dollar industry’ within the next 5 years, utilising PETS (Privacy Enhancing Technologies) to allow various personal data to be compiled without ever sharing that data publicly- an emerging tech trend that Shaanan identified as particularly critical to the future of healthcare that has the potential to improve outcomes and opportunities without compromising patients privacy.

    Once the panellists had pitched their ideas on ‘the next big thing in tech’, it was over to the audience who voted to decide the winner, and we could not have had a closer contest down to the final seconds of voting! In a photo-finish, it was Dr Shaanan Cohney who was crowned the winner of this year's Top Tech Trends Debate.

    At the conclusion of the debate, guests enjoyed networking and sampling some fabulous products from our drinks sponsor Starward’s range of award-winning whiskey and pre-mix cocktails. Our thanks also to Melbourne Connect for the fantastic venue space, and Food & Beverages provided for the event.

    We are very grateful for the support of our major sponsor Digital Innovation Futures and the Victorian State Government for their support of the DIF Festival, along with all our sponsors and event partners who contributed to such a successful event.

    We look forward to discovering the trends that will shape our future in 2023 and beyond!

  • 31 Aug 2021 10:53 | Peter Nolle (Administrator)

    Proteomics will transform our understanding of disease and drive personalised healthcare, according to Top Tech Trends Debate 2021 winner, Dr Andrew Webb.

    Dr Andrew Webb presenting online with Churchill Club 2021.

    Image: Dr Andrew Webb presenting online with Churchill Club 2021.

    Returning for its fourth year, over 100 participants attended the Top Tech Trends Debate 2021 held online on Thursday 26 August, 2021 to hear about the emerging trends of the future. The Churchill Club’s headline event showcased six powerhouse visions for the future of tech, with Dr Andrew Webb’s trend of Proteomics taking the crown for this year's debate.

    Proteomics is the analysis of the entire protein complement of a cell, tissue, or organism under a specific and defined set of conditions.

    Dr Webb believes that the science of proteomics will transform our understanding of disease and drive personalised healthcare.

    Dr Webb and his team of researchers believes that proteomics will change the way in which various diseases are diagnosed and treated. With $1.4 billion already invested in proteomics in the US, excluding academic initiatives, Dr Webb believes we will start to see a bigger impact in the public domain from the significant research underway.

    This years Top Tech Trends Debate lineup of dynamic panellists provided the audience with an intriguing insight into what our lives could look like in 3-5 years time. Along with Dr Webb, panellists discussed a broad spectrum of trends, sharing their visions in transformative higher education, going off-grid and becoming completely energy independent, the future of voice recognition, the transformation of SME tech, and augmented intelligence.

    Unlike any event that exists in Australia, the Top Tech Trends Debate showcases the vision of six industry-leading visionaries as they pitch their ideas for the next big thing in emerging technology. Proudly sponsored by the Victorian Government, the debate featured as a headline event for the State Government of Victoria’s Digital Innovation Festival.

    The uniqueness of the event lies in the audience deciding the winner via live polling.

    Each speaker’s trend needs to be :

    -       Not obvious today, but may well be in the future;

    -       Set to make an explosive impact in the next 3-5 years.

    Churchill Club Australia Chairman Peter Nolle says: “The Top Tech Trends Debate is a hugely popular and unique event that the Churchill Club has the pleasure of bringing to Australia. It presents us with a great opportunity to bring some of the most perceptive and visionary tech minds to our Australian audiences, and offer them a window into how the emerging trends of today will shape our future”.

  • 12 Aug 2021 17:16 | Peter Nolle (Administrator)

    In the lead up to Top Tech Trends Debate 2021, we caught up with some of our panellists from last year to reflect on their trend and hear their thoughts on whether the trend has experienced a momentum shift in the last 12 months.  Watch the video with former panellist Charlie Day to discuss his trend- Green Ammonia, and get his insights into this rapidly expanding form of renewable energy.

    #DIFvic #DIF2021 #innovation #churchillclub #tech #future#renewableenergy

  • 28 Sep 2020 15:20 | Toby Norgate (Administrator)

    The 2020 Top Tech Trends Debate brought scintillating debate to our audience of over 120 fellow curious minds. Taking part online via Zoom, this year we had panellists dial in from the UK and audience members from all over the country.

    This year’s panel gave us an intriguing window into what life could be like in 3-5 years, each pitching their vision for the next big thing in emerging tech. But ultimately, it was Anushka Wijendra’s trend on edge computing that took out the crown for this year’s top tech trend.

    The panel presented their arguments for the tech trends set to make and explosive impact in the next 3 to 5 years:

    • Edge computing
    • Precision and food health
    • Green ammonia
    • Diversifying technology
    • FinDevOps.

    With panellists:

    Anushka Wijendra: Edge computing

    Winner Anushka pointed out that it’s predicted the world will have over 50 billion connected devices in the next decade. That’s a huge jump from the approximate 4 billion we currently have. The problem is, cloud computing doesn’t have the capability to process mass amounts of data on a large scale. The longer the distance, the slower the speed and the greater the lag.

    Enter the edge. Anushka believes edge computing, meaning computing that’s done closer or nearer to the source of data, is on the cusp of something big. More computing will be done locally before data is transferred to the cloud for AI and machine learning purposes. Edge computing will allow us to engage with tech in real-time without any lag.

    As we enter into a world with autonomous cars and smart cities, slow tech solutions can cost lives. This is where the edge will come to the fore and become the dominant force in computing.

    Sarah Nolet: Precision food and health

    Taking out equal second place, Sarah Nolet believes there’s a revolution of personalisation coming that will impact our health, what we eat, our plants and the climate.

    She contends that soon we’ll be able to understand how our trillions of microorganisms will impact on our health in real-time, unlocking a whole economy of personalised health and nutrition.

    Feeling stressed and tired? Look no further than your daily dose of personalised vitamins, tailored to your gut health. Feeling ill? Your doctor will be able to prescribe specific meds and food tailored to your microbiome.

    Sarah believes this will also have a massive impact on plants and animals too. We’ll be able to tailor soil to our climate and engineer out the emissions caused by livestock for a greener planet. ‘You are what you eat’ will take on a whole new meaning.

    Charlie Day: Green ammonia and the hydrogen economy

    Our other second place runner up, Charlie Day explained there’s a new industrial chemical on the block, and that’s ammonia. Hydrogen is critical in creating cleaner energy sources, but it takes up a lot of space and needs to be cooled at 250 degrees sub zero to be stored.

    Charlie contends we need to find a way to use and store hydrogen that isn’t hydrogen itself. This is where ammonia comes in. Ammonia is a carrier of hydrogen, and when liquified it has 50 percent more hydrogen volume than hydrogen.

    Looking at the feasibility of this trend, Charlie argues that green ammonia plants will be operational by 2025. Some countries already have the infrastructure ready to distribute it.

    Charlie asserts that green ammonia won’t just revolutionise our energy system, but will revolutionise Australian politics within the next two election cycles.

    Gala Comacho: Diversifying technology

    The face of modern technology isn’t in innovation, but in the uprooting of stereotypes of the people within it. That’s what Gala Comacho advocates as the next biggest trend in emerging technology.

    As we diversify the people creating technology, this has a real impact on the technology we create. As we diversify the people creating technology, this has a real impact on the technology we produce. Gala contends that as we pump diverse and inclusive resources into the tech pipeline, the industry is making space for use of technology that wasn’t possible before.

    Using examples of domestic and sexual violence SMS chatbot service Hello Cass, and IVF imaging AI tool, Life Whisperer, Gala believes that diversification allows us to solve real-world problems. It’s the sound of getting diverse voices heard that Gala believes will take the tech world by storm in the next 3-5 years.

    Simon Wardley: FinDevOps

    Simon Wardley thinks the biggest changes in history are caused not by the exciting, but by the boring. Nuts and bolts are what kicked off industrialisation. With that in mind, Simon believes a new set of practices within money and code, is on its way. This will change our investment strategy, finances and the way we operate. Welcome to the serverless world.

    Serverless architecture means less time and money spent on managing the server, and more resources attributed to what you’re actually trying to create.

    Simon uses the example of iRobot, utilising Amazon’s serverless architecture. Rather than having to manage high volumes of traffic through the iRobot app, going serverless allows iRobot developers to focus on running a backend platform.

    He believes dev ops through the cloud is becoming redundant, and serverless is the new order.  

    Keen for more interesting, innovation and thought-provoking conversations like those from our Top Tech Trends Debate? Check out the coming events on our website and mingle with other like-minded individuals who share a passion for emerging tech.

  • 19 Dec 2019 13:41 | Anonymous

    Every day we learn more about how our data is being used. From the small-scale, like re-targeting you with an ad for the shoes still sitting in your abandoned cart, to the large-scale-very-fabric-of-our-society like Cambridge Analytica. We’re starting to understand that data is worth something, that it’s built billion-dollar companies, put people in office, and given life to ideas.

    We don’t own our data any more though. It’s been centralised and managed by third parties in return for the use of their products and services. Has it been a fair trade though? Attention as a service explores how we might regain autonomy of our data, while also empowering advertisers to target more relevant, trackable, and accountable content.

    We explored:

    • What “attention as a service” is and what is might look like
    • How this model could impact both the advertising and tech industries
    • The role of regulation and ethics

    With panelists:

    The Takeouts

    1. ‘Attention as a service’ is a model where the individual makes their data, time and attention available to an advertiser in exchange for something of monetary value.
    2. The model challenges the way advertisers and brands work by placing data and highly-targeted engagement at the heart of ad campaigns. This requires a shift in how campaigns are executed and reviewed, and at a higher level, about the skillsets required by advertising businesses.
    3. The advertising industry is still focused on frequency, rather than relevance and impact.
    4. Brands are obsessed with vanity metrics. This is starting to change as measurement techniques improve and marketing teams educate themselves about KPIs that deliver actionable insights.
    5. The ad and media industry must make a huge pivot in how it behaves, however consumers pushing against it isn’t enough. Brands buying ads and the media industry need to shift their expectations and values.
    6. The attention model potentially undermines the business models of tech giants like Google and Facebook as it creates data transparency and hands greater control to the individual, thus undermining how big tech does business.
    7. Regulation is too slow to keep pace with the changes that have been and are occurring.
    8. The recent Digital Platforms Inquiry in Australia recommended an enforceable code of practice be developed by the OAIC, in consultation with industry stakeholders, to enable proactive and targeted regulation of digital platforms’ data practices.
    9. As consumers we are only just awakening to the value of our data.
    10. You can affect change by developing your own code of ethics, challenging the algorithm and continuing to have conversations about the value of personal data.

  • 1 Jul 2019 12:46 | Deleted user

    Industry is moving fast, and technology even faster, and yet our tertiary institutions, and the qualifications they offer can’t seem to keep pace.

    Education is Australia’s third largest export and Victoria’s second largest. To remain competitive, and continue to not only grow our sector, but meet the ever-growing need for tech talent, we need to reconsider how we develop our students into industry-ready professionals.

    The panel discussion was led by Kee Wong of e-Centric Innovations. He was joined by:

     Dr Andy Giddy - Executive Director, Business Innovation, LaTrobe University

    •  Dr Andy Giddy - Executive Director, Business Innovation, LaTrobe University
    • Cameron McIntyre - Managing Director and CEO, Limited
    • Mary Lemonis – Executive GM People & Culture at REA Group
    • Paul Naphtali - Managing Partner, Rampersand Venture Capital
    • Tony Bates - Deputy Secretary, Financial Policy & Information Services, Department of Education & Training Victoria

    Together, the panel discussed:

    • The current state of the pool of tech talent
    • Solutions for building a pool of tech talent here in Australia
    • A new education model that would bring together universities and industry

    The Top Takeouts:

    1. The way that technology transforms economies, and education is key pillar of the Victorian economy. Recognition of the power of the Victorian economy however, isn’t high and one of our biggest exports is under threat, not by other universities, rather from online platform players
    2. Local graduates lack technical skills, professional and interpersonal skills and commercial skills.
    3. This talent shortage is undoing the work being done by the Victorian Government to attract international businesses.
    4. Global trend in businesses no longer requiring applicants to have university degree
    5. We have a cultural aversion to innovation.  It’s something that’s feared rather than welcomed and a narrative change is required “people that are using their brains are our greatest resource.”  
    6. Creating a talent pool means getting kids interested and involved in STEM from a young age. We currently aren’t starting early enough.  
    7. The opportunity exists to create a commercial, industry-based credential utilising Australia’s teaching IP.
    8. That credential for students needs to comprise three key components: Best online content, best on-site learning experience, best on-premise practical experience.
    9. The here and now problem is a dislocation between supply and demand.  We should be using this opportunity to create a better model that will address our local demand for tech talent, and alongside that, create an offering to future proof our education industry.
    10. The precinct of Cremorne provides a hotbed and confluence of these elements to create opportunity to prove this new education concept, develop a pilot and scale up.

  • 1 Jul 2019 12:26 | Deleted user

    Please find the following documents pertaining to the forthcoming Churchill Club Incorporated Annual General Meeting for 2019.

    The meeting is to be held on: Thursday 18th July 2019, 5:45pm arrival for a 6pm start - finish approx. 7pm

    The AGM will be held at The Cluster, Level 20, 31 Queen Street, Melbourne. Please be aware that the doors on Queen Street are not accessible after 6pm so we kindly request you arrive prior to 6pm to ensure access.

    Please RSVP to attend the AGM to bec @ by Wednesday 17th July 2019.

    Agenda for the AGM:

    1. Receive the Committee’s Report, presented by CEO

    2. Receive and consider the financial statements for the 2018/19 financial year

    3. Vote on proposed amendments to Association Rules:

    1. Add a new clause 50(5):

    “Following the initial Committee, further Committees may appoint Co-opted Committee members from time to time prior to an annual general meeting to replace any resigning Committee member”.

    2. Amend Clause 53(1): to replace the word “must” with the word “may”

    3. Add a new clause 53(5):

    “Between annual general meetings the Committee may vote amongst themselves to appoint or replace a Chairperson, vice-Chairperson, Secretary or Treasurer.”

    4. Hold Committee elections for appointment of new Committee

    Please find below the following information:

    1. Notice of Election of Committee Members, Extract from the Association Rules and Committee Nomination Form 
    2. Proxy Nomination Form
    3. Association Rules 

    The AGM includes Committee elections as outlined in the Notice of Election of Committee Members.

    Each member is eligible for one vote in the Committee election. Voting is in person at the AGM or you may wish to nominate a proxy to vote for you at the AGM by completing and submitting a Proxy Nomination Form.

    If you would like assistance in arranging a proxy or you would like to vote at the AGM but are unable to attend in person please contact the office.

    If you have any queries relating to the Annual General Meeting please do not hesitate to contact us.

  • 17 Jun 2019 15:28 | Anonymous

    After almost 4 years of taking responsibility for The Churchill Club, it’s with mixed emotion that I announce I’m moving on from the role. With a young family and new opportunities beckoning, I’ve decided it’s time to step aside and make way for a new leadership team to progress the Club further. This is not goodbye as I do intend to hold a different role within the association.

    Since taking over from Brendan Lewis in 2015, I’ve proudly achieved:

    • Formally incorporating the Club as an association and appointing the first Committee
    • Hosting 35 events on topics ranging from AR to fintech through to genome sequencing and robotics
    • Unearthing over 300 tech trends from panellists including Chief Inventor of REA Group Nigel Dalton, GM of Big Data Analytics at Telstra Mark Moloney, Executive Director of Research for Melbourne Health Professor Ingrid Winship, Chief Executive of The Clean Energy Council Kane Thornton, CEO of ITS Australia Susan Harris, and so many more
    • Hosting our first annual Top Tech Trends Debate attended by 180 guests
    • Quadrupling the membership base and creating strong partnerships with fantastic organisations who support us, including PwC, Holding Redlich, Luminary, Burninghouse, Avion Communications, and Grant Thornton
    • Receiving grant funding from the City of Melbourne business grants program to assist us in implementing a new website and membership CRM that will enable us to better serve our members.

    Currently taking expressions of interest to get involved

    The Churchill Club has come a long way, and we intend to keep the momentum going – we have our Top Tech Trends Debate (the highlight of the year) already scheduled to take place in 3 September.

    So, we are now seeking expressions of interest from members and the wider community to take a more active role in the Club.

    As I can attest, being involved in this organisation affords opportunities that are rarely offered inside a traditional career structure. Benefits include:

    • Access to influencers in the business and technology community, both here in Victoria and in Silicon Valley
    • An inside running on the latest tech trends as they emerge from an array of perspectives and personalities
    • Develop connections within government at both state and local levels
    • Forum to regularly hone your presentation and moderation skills
    • An opportunity to catapult your personal brand and profile through network connections.

    Our AGM has been tentatively scheduled for Thursday 18 July at 6pm. If you would like to put your name forward to be elected as part of the new Committee, then please contact me directly. More details on the AGM to follow shortly.

    For more information about the changes outlined, we welcome you to please reach out to either myself or one of our Committee members: Susan Keyes-Pearce, Natalie Khoo, Toby Norgate, Pete Bauld or Peter Nolle.

    My departure from the role will be staged to ensure a smooth transition as the Club moves forward. I can share with you that our event next Thursday 20 June, Proteins of the Future, will be the last event I moderate so I encourage you to come along. It will be a fascinating discussion led by the likes of psychologist Dr Matthew Ruby, Lord of the Fries co-founder Amanda Walker and insect guru, Olympia Yarger.

    We hope to see you there.


    Bec Kempster

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