Computerworld Top 10 Most Influential - #2 National Broadband Network (NBN)

Yesterday, Communications Minister Senator Stephen Conroy was revealed as the third place getter in the Computerworld Top 10 Most Influential for 2009.

Today we reveal #2 — the National Broadband Network (NBN).

Last week Computerworld began counting down to the winner with one article each day from 10th place to number one. The Computerworld Top 10 Most Influential for 2009 is highlighting the people, products, organisations, trends or events that have had the greatest influence on the ICT industry and community.

  • #10 — CSIRO's wireless patent win
  • #9 — Virtualisation
  • #8 — Netbooks
  • #7 — Gershon
  • #6 — Google
  • #5 — Twitter
  • #4 — Financial Crisis
  • #3 — Senator Stephen Conroy
  • When we reach #1 on Friday, it will be over to you for the readers' choice award. If you don't agree with the panel of 12 you can still have your say on the most influential person, product, organisation, trend or event for 2009.

    We’ll publish the results on the website and in the February/March issue of Computerworld magazine.

    But now it is onto the second place getter — the National Broadband Network (NBN).

    #2 National Broadband Network (NBN)

    It's fitting that in a week where two major broadband and telecommunications conferences attended by a who's who of the Australian ICT industry and several notable international guests are held that we announce the National Broadband Network (NBN) has snagged the 2nd spot in Computerworld's Top 10 Most Influential for 2009.

    Almost unanimously the panel of 12 judges indicated the NBN's influence on the Australian ICT industry and broader community has been profound this year.

    From the initial drama of the tender process for a fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) network that saw Telstra fail to put in a full bid, the Government accept it anyway, a panel of experts pan all of the bids, and the Government then decide to abandon the process while announcing it would spend up to $43 billion on a fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network and set up a new government majority-owned entity to construct the whole thing the impact has been massive.

    While the panel debated whether the NBN's influence was greater than our #3 place getter, senator Stephen Conroy, we came to the conclusion it was far bigger than any one individual or organisation.

    After all the NBN is arguably the biggest infrastructure project the nation has ever attempted to make a reality and the $43 billion NBN announcement came at a time when the economy was teetering on recession, providing a much-needed confidence boost and the promise of tens of thousands of new jobs.

    Since then, the NBN and its potential benefits/challenges have dominated the news media and forced almost every industry to consider how they will be affected. From healthcare, education, smart infrastructure, and aged care, to e-commerce, construction, electricity providers, telecommunications, and the resources sector to name a few, strategies and commentary around the NBN have been formulated, debated and promoted.

    In short, there are few other issues across the entire economy that have had this kind of far-reaching impact this year.

    The NBN has also forced the issue of regulatory change to several fields including broadcasting and telecommunications – notably involving the potential forced separation of Telstra, one of the country's largest corporations.

    Meanwhile the company set up to rollout the FTTH network, NBN Co, has been actively recruiting staff and undertaking some of the most significant business negotiations with asset owners (including Telstra) in the country's recent history. And it is already digging trenches to the lay the necessary optical fibre through its subsidiary NBN Tasmania.

    The influence however, is not limited to Australian shores. In several international forums and government talk shops, our NBN has drawn considerable attention from countries as diverse as the US and Brasil to Egypt and Serbia.

    The fact the NBN is already touching so many industries and issues vital to the public in both a tangible and conceptual way is why the Computerworld Top 10 Most Influential for 2009 panel awarded it second place.

    More stories on National Broadband Network (NBN)

    Help us track the NBN

    In pictures: Regional backbone blackspots program

    iiNet's Malone: Government must subsidise NBN prices

    SAP opens door to prospective research partners for NBN

    Organisations should prepare for the NBN now: Gartner

    OECD subtly throwing its weight behind the NBN cost-benefit analysis calls

    Telstra to push for cash not equity swap with NBN Co

    New locations revealed in Tasmanian NBN rollout

    Australian spaces may be ranked by NBN places

    Quigley: Too early to confirm equal NBN pricing

    NBN's future can be seen in AARNet present

    Tassie towns first on NBN

    NBN Co gathering capability statements for partner selection

    Hybrid SmartStreet Project to research TV on the NBN

    Page Break

    How we chose the Top 10 Most Influential 2009

    The Top 10 Most Influential 2009 was chosen by a panel of 12 members comprising the Computerworld editorial team (4) and 8 industry experts (see below for details). Each member of the panel was given a list of suggested possible entries for inclusion in the final list. They were then encouraged to nominate 10 candidates and to add others if they thought them worthy of consideration.

    To ensure the broadest possible range of products, people, trends, organisations and events were given a chance at being considered, no restrictions were imposed. In short, anything considered by a panel member to have been one of the biggest influences on the ICT industry and community throughout 2009 was acceptable.

    The nominations (or votes) were then tallied by the Computerworld Editorial team and a short-listed created. The entry with the most votes was then selected as the Most Influential for 2009. Those entries with the same amount of votes then went through a count-back with a final decision made by the panel.

    The Panel:

    Computerworld Editorial Team:

    Trevor Clarke (Editor) – See more stories by Trevor

    Georgina Swan (Deputy Editor) – See more stories by Georgina

    Tim Lohman (Journalist) – See more stories by Tim

    Kathryn Edwards (Journalist) – See more stories by Kathryn

    Frost Sullivan ICT practice head, Andrew Milroy Andrew Milroy heads up Frost Sullivan’s ICT practice in ANZ having joined the firm in 2006. Andrew has spent more than15 years in the ICT industry. He has held senior management roles at IDC and co-founded, NelsonHall, a successful IT services advisory firm in the United States. Andrew’s recent roles have been focused upon the development of research and consulting activities in Europe, Australia and the Asia Pacific region. His research focus has been ICT services, in particular outsourcing. He has also led research and consulting projects in cloud computing and sustainable IT. Visit the Frost amp; Sullivan website

    IDC Associate Vice President Research, Australia, Tim Dillon Tim Dillon manages IDC’s Australian research operations. As part of his role Tim focuses on working with Senior IT executives from Australia’s leading ITT organisations across consulting projects, research and analysis areas such as; Telecoms, Software and Services. Tim has more than 17 years of professional experience in research. Having lived and worked both in Europe and Asia Pacific, Tim has a global perspective that provides a broader view of technology trends as it impacts Australia. Visit the IDC website

    Intermedium Head of Consulting, Kevin Noonan Kevin specialises in the Government IT, as an industry analyst, consultant and commentator. For the last four years, he has provided consulting advice to more than half of the Top 100 ICT companies, and many government agencies. Kevin has more than thirty years experience in the government IT sector. This includes ten years as a government senior executive and Chief Information Officer, and a further eighteen years as a government manager and project director. During this time he held positions responsible for almost every aspect of IT, ranging from technical infrastructure and major procurement, through to policy and large scale business change Visit Intermedium's website

    Web Directions conference series co-founder and author, John Allsopp John Allsopp is a co-founder of the Web Directions conference series, and author of one of the earliest books on Microformats. As a software developer, long standing web development speaker, writer, evangelist and self proclaimed expert, he’s spent the last 15 years working with and developing for the web. As the head developer of the leading cross platform CSS development tool Style Master, and developer and publisher of renowned training courses and learning resources on CSS and standards based development, and author of the highly regarded “Dao of Web Design” he has been widely recognized as a leader in these fields. Visit the Web Directions website.

    IBRS advisor, Dr Kevin McIsaac Dr Kevin McIsaac is the IBRS advisor for virtualisation, desktop deployment, mobile devices networks, servers storage and data centre infrastructure. He has 25 years of IT experience and is a recognised expert in infrastructure, operations and vendor management. Dr McIsaac has 10 years experience as an IT Analyst researching, distilling and disseminating best practices in IT and regularly work with the CIOs and the IT management teams of leading Asia-Pacific organisations. Prior to IBRS, Dr McIsaac was Research Director Asia-Pacific Group for META Group and has held leadership positions at Computer Associates and Functional Software. Visit the IBRS website.

    Social media commentator and strategist, Laurel Papworth Laurel is one of Australia’s top social media strategists, a renowned keynote speaker and respected thought leader on the business of being social. She is in the Power150 Media and Marketing blogs globally (Advertising Age), # 3 Media Marketing blogger in Australian (BT Magazine), and regularly interviewed about social networks in international press and on Australian TV shows and Radio National, Vogue Australia, The Australian and the Fin Review, SMH, Telegraph, and various magazines Visit Laurel's website.

    Layer10 Founder, Paul Brooks

    Paul Brooks is the founder of Layer10, a consultancy and advisory practice in the telecommunications industry specialising in broadband access, optical network design and service strategy.

    Australian Information Industry Association CEO, Ian Birks Ian Birks was appointed AIIA Chief Executive Officer in July 2008. Prior to this he was a national board member of the AIIA, serving since 2004. As a board member Ian has been actively involved in industry workforce and skills issues, working as an advisor to the association’s initiatives in this area. Visit the AIIA website

    Copyright © 2009 IDG Communications, Inc.

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