November 10th 2020 - November 11th 2020 | Virtual Conference

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Keynote speakers

Kate Forbes MSP

Minister for Public Finance & Digital Economy, Scottish Government

Kate Forbes MSP, 28, is from Dingwall, although she spent part of her upbringing in Glasgow and India. Until she was elected as MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch, Kate was employed as an accountant in the banking industry. Prior to that she studied History at the Universities of Cambridge and Edinburgh.

As a backbencher, she has served on the Scottish Parliament’s Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee, the Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee, the Health and Sport Committee and the Rural Economy and Connectivity Committee. She also served as Parliamentary Liaison Officer for Finance and the Constitution.

As well as leading a campaign to ban plastic straws, Kate has participated in several cross party groups at Holyrood including Crofting, Gaelic, Human Trafficking, Palliative Care and Rural Policy. A fluent Gaelic speaker, Kate made history earlier this year by becoming the first female MSP to give a plenary speech entirely in Gaelic in the current Scottish Parliament chamber.

On 27 June 2018 she was appointed as Minister for Public Finance and Digital Economy.


Steve Roud

Chair, Socitm Scotland

Steve Roud is an Associate Director with NHS National Services Scotland (NSS) where he delivers digital solutions to enable transformation within NSS and to support similar work across the NHS in Scotland in technical areas including web services, business intelligence and integration.

Before joining NSS Steve worked for 18 years with Angus Council, supporting digital service and business transformation in a variety of roles. Steve is an experienced professional who has a degree in Information Management and a Post Graduate Diploma in Information Technology, he is currently studying towards an MSc in Public Services Leadership.

Steve is enthusiastic about developing the next generation of digital leadership through his role as a STEM ambassador and his professional role as Chair for SOCITM Scotland.


Sandra Taylor

President and Head of Digital and ICT Services, Socitm and Dudley MBC

Sandra was raised in the English Midlands, and educated at Birmingham’s University of Aston where she gained an honours degree in Computer Science & Mathematics. She has worked in IT and business transformation for more than 30 years, with 28 years of them in the public sector, putting ICT at the heart of business transformation.

As the Head of Digital and ICT Services at Dudley MBC, she is accountable for the realisation of business strategies and outcomes through the deployment and delivery of appropriate and relevant digital services. She has led in modernising and optimising ICT infrastructures, as well as delivering digitally enabled transformation programmes to implement new organisational delivery models
Sandra works with national groups and programmes to represent priorities of local public services ICT including the Local Public Sector CIO Council, and currently serves as a president for Socitm, leading on diversity, skills and leadership.

Martin Ferguson

Director of Policy and Research, Socitm 

Martin Ferguson is Policy & Research Director for Socitm, UK’s professional network for leaders engaged in innovation, technology and modernisation of public services. He leads and represents Socitm on the following policy and research themes:

  • Ethical and secure use of emerging technologies and data
  • Healthy and well communities
  • Leadership, diversity and skills
  • Modernising ICT service delivery
  • Service design and transformation.

 A graduate of the Universities of Wales, Waterloo (Canada) and Birmingham, his local government career spans planning, environment, housing, leisure and recreation, IT and policy support services. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, a member of Major Cities of Europe’s Organizing Committee, programme manager for the UK Local CIO Council and a past President of Socitm.

In Brazil and central Asia, he has led work on the British Council’s e-governance programmes. He has served as an associate lecturer for the University of Birmingham’s Public Service MBA in the UK and Hong Kong, a senior lecturer for the Open University Business School and an external examiner for Henley Business School. Currently, he sits on industry advisory boards for the Universities of Hertfordshire, Kingston and Loughborough and is a Trustee for Rennie Grove Hospice Care.

An adventurer, he has travelled to every continent, combining his interest in the world and its diverse environments, peoples and cultures with mountain trekking and cross-country skiing. Married with four children, he lives in St Albans, Hertfordshire (UK).

Rob Jackson

Business Development Manager, Yotta

Rob has over 25 years of experience helping clients make the best use of Data and technology to transform their business and organisation processes.

Sam Orton

Product Specialist, Yotta

Product specialist with a number of years’ experience in specialised asset management systems, and their application within both public and private sectors. 

Douglas Adam

Head of VMB Scotland, Virgin Media Business

Douglas joined Virgin Media Business in June this year following a year with DXC Technology in London and Dublin where he was responsible for several large client digital transformations.  Previously Douglas’ career has in the majority spanned the Telco Sector with time mostly served at T-Mobile/EE (10yrs) and Vodafone (8yrs).  During this time Douglas held various positions in Sales and Management with a specialised interest and experience in Managed Mobility.  An advocate of using technology as the enabler within our public and health services to promote better outcomes for all, Douglas also promotes technology through his involvement with the national mentoring programme, MCR Pathways.  Out-with work Douglas is a keen and experienced bagpiper and charity fund raiser for The Beatson and St Margaret’s Hospice.

Andrus Kaarelson

Director of State Information System, Information System Authority, Republic of Estonia 

Andrus Kaarelson is responsible for strategy and development of public e-services’ ecosystems and e-government platforms in Estonia. He has over 20 years of experience in services development and Info Communication Technology based services delivery. 

Previously, Mr Kaarelson has worked as Chief Technology Officer and Board Member of mobile operator Elisa Estonia, where he managed and coordinated the work of technology strategy, investment planning, services development and networks operations. In addition, he was leading the public - private partnership in Estonia as Chairman of the Supervisory Board at Estonian Broadband Development Foundation, which targets the rollout of country wide next-generation fiber optic based broadband network by 2018.

The Information System Authority is responsible for coordinating national cyber security, developing public IT solutions, including Estonia's e-government infrastructure and administering IT-related public funds. 

Eddy Van der Stock

President V-ICT-OR vzw (Vlaamse ICT Organization) and President, Linked Organisation of Local Authorities, Belgium

Eddy Van der Stock started in 2001 as CIO at the city administration, department for social security and local police and fire brigade from the city of Lokeren, where he learned to know the kernel of public administrations.

In 2008 he became president/chairman of V-ICT-OR, the Flemish Organisation for ICT responsible in Local Authorities. His concern in bringing various levels of government together puts him in a lot of different think-tank's and cooperative working groups.

His broad perspective on e-government has taken him to an international empirical as well as academic journey into the world of reference architectures where his visionary, creative and pragmatic skills build strong relationships across the several involved organisations.

Carolann Miller

Consultant and former Chief Information Officer, City of Edinburgh Council

With over 28 years of IT and Business Management experience spanning both public and private sectors.   A strong history of achievements covering ICT Digital Strategy, Programme Management, Service Delivery Management, Service and Contract Assurance, Commercial Management, Supplier Management, Delivery of IT and Transformation of Services.   I have exceptional people skills with a track record for leading, motivating, supporting and developing others to achieve key objectives and targets whilst furthering their career potential.  An ability to see challenges from every angle and work through complexities to successful resolution. Experience of interaction with Senior Executives and other various key stakeholders to inform and influence the direction of ICT Strategy. I have a strong track record in managing and working with major outsource ICT suppliers

Laura Lucas

IT Director, National Records of Scotland 

Laura joined the National Records of Scotland (NRS) six months ago as CTO and is currently acting as Interim IT Director supporting their IT modernisation programme alongside the delivery of Census 2021. After graduating with a degree in Mathematics, Laura has worked in technology for around 25 years – predominantly in financial services. Over the last 10 years she has worked in strategic IT roles in Standard Life, RBS, Sainsburys Bank, and NRS.  

Originally from Denny,  Laura has lived in Edinburgh for the last 12 years. 

Charlie Anderson

CIO, Fife Council

Since 2010, Charlie has been CIO for Fife Council, one of Scotland’s largest public sector organisations. Before joining Fife back in 2006, Charlie worked in IT for a range of large organisations covering FMCG, defence, manufacturing, financial services as well as central and local government.

Charlie has a proven track record setting and delivering ICT strategies and architectures to support organisations facing significant change. This has also included turning round the performance of failing in-house and outsourced IT providers.

Since taking position in Fife, he has led the Council’s IT service through a period of significant financial challenge at the same time as it has delivered an ambitious agenda of technology-enabled change. Charlie has also become a “well-kent” face in the public sector, leading on several national collaborations supporting the activities of the Local Authority ICT Strategy Board.

Originally hailing from Glasgow, Charlie is married with 2 children and enjoys cycling and golf – both activities which are well served in Fife.


Martyn Wallace

Chief Digital Officer, Digital Office

Martyn leads the Digital Office for Scottish Local Government which was set up in October 2016 to look at creating, delivering and accelerating innovative digital solutions to help Scottish Councils with the challenge of balancing their budgets whilst still delivering critical front-line services.

Before joining the Digital Office and indeed Public Sector, Martyn’s career has been in the tech sector working with Private & Public Sector clients to understand and innovate with new Digital technology. He has worked for companies including Capita Secure Digital Solutions, Telefonica O2UK, BlackBerry, Computacenter and Compaq plus been a board advisor to some startups

Geoff Huggins

Director, NES Digital Service

Geoff is the Director of the NES Digital Service which is part of NHS Scotland and has responsibility for developing Scotland’s National Digital Platform.  From 2014 to 2018 Geoff was Director for Health and Social Care Integration and prior to that was Head of Mental Health at the Scottish Government.  

Gemma Diamond

Senior Manager, Audit Scotland 

Gemma Diamond is a senior manager at Audit Scotland and has extensive experience of auditing large-scale digitally enabled public sector programmes and the use of digital technology across the public sector.  This has included outputs such as Principles for a Digital Future, and Enabling Digital Government.  For the last 18 months Gemma has also been leading the new social security audit team looking at how the Scottish Social Security Agency and the Scottish Government are delivering the new social security powers.

Colan Mehaffey

Chief Operating Officer, Health & Social Care, Data Driven Innovation

Colan is a delivery-focused digital leader and strategist with significant project and programme management experience across a number of sectors. He is recognised in Scotland’s ‘Tech 100’ as one of the key figures driving the nation’s digital agenda.

Colan is currently the chief operating officer for the Health and Social Care strand of the University of Edinburgh’s Data Driven Innovation programme. Prior to his current role, he led the development of a new overarching web technology strategy and governance programme for the University of Edinburgh and worked with the Scottish Government’s newlyformed Digital Transformations Service, developing strategies and transformation programmes across public sector organisations. Colan was the Head of Digital Media for the National Trust for Scotland – winning awards for the innovative use of web and social media; delivering transformational uplift in online revenue; and becoming the first Scottish partner for Google’s world-renowned Street View programme.

Murray Husband

Head of ICT and Digital Enablement, ‎East Renfrewshire Council

Murray joined East Renfrewshire Council in January 2016 as Head of ICT and Digital Enablement.

After graduating in Computing Science from University of Strathclyde in 1996, Murray worked for a number of years in the manufacturing sector with Weir Pumps in Glasgow’s Southside, and latterly Clydeunion Pumps where he achieved the global role of IT Director.

Murray then took the once in a lifetime opportunity to join the Organising Committee of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games playing an instrumental part in a global sporting event in his home city. As Head of Information Technology Services, Murray was responsible for the successful delivery of the core technology and infrastructure for the Games.

At East Renfrewshire Council, Murray is tasked with delivering digital modernisation through technology and enabling the Council to meet, and exceed, its Digital ambitions, which ultimately will make people’s lives better in East Renfrewshire

Professor James Ferryman

Leads on the EU's PROTECT Project 

Professor James Ferryman is a data scientist and Professor of Computational Vision at the University of Reading, UK. Prof. Ferryman leads the Computational Vision Group within the Department of Computer Science, School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences (SMPCS). His research interests include multimodal biometrics, automated surveillance, autonomous systems and performance evaluation. He is the author of more than 100 scientific publications. He has participated in a wide range of UK and EU funded research programmes including the EU EFFISEC project (FP7-217991) on efficient integrated security checkpoints and the EU FastPass project (FP7-312583) on development of a harmonised  modular reference system for all European automated crossing points. Prof. Ferryman coordinates the 10 partner EU PROTECT project (H2020-700259, 2016-2019) on exploration of current and future use of biometrics in border control. Prof. Ferryman is a member of the British Computer Society and has acted as the Director of both the British Machine Vision Association and the Security Information Technology Consortium. Since 2000, he has been a Co-Chair of the IEEE International Workshop on Performance Evaluation of Tracking and Surveillance.

Dr Catriona Macaulay

Chief Design Officer, Edinburgh Council

Prior to joining SG in 2014 Cat’s 30 year career ranged from developing one of the first Internet trade mark monitoring systems to media monitoring to international aid. She became an academic in 2001, combining teaching, research and industry consulting. She has published and lectured on computing, user research, and service design in India, the USA, across Europe and in Australia; supervised 5 PhD students to completion; and examined the first PhD in Service Design (in Sweden in 2013). Companies she has worked with include Intel USA, Bang and Olufsen, Goretex, Unilever UK, Microsoft USA, the BBC, Swisscom and NCR UK.