'At school I was good at History, Literature, Physics and Mathematics, not an obvious combination but a really interesting one. Engineering was interesting to me because this was where you could take the principles you had learned in maths and physics, and actually use them to build things - this was such an exciting thought, that you could take everything off the page and go build something that did something amazing. I was fascinated with communications topics, micorwaves and optics, so I studied those topics and ended up working in Sonar Sytems initially. This was so exciting, building these huge systems for ´seeing´ under water, it gave me a real appreciation of the importance of thinking about the safety and security of individuals when dealing with technology, and also how essential it is to think, up front, about how your technology is going to affect it´s environment, and the people around it. This led me to Systems Engineering and thinking about Technology in Context, and this in turn led me away from the big systems that are more stand alone, towards those technologies that are embedded in our every day lives, the software, the applications, the infrastructure that is quietly ticking away under everything we do in the modern world.
Think about your day, you wake up to an alarm clock, is that alarm clock digital? Or from your phone? Where is that accuracy of time coming from? Howing is it getting to you in your location? What happens if that time is wrong? You´ve only just got out of bed and you are already knee deep in technology! For me being the heart of technology is being in the beating heart of our world right now.
This was brought into sharp focus given the global pandemic, all of us are now working remotely, and even going to school remotely, technology is even closer to the centre of our lives, and makes it increasingly clear that if you are working in technology you are working on the future of society. Which makes it essential that if the whole of society is affected by the decisions we take in designing technology, then the whole of society needs to be represented in those roles and organizations that are taking those decisions. And we need to think about technology that is ´good´ where we pay attention to the impact of that technology, the ethics and the environment in which we operate.'
Vicky studied Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Liverpool and more recently obtained an MSc in Systems Thinking in Practice from the Open University in the UK. In 2020 she became the Chief Technology Officer for IBM BeNeLux, in this role she looks across the breadth of technology available and the ambitions that organizations have, and works to find the most effective ways to have technology support the evolution of those ambitions. Her current focus is in the area of Hybrid Cloud, how to get oversight, governance and control of federated technology landscapes, always with an eye on the impact of technology on individuals, society and sustainability.