Kim Williams: Broadcasting keynote speech, RadComms 2016 | ACMA

Kim Williams: Broadcasting keynote speech, RadComms 2016


Disruption is the name of the game (and this generation must not play it the same)

Kim Williams AM
Broadcasting keynote speech at RadComms 2016
Wednesday 9 March 2016

Today I offer thoughts on elements of digital disruption with views on common trends and challenges for policy formulation in this unsettled and unpredictable time. I am in a self-imposed, second consecutive ‘year without PowerPoint’, so there are no slides—simply a text to stimulate thinking.

We are all experiencing the huge confrontational components, which follow from the pervasive nature and velocity of contemporary change. These elements arise from thoroughly altered behaviours and expectations, which follow from the application of digital technologies. Those forceful changes require adaptive ingenuity and the need to change organisational cultures ground up if we are to achieve workable outcomes in the world generally.

People often say the world is changing. This misses the point. The world is not changing—it has changed. Forever. We have witnessed the largest power transfer in human history. I refer to the unprecedented transfer of power from producers to consumers, or as I prefer, citizens. The significance of this shift is difficult to exaggerate. Impossible to stop.

The settings change daily—for example ‘the Internet of Things’ will see growth of at least 40 billion new connected devices in the next five years and with over $5 trillion being spent on such deployments. Everything is impacted, from government to business; entertainment to defence; healthcare to agriculture; let alone telecommunications and too many other domains to detail.  

Those who enter this new environment openly, with determination to adapt, have the opportunity to prosper. Others are destined to fail.

There is a need to ensure a refashioned work and thought ecosystem. One which comprehends societal empowerment through ubiquitous connectivity, which has changed the way the world thinks and behaves. The right cultural settings are central—ones which drive innovation, drawing from its central life force, developing mindsets, processes and behaviours fit for purpose in an often bewildering time.

Meeting such potent forces which demand reconfiguration, isn’t easy. Relevant responses are essential to driving sustainable futures. The effect on politics, direction of governments and law is presently unclear.

We see turbulence as never before, reflected in wholly different commercial and social operating models and in people’s behavioural responses. The game has changed.

Download the full speech.

Last updated: 26 July 2017