Program 2020

The pace of global change is accelerating. Technological innovation, the proliferation of data and rapidly evolving social and economic conditions are disrupting and reshaping every aspect of society, including the business environment. People around the world have begun to question some fundamental facts about business’s role in society. On the whole, globalisation has been an incredible force for good, but the benefits of economic growth have not been shared equally across society and in many cases, this has resulted in declining trust in institutions – including business. 

Today, the world is producing unprecedented amounts of data. 90% of all the data that currently exists has been generated in the last two years alone. This proliferation of data and its consumption by consumers, governments and investors is putting companies at risk of losing control of their equity narrative. * 

Welcome to the new decade of runaway technological booms, historic watershed moments, and extraordinary abundance. 2020 and the decade ahead present new opportunities to change entire industries (both old and new), redefine tomorrow’s generation of businesses and contemporary challenges, and transform our livelihoods from the bottom up.

So, what can we expect in an age of instantaneous information and 24/7 news cycles? As business leaders, how do we navigate the challenges and continue to create value for shareholders, clients and employees? What lessons can we learn to evolve?

If you have knowledge and expertise to share, here’s your chance to participate and support AMSRO in its effort to prepare for the evolution of the data and insights industry.

 The future starts here. Take a seat and help lead the evolution. 

*Credit – EY Embankment Project for Inclusive Capitalism report


Program Highlights

Hotel InterContinental – Double Bay – 33 Cross Street, Double Bay, Sydney

1:00PM INDUSTRY SESSIONS – Moderated by Alison Earl
Client Panel – Catalyst-the changing needs of clients
New Players Panel – #trendingnow
Industry Discussion – Revolution or Evolution?

Research Got Talent – Finalists Judging Session
Researtch Got Talent competition



Day 1 – Wednesday 6 MAY

Alison Earl Moderator – Industry sessions

Author, International Speaker, Trainer, Strategist

Back by popular demand, Alison Earl is the author of Tripowerment: The why, the will, and the way of breakthrough change and works with people and companies around the globe to empower self-directed change.

Alison began her career as a market researcher, where she helped build new businesses from the ground up in Sydney, London, and New York, and has worked with people and companies in over 20 countries. Today, she still works as a brand strategist in the health and wellness category in addition to expanding her horizon to positive psychology and professional development.

Alison has been guest lecturing in behavioural economics at the Harvard School of Public Health for the last 5 years and leads a think tank, which is dedicated to solving the most complex problems in behaviour change – bringing together leading academic and commercial minds – in collaboration with Harvard. Recent attendees include the Global President of Pfizer Consumer Healthcare, the CMO of the Olympics, CFO of Comcast in addition to senior executives from Facebook and startups founders who are revolutionising education and empowerment.

Alison will moderate the afternoon sessions:

  1. Client panelWhat’s In, What’s Out?
  2. New Players PanelInformation Big Bang! Our industry is undergoing an information Big Bang. The impact of big data is often described as the three ‘V’s: volume, variety and velocity. AI will likely accelerate this trend. What does emerging technology mean for the new players in market research and how can we work together to ensure growth and sustainability?
  3. Industry discussionRevolution or Evolution? What’s next for our dynamic industry? If you have knowledge and expertise to share, here’s your chance to participate and support AMSRO in its effort to prepare for the evolution of the data and insights industry.

Day 2 – Thursday 7 MAY

Dr Catriona Wallace

Entrepreneur, Founder & Executive Director, Flamingo AI

Caroline WallaceDr Catriona Wallace is an entrepreneur in the Artificial Intelligence field, and Founder & Executive Director of the Stock Exchange-listed company Flamingo AI – a Machine-Learning company with headquarters in New York and Sydney.

She is one of the world’s most-cited experts on Artificial Intelligence, Ethics & Human Rights in technology and Women in Leadership. In recognition of her commitment to science, Catriona was inducted into the Royal Institution of Australia in 2019.

Dr Catriona Wallace has established herself as the innovative go-to expert for optimising the customer experience. As a result, she’s the most natural authority to consult with when looking at ways to introduce emerging technologies into business.

In 2014, Catriona founded artificial intelligence FinTech Flamingo AI, a company working at the cutting edge of AI technology to provide Cognitive Virtual Assistants for employees and customers. Flamingo AI is the second only female-led (CEO & Chair) business ever to list on the Australian Stock Exchange.

Dr Catriona Wallace has a long list of accolades that have seen her recognised as one of the most influential women in business & entrepreneurship. She has achieved significant awards in technology & innovation and recently won the FinTech Leader and Overall Excellence in Finance award by Women in Finance (2018). In large part, this success comes directly as a result of her ability to analyse data and identify specific problems, giving her the knowledge, she needs to develop novel solutions.

With a dedicated passion for encouraging more women to pursue careers in technology, Catriona is leading by example. She has a PhD in Organisational Behaviour and is a published author and analyst. Catriona’s links with business schools around the world allow her to share international practice and case studies, and as such, brings a robust evidence-based approach to her speaking topics.

Catriona is also a philanthropist, human rights activist and mother of five.

As one of the world’s leading experts, Dr Catriona Wallace will share the very latest news and developments regarding AI, Ethics & Human Rights in technology and Women in Leadership.

Dr Simon Longstaff AO

Director, The Ethics Centre

Simon Longstaff started his working life on Groote Eylandt in the Northern Territory of Australia. He is proud of his kinship ties to the Anindilyakwa people. After a period studying law in Sydney and teaching in Tasmania, he pursued postgraduate studies as a Member of Magdalene College, Cambridge. In 1991, Simon commenced his work as the first Executive Director of The Ethics Centre. In 2013, he was made an officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for “distinguished service to the community through the promotion of ethical standards in governance and business, to improving corporate responsibility, and to philosophy.” Simon is an Honorary Professor at the Australian National University, a Fellow of CPA Australia, the Royal Society of NSW and the Australian Risk Policy Institute. He serves on a number of Boards and Committees and as Independent Integrity Adviser to the Australian Taxation Office.

What inspires you about the work that you do?

People. I am inspired by their openness and generosity in sharing their thoughts and feelings with me. I am inspired by our common frailty in the midst of uncertainty – and the fact that this need not be overwhelming. I am inspired by the opportunity to continue learning about our brilliant, troubling, contradictory, maddeningly beautiful form of being – simultaneously the most creative and destructive creature on earth, a source of wonder and dread. If I can help people to fall ‘just the right side’ of each question, then I play a small role in making a better future.

Dr Simon Longstaff will explore the role of the ethical leader in today’s accelerating world, acknowledging that today’s leaders are confronted with a pace of change that is increasingly rapid, complex and deep in its implications.

Virginia Haussegger – 2019 ACT Australian of the Year

Director 50/50 by 2030 Foundation
Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis (IGPA), University of Canberra

Virginia Haussegger is BroadAgenda’s Chief Editor, and Director of the 50/50 by 2030 Foundation at the University of Canberra’s Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis (IGPA), where she is an Adjunct Professor. She is a passionate gender equality advocate and communication specialist. She is also an award-winning television journalist, writer and commentator, whose extensive media career spans more than 25 years.

Virginia has reported from around the globe for leading current affair programs on Channel 9, the Seven Network and the ABC. For the past 15 years, she has anchored the ABC’s flagship TV News in Canberra. She is widely published both as a former columnist with the Canberra Times, and a regular contributor to the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age. In 2014 she was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for service to the community, as an advocate for women’s rights and gender equity, and to the media. Virginia has served on a number of boards and committees including UN Women National Committee Australia; the Snowy Hydro SouthCare Trust, and the Australia Forum Steering Committee.

She currently sits on the Board of the ACT Government’s Cultural Facilities Corporation; Women in Media Canberra; and is Patron of the Canberra Rape Crisis Centre.

Virginia is also a cancer survivor.

Strange isn’t it how confronting one’s mortality makes the morning light glow brighter. The frantic monkey mind of sleeplessness settles as dawn breaks. Perhaps it’s the relief of another day. Another beginning. I made it.   Not that I expected to drift towards death overnight. I’m sick, but not that sick. It’s just that a new day brings hope, fresh promise. Including to the self. And today I have a big one. I’ve decided to cheat on my relationship. I’m going to become a first-class cheat. I should have done this years ago. Funny how a cancer diagnosis can clear away the personal cobwebs we hide behind. A worsening diagnosis adds polish to the jewel of clarity.  Now I’m ready to rip through the facade of niceness and bust out. This is not a plan to cheat on my marriage. Rather I’m going to cheat on me. My relationship with myself.”

Virginia leads us on her own journey of ‘evolution’ – from a wide-eyed cadet TV journalist 30 years ago to Director of a research centre and leader in the gender equality space.

Chris Savage

The Savage Co.

Chris Savage is one of Asia Pacific’s pre-eminent reputation management and communications industry leaders. His driving passion today is to help leaders and businesses accelerate growth …. growth in profits, courage, momentum, capability, reputation, efficiency, effectiveness, and in stature.

Chris brings a 35-year career leading the most specialised corporate affairs businesses in the region, including close to a decade as COO of the largest listed communications business in the region. His specialisation is in helping businesses, leaders and brands build stakeholder trust, relationships, perceptions, goodwill equity and credibility. He is also deeply expert in protecting reputation when ‘things go wrong’- in issues preparedness and management, and in full blown crisis management scenarios.

Following a highly successful 25 year career in public relations… where his roles included Chairman of the biggest PR group in the region, as founder of Ogilvy PR which he built into the largest PR firm in Australia’s PR industry history,  and as an entrepreneur who started (and then sold to WPP) what became one of Australia’s leading financial PR firms…. Chris was appointed Chief Operating Officer of STW Group, Australasia’s leading marketing content and communications group (now WPP AUNZ). As part of his wide-ranging responsibilities over seven years, between 2008 and 2015, Chris lead the group’s digital growth strategy, its charge into Asia (now a major profit contributor to the Group) and also was directly responsible for all STW’s non-advertising and media companies.

Chris founded The Savage Company in late 2015 and focuses on helping leaders accelerate growth. He is a shareholder and chairman of five communications agencies and is also a partner in the leading M&A advisory firm for communications industry businesses in the Asia Pacific. Chris is an accomplished keynote speaker and speaks at major conferences across the world.  His blog, Wrestling Possums, is read by more than 10,000 followers and subscribers per post.

Chris presents – How to keep yourself and your business at the edge – Relevant, effective, wanted, thriving

This session is all about YOU and YOUR business. It’s an opportunity to pause and reflect, and to spend time thinking about where you are in your career and as a leader — your objectives, goals, aspirations and intent, and about your ‘value proposition’ for the future. Also, where is your business at in terms of keeping current, sharply relevant and thriving during times of constant change.

The pace of change is accelerating, for you, your colleagues, customers and in business generally. Business models are being revolutionised, with old being replaced by new. It’s an incredibly exciting time to be in business. It’s also a very challenging time. We have to keep evolving — as businesses and individuals — to be able to deliver a meaningful and valuable contribution to growth.

And that’s the essence of this session — how to ensure that YOU are working on yourself to ensure you deliver the best of you, today and tomorrow.