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The Expert Advisory Panel

The Role of the Panel

To ensure that the CIO Workshop effectively responds to the needs and priorities of its attendees, an advisory panel of their peers is created each year. This group provides direction and input on such things as format, location, timing, invitees, overall theme, and paper selection.  They are never remunerated for this service.  They serve because of an interest in the subject and a willingness to support their professional community - and to learn from them in turn!

Panel Membership

The Expert Advisory Panel members are all highly experienced, with a solid understanding of the many ways businesses and information interact. They are CIOs and CKOs, or are responsible for equivalent functions in their organizations, and they all have a strong background in the application of their knowledge in the Infrastructure, Engineering and Construction sectors.


Current and Past Expert Advisory Panel Members

Jim Conlin is the Water & Wastewater Strategy Manager for Scottish Water. He is responsible for developing long term asset strategies and capital maintenance plans for the many different asset types and wide range of geographical systems needed to provide water and wastewater services in Scotland. Jim is a Chartered Civil Engineer and a Member of the Institution of Civil Engineers. He has 25 years experience in the water industry, during which time the industry in the UK has seen unprecedented levels of investment. Jim is currently leading the development in Scottish Water of processes and tools that will make up to date asset information easily available for strategic planning purposes. As well as a speaker at the event, Jim is a long term member of the Expert Advisory Panel.

Anders Thostrup is Strategy Advisor with Shell Global Solutions in The Hague. With an M.Eng. in mechanical engineering from Bristol University, Anders initially joined Shell Upstream in 1995 where he worked in projects, with EPC contractors, in operations and maintenance. In 2002 he completed an MBA at INSEAD, and returned to Shell to set up an Information Management team for the upstream projects group. His team developed an Engineering Information Specification and rolled it out to projects, including Sakhalin, Ormen Lange and Kashagan. They also developed a project portfolio reporting tool for the upstream projects portfolio. In 2006, Anders left Shell to join the family’s fast moving consumer goods company, where he managed turnaround management and set up the production forecasting and procurement functions. In 2009 he joined Stedin B.V. as Head of Asset Information Management, where he developed the information management function to support the PAS 55 and NTA 8120 asset management standard and the company’s ambitious smart-grid strategy. In 2011 he joined Accenture where he was responsible for the Capital Projects and Asset Management capability in the Benelux region, and then in 2012 returned back to Shell where he now manages Shells IM/IT investments in support of its capital projects portfolio.

Andrew Cowell is the Engineering Director for the UK Construction arm of MWH. Prior to joining the Construction team at MWH Andrew spent 20 years in Consultancy with MWH specialising in Design Build. Andrew was EMEAI Director of Knowledge Management from 2001 to 2005. Andrew is a Chartered Civil Engineer, also a Member of the Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management and has over 30 years experience in water and environmental engineering. Andrew has been part of global and local teams at MWH developing and implementing knowledge management and design information management practices at a company, programme and project level. The KM implementation at MWH has featured in Business School Case Studies and won a number of awards. From the outset Andrew and the KM team at MWH have linked the people, IT and information management issues into the strategy. Andrew is a conference speaker on this subject, as well as a long term member of the Expert Advisory Panel.

Andrew Marks is Chief Information Officer, Tullow  Oil, PLC. Andrew graduated as a geologist and pursued this within Oil & Gas for a number of years before stepping from 'IT customer' to 'IT supplier' as IT Programme Manager at LASMO plc. Subsequently, Andrew joined Accenture where he has both developed IT Strategy and led the implementation of large-scale Asset Management systems for Water, Gas and Electricity utility clients. He later moved to Parsons Brinckerhoff Limited where he was accountable for IT delivery across PB's EAME region. Andrew joined Tullow Oil as CIO in April 2007. With recent Exploration successes in Africa leading to major production facilities projects, Andrew has been working hard to influence decision-making across the full project and operations supply chain. As well as a speaker at the event, Andrew is a long term member of the Expert Advisory Panel.

Branka Fister is Head of Civil, Arrangement and Piping Engineering at Alstom and was recently Head of Engineering at Christ UPW AG. She began her career in transportation and moved from there to the oil and gas industry. She has strong knowledge of process engineering and the IT elements of major process production operations, and adds a welcome element of industrial know-how to the Panel.

John Bailey, Chief Information Officer EMEA, Bechtel is responsible for defining directions and business process re-engineering at that firm to suit today's challenges. With more than 17 years of experience spanning several major industrial sectors and an outstanding capability in AEC business operations, John adds significant domain and business expertise to the Expert Adivsory Panel, which he has supported as a long term member.

Adrian Goulding is an independent consultant providing expertise and insights into Information Management especially in the Oil & Gas sector. He built his knowledge and expertise during a 30 year career with Chevron where he worked in the IT/IM space around the world. This included 7 years in the US and 2 years in Africa plus spells in Asia and Kazakhstan. As a recognised SME he was responsible for Information Management within Chevron’s Major Capital Projects executing in the region - from Europe through to Australasia. This was part of Chevron’s Center of Excellence for MCP IM/IT based in Houston where Adrian’s leadership role brought standards and best practices to use of information during the design, construction phase and then into Operations. Originally qualifying as a Mechanical Engineer he moved into the IT world during in the late seventies.

Neil Farmer is the IT Director for Crossrail Limited, probably the largest infrastructure construction project in Europe. Neil joined Crossrail in August 2009 and is responsible for establishing the IT capabilities required to support different stages in the evolution and delivery of the Crossrail railway through to handover to the eventual rail operator.  Neil has more than 30 years experience as an IT professional and prior to joining Crossrail he has held senior IT leadership and consultancy roles with leading international organisations based in the UK and overseas.

Matthey Kyte is CIO for ARCADIS Europe, an international company providing consultancy, design, engineering and management services in infrastructure, water, environment and buildings. He is focusing on the Global IT Strategic Program, global IT related initiatives and Knowledge Management for ARCADIS worldwide.

Before joining ARCADIS NV in 2008, Matthew was IT Manager for AYH plc from 1998 onwards. A UK based Quantity Surveyor and Project Management organisation AYH was based in London with regional offices across the UK. AYH plc was acquired by ARCADIS in 2005.  Prior to joining AYH plc Matthew was Corporate IT Manager for Northcroft another UK based Quantity Surveyor between 1995 and 1998. It was at Northcroft that Matthew started his career as a Quantity Surveyor in the late 1980s with split responsibility for IT and project work before moving solely into IT.

Henk van Oostveen is Manager Technology and Architecture at ProRail, the rail network manager of the Netherlands. Since 2007 ProRail has run an ambitious program to improve the quality of the asset information. Next to the quality of the information, focus is set on the use of this information in the asset management process. Henk has more than 20 years of experience in de rail industry. Prior to ProRail he worked in the field of rolling stock maintenance at NedTrain as Manager Maintenance Strategy.  Henk holds an M.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering from the Technical University, Delft.

Tim Walton recently was Chief Information Officer (CIO) for CLM the Olympic Delivery Authority delivery partner for London 2012. His career has included executive and non-executive roles and has spanned operational, commercial, financial, e-business and IT assignments in civil and military aerospace, construction and design engineering. Tim is a Fellow of the British Computer Society and a Chartered Engineer. He has been a member of various steering boards for industry initiatives and is also a guest speaker at Warwick and Oxford MBA Courses.

Charles Rowney, who before establishing his own practice was a CKO in a major AEC firm and remains active in knowledge and information management enterprise solutions.  He is presently an independent consultant (ACR, LLC) who practices in the AEC space, providing services in the area of solution integration, bridging IT capabilities and service community requirements. He has been a member of or particiapnt in the CIO Workshop since its inception, and was a past participant and organizer in the US based CIO Forum.

Anne-Marie Walters, Global Marketing Director, Bentley Plant, has provided a strong and welcome link between Bentley and the CIO Workshop since its inception.  Working in close coordination with the production team for the Workshop, she also serves as conduit between the many and varied Bentley players who support the event and the members of the Expert Advisory Panel who drive the program.  A chartered chemical engineer, and a founding member of the Process Industries STEP Consortium (PISTEP) committee, she has also served on the boards of CIMsteel and the United Kingdom's chapter of the International Alliance for Interoperability (IAI), as well as the board of the Engineering and Constructing Contractors Association (ECCA).  She is frequently called on by analysts and the press to communicate regarding digital plant technologies and Bentley's strategies in the process industries.

Michel Luypaert, now an independent practitioner, was Chief Information Officer at, Besix and prior to that was a CIO in the banking industry. His knowledge of the broader implications of financial transactions supplements his understanding of AEC industry technical operations, and adds to the capabilities of the Panel.

Mr.Avinash Sankholkar is now practicing independantly as a consultant in the IT/AEC arena.  Prior to this, he was the CIO & Head of System Integration business at L&T Infotech, the IT arm of Asian E&C major Larsen & Toubro.  He has a combination of real life E&C project management experience and the implementation and running of business enablement systems. His team has won awards in Knowledge Management, Intelligent Enterprise & smart  deployment of SAP in the E&C business.

David Adam is employed by BP as Digital Solutions Manager for Projects and Engineering in their Exploration and Production segment, and is responsible for the Digital solutions in support of Major Capital Projects and Engineering.  He joined BP from one of the major contractor organisations (KBR) where he was the Information Management and IT Director for the offshore product line.  David has been a strong advocate for information standards supporting the information flow through major capital projects into operations.  Activities included being a founder member on the board of POSC/Caesar, chairman of the Epistle Implementation Group, and co-chairman of the ISO technical committee that facilitated the POSC/Caesar deliverables becoming an ISO standard.

Hans van Otterloo is currently in independent practice in his home country of Holland, focused on emerging technologies.  He was during his tenure on the Panel Chief Information Officer  of ARCADIS B.V. since 2001. Before turning to IT he was responsible for ARCADIS’ operations in Asia and the Middle East, and prior to that spent several years on assignments in both Africa and Asia. Hans studied economics at the University of  California and Cambridge University. As CIO of ARCADIS Hans was responsible for merging 7 IT units into one central IT department. A strong drive for both customer satisfaction and cost control led Gartner to qualify the department’s performance in 2004 as ‘best of class’. Hans is married with two daughters.

Scott Farquhar is CIO at Bovis Lend Lease. He has been a Workshop attendee in the past, and has elected to join the Panel as a full member this year. His insights into IT challenges in the context of a major project management and construction company such as Bovis provides a significant element of large scale project planning and information management experience to the Panel.

Björn Paulsson during his participation on the Expert Advisory Panel was Head of Track Division for Banverket, the Swedish rail administration and has been with Banverket since they started 1988. Björn is responsible for IT for Technical systems for the non production units (Banverket Consulting and Banverket production) and for systems used both by the non production units and the production units. He is responsible for defining the IT strategy for the technical department at the HQ.

Alan Hodgkinson graduated with degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and has over 25 years experience in IT. He is a specialist in the automation of business processes, with a specific focus in document workflow for construction projects. Prior to founding SoftXS, Mr. Hodgkinson worked for a number of high-tech startup companies and participated in numerous projects, including the automation of the Swiss Stock Exchange.

Maurice Tayeh remains a source of advice and ideas for the Workshop, and during his time on the Panel was Technip's group chief information officer. His primary responsibilities include IT strategic directions and business process re-engineering to suit today's challenges. With more than 19 years of experience spanning several major industries, Maurice is a member of the Process Power Client Community (P2C2) International Advisory Council.

Andreas Rebetzky was Chief Information Officer with M+W Zander when he served on the EAP. From 2000 until May 2005, Andreas was managing director of the Teraport GmbH in Stuttgart, a subsidiary of M+W Zander Holding AG. Rebetzky studied at the university of Tubingen and at the ETH in Zurich, where he graduated in 1987 with a diploma in physics. He subsequently received his doctorat in extraterrestrial physics at Garching near Munich. After graduating in 1989, Rebetzky was founder and chief executive of the company Science + computing GmbH Tubingen, which was a consultancy for technical scientific research and development environments. His field of responsibility ranged from the development of software to sales and marketing. Key projects included the assembly, or the rearrangement, of IT services in the development branches of DaimlerChrysler, BMW and Infineon as well as to develop simulation software.

Sami Abdulgani General Manager of Saudi Consulting Services, in Saudi Arabia at the time he participated in the Panel. He received a B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering in 1981 from Michigan State University and an M.Sc. in Energy Engineering (Power) in 1983 from Western Michigan State University, USA. He was elected President of the Project Management Institute – Arabian Gulf Chapter in the year 2000 and served two-terms as President and still serving as Trustee. He is the Chairman of Saudization Committee and Member of Strategic Projects in the Chamber of Commerce. Currently he is also Executive Vice President, managing and directing an engineering workforce of more than 1,500 professional staff.