by Edward Qualtrough

CIO 100 judge Christine Ashton 2019 CIO Summit video interview – Putting sustainability on the 2020 CIO 100 agenda

Dec 12, 2019

Credit: IDG

CIO 100 judging panel member Christine Ashton believes CIOs showing leadership in areas related to sustainability and green technology initiatives should be celebrated in the 2020 CIO 100 showcase.

Former CTO at Thomson Reuters, Ashton returns to the jury for the 2020 edition of the CIO 100 celebration of technology leaders and their teams, which CIOs, CTOs and IT directors are invited to be part of.

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A non-executive director at Pay.UK, Ashton was speaking to CIO UK Senior Online Editor at the 2019 CIO Summit, reflecting on themes from the day’s event as well as the initiatives and competencies that she believes the 2020 CIO 100 panel should be recognising.

“I’ve been on the CIO 100 panel for a couple of years, and I really enjoyed doing it,” Ashton said. “And one of the themes that came out toady was sustainability.

“There’s been a lot of talk about climate change and waste quite recently in the news. And I think that that’s something we need to perhaps celebrate next year.

“Years ago, I used to think about how could I locate a data centre where electricity was cheap, and where there was hydroelectric power. But we need to do more, we need to be really thinking through where are we sourcing our goods from? How often are we upgrading machines? How much waste are we actually creating just by virtue of our technology approaches, and look at how we reform our IT strategies to make them more climate friendly, more sustainability friendly, and just just less wasteful overall.”

Ashton added that the 2019 CIO Summit was a fruitful event for technology leaders who were increasingly become business and transformation leaders for their organisations.

“So when we say we had a CIO Summit, one of the things we didn’t talk about was technology,” she said. “And we didn’t talk about products or security protocols, but what we did talk about was sustainability. We talked about leadership. We talked about how you motivate teams. We talked about skills transformation.

“So actually, if you’d have been a fly on the wall at this conference, you’d have thought it was a senior business person’s business conference. And that’s kind of exactly what it should be.”

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