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IDC forms Gulf Technology Advisory Council

Nine-member CIO panel will advise on research, mentoring and other aspects of IDC's program

IDC forms Gulf Technology Advisory Council
The Technology Advisory Council will provide thought leadership and input to a variety of IDC programs, says Lalchandani.

IDC has announced the formation of a new CIO council for the Gulf, which will help the company to develop the agenda for IT leaders in the region.

The Technology Advisory Council, which consists of nine CIOs from the GCC countries, is intended to help IDC develop its programs for CxOs, contribute to events such as the upcoming IDC CIO Summit and to provide guidance on the changing role of the CIO.

Jyoti Lalchandani, VP and regional managing director of IDC Middle East, Africa and Turkey, commented: "The role of the council is really to be the voice of the CIO, the voice of the CxO community for the wider region. We have selected these nine CIOs to share with us their perspectives to help us better understand some of the challenges and represent the wider community.

"The Technology Advisory COuncil will also be providing input to IDC to ensure that we are talking about the right areas, we are researching the right topics, we are covering the key concerns and challenges that the CIOs are facing, in terms of selecting technology, in terms of benchmarking the various services," he added.

The nine members of the council are Ahmed Al Mulla, Dubai Aluminium Company; Dr. Saif Alketbi, Abu Dhabi Ports Company; A.T. Srinivasan, Qatar Airways; Dr. Arwa Al Aama, Jeddah Municipality; Fouad Al Ansari, Abu Dhabi Oil Refining Company; Derek Sham, Gulf International Bank (Bahrain); Mohammed Al Suhebani, Ministry of Finance (Saudi Arabia); Sulaiman Al-Kindi, Ministry of Education (Oman) and Qusai Al Shatti - Central Agency for Information Technology (Kuwait).

The Council is also expected to help develop mentoring for future IT leaders, and will also assist with reaching out to the wider community of CIOs in the region. It is planned to expand the program to te wider Middle East and Africa region later in the year.

"Councill members are also heavily involved in our CIO SUmmit, they will be chairing a number of sessions, sharing their best practices, influencing our agenda, influencing the topics to make sure they are relevant to the wider Middle East region," Lalchandani added.

Ahmed Al Mulla, council member and vice president of IT at Dubai Aluminium commented: "The growth that has been happening in this region, the changes that we have gone through, necessitates having a council to share among different industries, different experiences, what topics are important. What happens in companies is different to what happens in industries, to catch up with this, you need something - I think the council will really be an important element in setting agendas, and in helping future CIOs."

The inaugural meeting of the Technology Advisory Council will take place on the sidelines of IDC's upcoming Middle East CIO Summit 2014, hosted this year at Dubai's Jumeirah Beach Hotel on February 24-25th. Opening with a keynote address from His Excellency Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan, the UAE's Minister of Culture, Youth, Community Development, this gathering of over 300 of the region's most prominent senior IT leaders will explore the pivotal role of the CIO in the new business world of technology transformation.

The Technology Advisory Council's members will also sit on the judging panel for the annual IDC Insights IT Excellence Awards, with the winners to be announced during a lavish evening ceremony held at the Burj Al Arab on February 25th. The 2014 edition of the IDC Insights IT Excellence Awards will be hosted under the patronage of His Excellency Sultan Bin Saeed Al Mansouri, the UAE's Minister of Economy.

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