420. There Will Be Data

[Editor’s Note: Army Mad Scientist is pleased to present our latest episode of The Convergence podcast, featuring our interview with Inderpal Bhandari, IBM’s Global Chief Data Officer, whom we caught up with at the Fed Supernova conference in Austin, Texas.  Inderpal discusses data as a strategic asset, the challenge in ensuring new technologies are intuitive to engender user trust, and how Soldiers can be empowered to transform the Army into a data-centric culture — Enjoy!]

[If the podcast dashboard is not rendering correctly for you, please click here to listen to the podcast.]

Inderpal Bhandari rejoined IBM as Global Chief Data Officer in December 2015. In this newly created role, he has leveraged his extensive experience to lead the development of IBM’s data strategy and drive IBM’s internal cognitive enterprise transformation. The work has culminated in the AI Enterprise Blueprint; a roadmap for IBM’s clients on their own journeys to AI.  Inderpal is an expert in transforming data into business value and improved customer experiences by delivering strategic, innovative capabilities that use analytic insights to enable growth and productivity.  In 2017, he was named U.S. Chief Data Officer of the Year by the CDO Club, and has been featured as an industry expert by Wall Street JournalWashington PostUS News & World Report, CNN, and FOX.  Inderpal earned his Master of Science Degree in Electrical & Computer Engineering from the University of Massachusetts and holds a PhD in Electrical & Computer Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.  Learn more about Inderpal’s insights on harnessing the power of data and accelerating Artificial Intelligence (AI) implementation at IBM’s Journey to AI and Think blogs.

In today’s podcast, we talk with Inderpal about data as a strategic asset, the challenge in ensuring new technologies are intuitive to engender user trust, and how Soldiers can be empowered to transform the Army into a data-centric culture.  The following bullet points highlight key insights from our interview:

      • Describing “data” as a field of study is like the “blind men describing an elephant,” each one will have a different, limited aspect of it, and thus, a different description. Data is now being recognized as more than just a record, as it can illuminate patterns and insights that can re-shape or invent new businesses and products. It is a strategic asset that is being referred to as the new oil, because it is “the fuel that drives the engine.” 
      • Scaling is the goal of any chief data officer of a large company with a global footprint. The first key step is to understand what the company is trying to do, or for a commercial company, how they are trying to make money, and using the data strategy to enable that goal. For a large enterprise like the Army, the question will be how data can enable the Army to accomplish its various mission sets of deploying, fighting, and winning our Nation’s wars. 
      • Culture change can occur in three ways:  Top-down as a strategy, laterally, and bottom-up/grassroots.  Bottom-up makes up the most significant portion of successful culture change in a system. Organizations need to make sure the users are prepared, and the technology interfaces are adapted to the change being sought. 
      • You can’t make every employee or Soldier into a data scientist. It’s crucial to design systems or technology in a way that brings people along in a way that allows them to intuitively use them. Trust is a significant portion of that design. The system or technology needs to be able to explain to the decision-maker in human terms why it’s making the recommendation that it is
      • In a data-centric culture, people have to be empowered. Employees and Soldiers in this type of environment can’t continually go up the ladder or chain of command to ask for permission. They must be able to act on the information that they’re given. But empowerment has to be vetted, as it can lead to chaos if not.

Stay tuned to the Mad Scientist Laboratory for our next episode of The Convergence, featuring insights about our upcoming  Back to the Future: Using History to Forecast conference on 08-09 November 2022.  To whet your appetite, check out the Save the Date announcement (below) and associated post here.

If you enjoyed today’s podcast and blog post, check out the following related content:

The Secret Sauce of America’s Army and associated podcast, with GEN Paul E. Funk II (USA-Ret.)

Setting the Army for the Future (Parts II and III)

Artificial Intelligence: An Emerging Game-changer

Outsiders Solving Wicked Problems and associated podcast, with Shubhi Mishra

Going on the Offensive in the Fight for the Future and associated podcast with former Undersecretary of the Navy (and proclaimed Mad Scientist) James F. “Hondo” Geurts and Dr. Zachary S. Davis, and Strategic Latency Unleashed!

The Future of Talent and Soldiers  and associated podcast, with MAJ Delaney Brown, CPT Jay Long, and 1LT Richard Kuzma

Achieving an AI-era Workforce by 2025:  A Modern, Scalable Approach to Retooling the United States (and its Army!) by Ted Hallum

Algorithms of Armageddon and associated podcast, with proclaimed Mad Scientist CAPT (Ret.) George Galdorisi

The Language of AI and associated podcast, with Michael Kanaan

AI Across the Enterprise and associated podcast, with Rob Albritton

Bringing AI to the Joint Force and associated podcast, with Jacqueline Tame, Alka Patel, and Dr. Jane Pinelis

Integrating Artificial Intelligence into Military Operations, by Dr. James Mancillas

Takeaways Learned about the Future of the AI Battlefield

“Own the Night” and the associated Modern War Institute podcast with proclaimed Mad Scientist Mr. Bob Work

SAVE THE DATE:  Join Army Mad Scientist and the National Museum of the United States Army (NMUSA) for the Back to the Future: Using History to Forecast conference on 08-09 November 2022, at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. This event will feature world-renowned expert speakers and panelists from industry, tech, academia, and the U.S. military and other government agencies discussing how history and experience inform and shape our future thinking and decision-making on critical issues. These historians, futurists, and thought leaders will converge backcasting with futurecasting to provide penetrating insights on Army people, materiel, readiness, and doctrine and concepts initiatives. Click here for more information about our first in-person conference since 2019!

Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *