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Keynote speakers

  • AVM Mel Hupfeld

    Head Force Design, Australian Departement of Defence

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    Mel Hupfeld was born in Sydney, New South Wales, on 7 March 1962, and joined the Royal Australian Air Force as an Officer Cadet in 1980. He finished his training in 1983, won the 'Flying Prize' and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree. He completed a Master of Arts degree in Defence Studies at King's College London in 1997.
    During Hupfeld's career he has flown the Dassault Mirage III and McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet flying mainly with No. 3 Squadron RAAF. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross on 27 November 2003 for his command of No. 75 Squadron RAAF during Operation Falconer, and the squadron was awarded the Meritorious Unit Citation.
    AVM Hupfeld has commanded several RAAF units during his career, including No. 75 Squadron RAAF, No. 2 Operational Conversion Unit RAAF, No. 81 Wing RAAF, and Air Combat Group RAAF. He was promoted to Air Vice Marshal and appointed as Air Commander Australia on 3 February 2012. He moved to the Capability Development Group, as Head Capability Systems, in September 2014. Air Vice-Marshal Hupfeld took up the newly created position of Head Force Design in Vice Chief of Defence Force Group on 1 April 2016.

  • Dr Tomohiko Taniguchi

    Special adviser to the cabinet of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe
    Department of Energy and Climate Change

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    Dr. Tomohiko Taniguchi has a doctorate in national security and 20 years of experience in business journalism, including a stint in London for three years. He is the former president of the Foreign Press Association in London. Dr. Taniguchi did sabbaticals at Princeton University as a Fulbright Visiting Fellow, Shanghai Institute for International Studies, and the Brookings Institution as CNAPS Fellow before joining the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs as Deputy Press Secretary. Since August 2008, Dr. Taniguchi has held professorships at Keio University and Meiji University where he has taught international political economy and media studies. On 1 February 2013, Dr. Taniguchi rejoined the government as Councillor, Cabinet Secretariat. He assumed current position both at the Keio University Graduate School of System Design and Management and at the Prime Minister’s Office effective 1 April 2014.

  • Paul Nielsen

    Director and CEO, Software Engineering Institute,
    Carnegie Mellon University

    Speaking Topic: Systems Engineering and Autonomy: Opportunities and Challenges

    Biography & Abstract

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    Paul is a retired Air Force General; spent 32 years in the US Air Force principally working as an engineer/program manager. He ended his USAF career in 2004 as the commander of the Air Force Research Laboratory; a unit that included about 6,000 men and women and a budget of $3.5 billion (US). In this position, Paul was responsible for all science and technology for the Air Force—basic research, applied research and tech demonstrations.

    Paul came to SEI, Carnegie Mellon in 2004 which concentrates on software engineering and cybersecurity. He is a fellow of IEEE and AIAA (American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics) and an elected member of the US National Academy of Engineering (NAE). He has also served on several boards and advisory panels including currently the US Defense Science Board.

  • Bill Murtagh

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

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    Bill Murtagh currently serves as the Program Coordinator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC) in Boulder, Colorado. In November 2016, he completed a 26-month assignment in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) as the Assistant Director for Space Weather, Energy and Environment Division. In his position at OSTP he oversaw the development and implementation of the National Space Weather Strategy and Action Plan.
    Bill is NOAA’s space weather lead in coordinating preparedness and response efforts with industry, emergency managers, and government officials around the world. He regularly briefs the White House, Congress, and other government leadership on vulnerabilities of critical infrastructure to space weather storms. Bill is also a key contributor in U.S. government efforts to advance international cooperation in space weather-related activities.
    He is a regular guest speaker at universities, government agencies, and national and international conferences. He has provided numerous interviews to major media outlets and is featured in several documentaries on space weather.
    Before joining NOAA, Bill was a weather forecaster in the United States Air Force. He coordinated and provided meteorological support for national security interests around the world. Bill transferred to the SWPC in 1997 as a space weather forecaster and liaison between NOAA and the U.S. Air Force. He joined NOAA in 2003 after retiring from the Air Force with 23 years of military service.