Taking place from 4 – 6 November 2019, a host of North America’s most senior decision-makers and business leaders from across multiple industries will descend upon the beautiful Omni La Costa Resort & Spa in Carlsbad, California for our fourth edition of the Digital Innovation Insight Summit, to discuss the most pressing challenges – and opportunities – in the fast-moving innovation sector.

Amongst other things, the summit will be discussing: How-to masterclass – Scaling innovation beyond the lab; Thought leadership – from legacy to leading-edge: becoming innovation-ready; and Understanding the Augmented Reality ecosystem and how to deliver real value to your business through AR today and for the future.

From case studies that lift the lid on operations inside best-in-class organizations, to workshops and collaborative sessions that focus on real challenges and future technology innovations, to one-to-one meetings with industry peers offering practical advice tailored to your specific needs, the summit provides you with everything you need to implement your key projects more effectively.

Our Approach

Every GDS Summit has one stated aim: to help attending executives implement their key projects more effectively. We do this by developing an in-depth understanding of those executives' project needs, the business outcomes they want to achieve, and the challenges they face in terms of hitting those goals.

Who Attends

Our summits are designed for executives looking to take their business to the next level – from market-leading brands to disruptive new entrants. As such, we’ve worked with some of the world’s best-loved and most forward-thinking businesses.
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Attendees Include

The upcoming summit will welcome executives from some of the world's biggest and most recognisable firms - as well as the most forward-thinking - as they look to address their project challenges.
Image of Jerimiah Hamon
Logo of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Jerimiah Hamon
Chief Data Officer
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Image of Chris Enslin
Logo of Visionworks
Chris Enslin
SVP & CIO
Visionworks
Image of Nathan VanRheenen
Logo of Boeing
Nathan VanRheenen
Chief Data Officer
Boeing
Image of Ashley Brinegar
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Ashley Brinegar
Chief Operating Officer - Digital Data Hub
Schneider Electric
Image of Jason Norris
Logo of Walmart
Jason Norris
Sr. Director of Engineering and Innovation
Walmart
Image of David Graham
Logo of City of Carlsbad
David Graham
Chief Innovation Officer
City of Carlsbad
Image of Sara Swart
Logo of Monster
Sara Swart
VP of Product and Go To Market Strategy
Monster
Image of Allison Gordon
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Allison Gordon
SVP, Global Branding, Engagement, and Sponsorships
Citi
Image of Levi Geinert
Logo of US Bank
Levi Geinert
SVP of Agile Technology User Experience
US Bank
Image of Tauseef Khan
Logo of Amherst Holdings
Tauseef Khan
Chief Data Officer
Amherst Holdings
Image of Michael Todasco
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Michael Todasco
Senior Director of Innovation
PayPal
Image of Bruce Schinelli
Logo of TTX
Bruce Schinelli
CIO
TTX

6 Challenges in Digital

Our summit is focused on solving your strategic challenges
  • Negotiating with the business – getting projects greenlit and past the pilot stage, exploring how to get access to sensitive, historical or interaction data
  • Cognitive computing and automation – exploring ML and AI use cases to solve real business problems
  • Road-mapping and testing – from research to execution; when is it time to progress a product and validate in a dynamic way
  • Communicating experience – setting the right expectations to drive good UX and avoiding the uncanny valley
  • Barriers to change – the headaches associated with legacy systems, the grumblings of cultural shifts, and the necessity of developing strategies to implement scaled change.
  • Bilateral innovation – looking outside your ecosystem and leveraging it to drive, implement, and scale innovation.
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Summit Schedule

Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Monday November 4, 2019
Registration
1:00pm - 6:00pm

 

Welcome Remarks and Delegate Briefing
2:30pm - 2:45pm

 

Panel Discussion
2:45pm - 3:30pm
The perspectives of 4-5 industry experts into one of the key challenges we're all facing today. This will be moderated to create a session of different perspectives, opinions and tangible takeaways of how our panelists are tackling them.
How to Innovate, Scale, and Stay Consistent.
headshot of David Graham
David Graham
Chief Innovation Officer - City of Carlsbad
headshot of Gaston Sandoval
Gaston Sandoval
CMO and Chief Product Officer - Panasonic
headshot of Ashley Brinegar
Ashley Brinegar
Chief Operating Officer - Digital Data Hub - Schneider Electric

Our opening panel will explore how even the largest companies can act lean and provide a cohesive consumer experience at scale:

  • What can you do to improve the presence of the brand – starting from the customer and working backward.
  • Version control and best practices for your organization, how should you reference it, how can you make it dynamic.
  • The necessity and challenge of building a virtuous circle of customer experience.
Interview
3:30pm - 3:50pm
A one on one interview diving into the details of how to prepare yourself for the realities of one of the industry's top challengers.
Winning Your Business's Business
headshot of Sara Swart
Sara Swart
VP of Product and Go To Market Strategy - Monster

“The challenge is not coming up with or finding new projects/technologies, even landing on what we’re going to work on isn’t hard, the hardest part is landing it in the business and making it real. Innovation is often finding the best path to get something from a prototype, minimum viable product (MVP) or proof of concept (POC) to something your organization will scale” – Director of Global Technology Innovation @ Nike

Roundtable Track 1
Session 1 - Challenges
3:50pm - 5:00pm
It’s all about identifying your challenges. What are the key questions that keep you up at night? What solutions are you looking for? Find common ground.
Negotiating With the Business
headshot of Scott Noblit
Scott Noblit
Director of UX - Lodging - Expedia Group
headshot of Anuraag Verma
Anuraag Verma
Global Head, Strategic Transformation - AlphaQ
  • Tackling the challenges of negotiating to get projects greenlit and past the pilot stage.
  • The leadership challenges associated with managing disruptors and innovators.
  • Exploring the trust required to gain access to sensitive, historical or interaction data when testing something that impacts the companies touchpoints with their customers, e.g. chatbots.
Roundtable Track 2
Session 1 - Challenges
3:50pm - 5:00pm
It’s all about identifying your challenges. What are the key questions that keep you up at night? What solutions are you looking for? Find common ground.
Cognitive Computing and Automation
headshot of Chris Enslin
Chris Enslin
SVP & CIO - Visionworks
  • Exploring and understanding artificial intelligence (AI) & machine learning (ML) use cases from a business lens, not a technological one.
  • Taking advantage of available data to get consumer insights and understanding how to get historic or seemingly unavailable data.
  • Befriending the algorithm, how to provide it with better data and improve your sets.
Roundtable Track 3
Session 1 - Challenges
3:50pm - 5:00pm
It’s all about identifying your challenges. What are the key questions that keep you up at night? What solutions are you looking for? Find common ground.
Road Mapping and Testing
headshot of Craig Schleicher
Craig Schleicher
VP Innovation - City National Bank
  • From research to execution; when is it time to progress a product and how do we validate?
  • What are the components of a healthy and sustainable product engine and who needs to have a seat at the table?
  • Sharing testing best practices for discovery analysis, competitive analysis, validation testing and assumption testing – when, how much, and with who? How do you benchmark your digital product development effectiveness?
Roundtable Track 4
Session 1 - Challenges
3:50pm - 5:00pm
It’s all about identifying your challenges. What are the key questions that keep you up at night? What solutions are you looking for? Find common ground.
Communicating Experience
  • Setting the right expectations to drive good user experience (UX).
  • Teaching people how to interact with the machine as a machine and avoid the uncanny valley.
  • Learning if the message we intended to communicate was received and how to take advantage of when it isn’t.
Roundtable Track 5
Session 1 - Challenges
3:50pm - 5:00pm
It’s all about identifying your challenges. What are the key questions that keep you up at night? What solutions are you looking for? Find common ground.
Barriers to Change
headshot of Jason Norris
Jason Norris
Sr. Director of Engineering and Innovation - Walmart
  • Change is an inevitable part of progress, headaches caused by legacy systems, the grumblings of cultural shifts, and the necessity of modernizing infrastructure are pervasive across all industries.
  • Integration headaches and developing strategies to implement scaled change.
  • Striving to understand the intersection of emerging technologies and our current workforce as business demands accelerate.
Roundtable Track 6
Session 1 - Challenges
3:50pm - 5:00pm
It’s all about identifying your challenges. What are the key questions that keep you up at night? What solutions are you looking for? Find common ground.
Bilateral Innovation
headshot of Allison Gordon
Allison Gordon
SVP, Global Branding, Engagement, and Sponsorships - Citi
  • Exploring how business models are evolving across all industries.
  • Looking at what people are doing to adapt their behavior to the actions of more nimble models.
  • Thinking outside your ecosystem and leveraging it to drive, implement, and scale innovation.
Roundtable Feedback
5:00pm - 5:30pm

 

Networking Drinks
6:00pm - 7:00pm

 

Gala Dinner
7:00pm - 10:00pm

 

Keynote
8:00pm - 8:30pm
Our Keynote speaker will be addressing the entirety of Summit attendees during our Gala Dinner. They will be going beyond the 'brand story' and sharing their experience and the real truths of tackling a challenge that is shaping the industry.
Disrupting Yourself, In and Outside Your Ecosystem
headshot of Jerimiah Hamon
Jerimiah Hamon
Chief Data Officer - Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

The closer we can get to the heart of the problem the better the solution will be. Sometimes, this means making radical changes to the internal structure and workings of your business in order to find new opportunities for revenue growth.

Tuesday November 5, 2019
Breakfast
7:00am - 7:50am

 

Welcome Remarks
7:50am - 8:00am

 

Panel Discussion
8:00am - 8:30am
The perspectives of 4-5 industry experts into one of the key challenges we're all facing today. This will be moderated to create a session of different perspectives, opinions and tangible takeaways of how our panelists are tackling them.
Innovating for the Business Leader Persona
headshot of Ave Shalom
Ave Shalom
Creative Director - Aon
headshot of Craig Schleicher
Craig Schleicher
VP Innovation - City National Bank
headshot of Sara Swart
Sara Swart
VP of Product and Go To Market Strategy - Monster

Individuals in the innovation space work across a broad range of business units. From finance to marketing, it is essential to gain the trust and confidence of each unit in order to effectively execute. This group discussion will explore how to get stakeholders to buy into your vision by thinking of business leaders as additional personas you are designing for.

This session will use this exercise to explore:

  • Communicating with leadership from different business units who are escalating their own agendas and roadmaps.
  • How much time do you spend managing up and down vs actually delivering?
  • What does innovation look like from an expense view, what targets are you working towards and what are the low hanging fruit?
  • Risk management and innovation, how our understanding of risk that stops us getting best in class tools is often a misunderstanding of risk and not actual risk.
Keynote
8:30am - 9:00am
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
A Paradigm Shift in the Customer's Journey.
headshot of Jeff Davis
Jeff Davis
Senior Director, Payment Analytics and Consumer Intelligence - Visa

Experience focused customer touchpoints have led to a paradigm shift in what it means to be a consumer, transforming occasional visitors into communities of loyal subscribers, the most successful brands are those that channel the values of experience-led design.

Case Study
9:00am - 9:20am
An industry expert will lead an interactive workshop tackling common challenges and scenarios, engaging the audience to confront the issues and discuss ideas. What will your proposed solutions be?
The Future of Our Working Selves: Our Connected, Digital Lives.

Technologies like cloud and IoT are changing the way we collaborate and, therefore, transforming innovation across the market.

  • How do you collaborate effectively across functions?
  • How to drive change and innovation by using technology to supplement your business knowledge.
  • Using data as a strategic tool to disrupt markets, create new revenue streams, and move with greater agility.
Oxford Style Debate and Live Polling
9:20am - 10:00am
One Topic. Two experts. Two opinions. You'll get the chance to vote on where you stand before the session starts. We'll then hear from our two experts, to see if they can sway your opinion when you participate in the closing vote.
The Innovation Hub; Centre of Corporate Creativity or an Isolated Echo-Chamber?
headshot of Levi Geinert
Levi Geinert
SVP of Agile Technology User Experience - US Bank
headshot of Ashley Brinegar
Ashley Brinegar
Chief Operating Officer - Digital Data Hub - Schneider Electric

This house believes that the innovation hub is a silo that isolates, rather than accelerates, innovation within the business.

Coffee & Networking Break
10:00am - 10:15am

 

Workshop
10:15am - 10:55am
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
The API Economy: an Enabler to Digital Transformation?
headshot of Whitney Bouck
Whitney Bouck
COO - HelloSign

When it comes to digital, the larger the enterprise, the more challenging the transformation. As ingrained legacy systems drag on migrations, enterprise organizations increasingly are looking to the cloud and API-centric approaches. Enabling agility, improving efficiency and futureproofing infrastructure, APIs are playing an increasingly critical role in digital transformation. In the last 6 years, the number of APIs available have increased 758 percent, and the strongest areas of growth are in business-critical and revenue-related applications. But the complexity of these technologies brings a plethora of new challenges across applications.

Whitney Bouck leads this interactive discussion on the pros and cons of the API economy as a digital transformation enabler.

Key discussion topics:

  • What key drivers favor the use of API-based technologies (vs. proprietary applications/systems)?
  • How crucial are APIs to a modern architecture/stack? How crucial to digital transformation?
  • How much does the speed of integration via API inform the Build vs. Buy decision?
  • Do APIs better enable companies to leverage best of breed technologies? What are the implications?
  • How essential are APIs to agility and choice?
Workshop
11:00am - 11:40am
An industry expert will lead an interactive workshop tackling common challenges and scenarios, engaging the audience to confront the issues and discuss ideas. What will your proposed solutions be?
Design Thinking for AI & ML
headshot of Ramy Nassar
Ramy Nassar
Director, Retail Innovation Lab - Mattel Inc.
headshot of Nelly Mensah
Nelly Mensah
Director of Experience and Innovation - Sephora

This interactive workshop gives participants a deep dive into AI, machine learning and related emerging technologies, through the lens of Design Thinking. The program is intended for individuals and teams tasked with bringing disruptive digital products & services to market. Participants will walk away with a set of practical tools, methods & frameworks focused on applying these technologies to customer and organizational problems.

Panel Discussion
11:45am - 12:30pm
The perspectives of 4-5 industry experts into one of the key challenges we're all facing today. This will be moderated to create a session of different perspectives, opinions and tangible takeaways of how our panelists are tackling them.
Escaping Pilot Purgatory
headshot of Michael Todasco
Michael Todasco
Senior Director of Innovation - PayPal
headshot of Shiv Dutt
Shiv Dutt
VP of Experience Innovation - Pampered Chef

A recent McKinsey survey found that less than 30% of pilots are starting to scale. 80% of companies were stuck in pilot mode for over a year and 28% for 2 years. Pilots that scale successfully share similar success factors:

  • They aligning support under the CDO/CEO to ensure continuous innovation.
  • They drive revenue by focusing on the business implications of their pilot, rather than just the technology.
  • They trust the data, execute relentlessly and test effectively.
  • They focus on people, change management, and leverage a wider ecosystem of technology partners.
Keynote
12:30pm - 1:00pm
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
AI Behind the Curtain: Empowering Employees
headshot of Ryan Lester
Ryan Lester
Director, Customer Engagement Technologies - Bold360 by LogMeIn

AI is enabling customer-facing employees, in and out of the contact center, to be more efficient at their jobs. Businesses are now relying on AI to assist employees with commonplace tasks so they can focus on delivering better experiences to the customer. As a result, employees are experiencing wide-ranging benefits that are making them more productive and empowered.

In this session we’ll discuss:

  1. How AI can be used to support the employees that support your customers
  2. Why employee-facing AI deployments have benefited all departments of the organization
  3. Where AI can be used to support the knowledge gaps in the customer service departments
  4. How companies are using AI to assist employees more broadly for things like IT and HR support
Lunch
1:00pm - 1:45pm

 

Roundtable
Session 2 - Discovery
1:45pm - 2:30pm
Learning and sharing with your group. What are the solutions? Are they readily available? What path are you going to take?
Drill Down Roundtables

Continue to discuss in the drill-down roundtable you joined on Day 1.

Workshop
2:35pm - 3:15pm
An industry expert will lead an interactive workshop tackling common challenges and scenarios, engaging the audience to confront the issues and discuss ideas. What will your proposed solutions be?
Driving Digital Transformation with Real-Time, Event-Driven Applications
headshot of Eddie Tung
Eddie Tung
VP - North America - VantIQ

The pressure to become a ‘real-time business’ is building, driven by rapid advances in IoT, machine learning, augmented reality, robotics, and mobility (to name a few). Your people can and must drive innovation by working collaboratively with the applications at the heart of your organization.

According to Gartner, so-called ‘event-driven applications’ ingest the real-time data streaming from your systems, devices, and people regarding the events constantly happening around your company, partners, and customers. Continuously sensing, analyzing, and acting on these event data streams enables the right actions, at the right times, in the right places—and most of these actions involve your people.

In this session, VANTIQ will describe how it is now possible to quickly create truly digitally transformative applications.

Panel Discussion
3:20pm - 4:00pm
The perspectives of 4-5 industry experts into one of the key challenges we're all facing today. This will be moderated to create a session of different perspectives, opinions and tangible takeaways of how our panelists are tackling them.
Checking Our Assumptions: Testing and Data Collection
headshot of Nathan VanRheenen
Nathan VanRheenen
Chief Data Officer - Boeing
headshot of Stuart Evans
Stuart Evans
Distinguished Service Professor - Carnegie Mellon University
headshot of Rohith Nandagiri
Rohith Nandagiri
Director of Consumer Insights and Analytics - HBO
headshot of Tauseef Khan
Tauseef Khan
Chief Data Officer - Amherst Holdings

How do you test things quickly when they require huge amounts of data? As AI becomes a more tangible solution for business use cases, the issue of data collection and testing becomes increasingly significant. This panel session will explore:

  • Shortcutting data collection pain points by focusing on what you’re trying to solve.
  • Best practices to extract, transform, load (ETL) data and how to structure your data.
  • When to look at transfer learning and pre-trained models.
  • How to validate when you have enough information to execute.
Case Study
4:05pm - 4:45pm
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
The Evolution of a Data Business
headshot of Bill Boss
Bill Boss
Senior Director Subscription Services - Accuweather
headshot of Scott Sameroff
Scott Sameroff
Director Data Products & Partnerships - AccuWeather

Learn about AccuWeather’s quest to empower and engage customers in new and compelling ways:

  • Enabling customers to unlock insights against their own data sets by making weather data ubiquitous across the multi-cloud ecosystem.
  • Allowing companies to easily pull in weather data during data collection, warehousing, analysis, visualization, and execution (ex. Push/advertising) phases.
  • How a major QSR is pulling it all together.
Privacy vs Personalization – Debating in the Uncanny Valley
4:50pm - 5:40pm
headshot of Ramy Nassar
Ramy Nassar
Director, Retail Innovation Lab - Mattel Inc.

This house believes there is no such thing as ethical data collection for AI tools and, as such, personalization will always take a back seat to privacy.

Attendee Downtime
5:40pm - 7:00pm

 

Networking Drinks
7:00pm - 7:30pm

 

Gala Dinner & Entertainment
7:30pm - 10:00pm

 

Wednesday November 6, 2019
Breakfast
7:00 am - 8:20 am

 

Welcome Remarks
8:20 am - 8:30 am

Details To Follow.

Keynote
8:30 am - 9:00 am
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
Co-Creating With the Machine
headshot of David Brin
David Brin
Author - Futurist Speaker

Hear from author and noted futurist speaker, David Brin, on the future of creativity and product development in a world increasingly propelled by AI.

Keynote
8:50 am - 9:20 am
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
Combating the Eintellung Effect to Drive Continuous Innovation

The Einstellung effect is the predisposition to solve a problem with a specific, familiar, or preferred solution. This causes innovators to create of inertia rather than disruption. How can you approach new problems in unfamiliar ways to best drive results?

Roundtable
Session 3 - Outcomes
9:20 am - 10:10 am
What does it all mean. Tracing back through two days of work, where are we? What you are bringing back to the office with you.
Drill Down Roundtables

Continue to discuss in the drill down round table you joined on Day 1

Coffee & Networking Break
10:10 am - 10:25 am

 

Case Study
10:25 am - 11:05 am
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
Showcasing the Value of Bilateral Innovation

In the past, larger companies might have done everything for themselves but now even large enterprises can’t boot strap complex projects and expect to compete with digital giants. Although collaboration has become an industry buzz word, the path to success is built on partnerships that widen your perspective, fill competencies, and pool resources. Companies that think in silos will stay in silos. This case study will showcase the value of building partnerships outside of your ecosystem that drive innovation and product development.

Workshop
11:10 am - 11:50 am
An industry expert will lead an interactive workshop tackling common challenges and scenarios, engaging the audience to confront the issues and discuss ideas. What will your proposed solutions be?
Maintaining a Competitive Edge: How Legacy Companies Are Staying in the Game and Winning.
headshot of Pallav Agrawal
Pallav Agrawal
Director Data Science - Levi Strauss & Co.

Interest in adopting AI-driven business transformation at enterprises is at an all-time high, but as per a recent IDC report, there is about a 50% failure rate in AI projects. The session will focus on best practices that help enterprises actually generate value from its AI initiatives. We will cover common skillset and mindset gaps that must be bridged, along with ideation and product development frameworks that increase the likelihood of success for AI projects.

Key Takeaways:

  • Product development framework to design delightful consumer experiences
  • The mindsets and skills required to execute on an innovation roadmap
  • How to evaluate and work with vendors that provide ‘AI-powered’ solutions
Panel Discussion
11:50 am - 1:00 pm
The perspectives of 4-5 industry experts into one of the key challenges we're all facing today. This will be moderated to create a session of different perspectives, opinions and tangible takeaways of how our panelists are tackling them.
Closing Panel & Wrap Up

What have been the most interesting discussion points over the last few days? What are the key takeaways? Are there any immediate actions to be implemented? And what further questions have emerged?

Buffet Lunch
1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

 

Summit Location

Omni La Costa Resort & Spa, Carlsbad, California

Our events take place at some of the most prestigious venues in the world. Five-star accommodation, dining and amenities make attending one of our summits both business and pleasure. Being productive has never been so much fun.

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GDS Summits host experts to help experts. Our speakers are leading executives willing to share their insight to change the industry and the world in critical ways.

To discuss how GDS Summits can help you solve your project challenges contact us on: 0117 921 4000 or email sayhello@gdsgroup.com.

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