President's Visit

25 May 2011, 6.30pm - 8.00pm

Room 007, Prospect Building, University of Sunderland, Sir Tom Cowie Campus.

Free of charge for both BCS and non-Members.

Professor Jim Norton CITP CEng FIET FBCS FIoD FRSA

Event description:

BCS President 2011-12, Prof Jim Norton, will examine the extent to which the use of ICT has enabled us to build an efficient, but very tightly coupled and increasingly interdependent economy. Such efficiency savings are essential for international competitiveness, but squeezing out the slack makes our Country far more vulnerable to failures cascading across different areas of infrastructure rather than being naturally contained. Jim will examine in particular the critical inter-dependency between energy and communications. He will also examine the insidious effects on undermining resilience of ubiquitous technologies such as GPS which can represent a single point of failure across multiple systems and services. Jim will suggest where some “fire-breaks” might best be built into our infrastructure to limit the impact of failures.

Professor Jim Norton

Jim Norton is an independent director, policy adviser and public speaker. He is an external member of the Board of the UK Parliament’s Office of Science & Technology (POST) and council member of the Parliamentary IT Committee (PITCOM). Jim is a Non-Executive Director of F&C Capital & Income Investment Trust plc, where he chairs the Audit & Management Engagement Committee. He is a Board Member and Trustee of the Foundation for Information Policy Research (FIPR), as well as a member of the ‘Electronic Communications Expert Advisory Panel’ for the Irish Commission for Communications Regulation (ComReg).

Jim was a member of the Independent Climate Change E-Mails Review (ICCER) which completed its work in July 2010. He was also a Commissioner in the IPPR Commission on National Security in the 21st Century completing that role in June 2009. Jim retains a special interest in critical national infrastructure and cyber-security issues. He was also a member of the Steering Group for the Irish National Broadband Scheme for the Irish Ministry of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources, completing that role in December 2008.

Jim completed his role as Senior Policy Adviser e-Business and e-Government for the UK Institute of Directors (IoD) on 31st December 2008. He is a past non-executive director of Zetex plc (role completed 12/06/08), 3i European Technology Trust PLC (role completed 20/12/04) and of Securicor plc (retired 31/12/02) and is the former UK Country Manager for the Deutsche Telekom (DT) Group and former Executive Chairman of DT Ltd (2001-2002). He was previously Head of e-Business Policy at the Institute of Directors (1999-2001). Prior to joining IoD, Jim led the Cabinet Office team that produced the PIU report ‘’ for the UK Prime Minister in September 1999. He is a former Chief Executive of the DTI Radiocommunications Agency (the UK’s radio spectrum manager 1993-1998) and has held senior positions in Cable & Wireless (Marketing Director C&W Europe 1990-1993), Butler-Cox (Director Vendor Consulting Practice 1987-1990), and British Telecom (Senior Manager International Business Development).

Jim was a member of the Strategic Stakeholders’ Group (SSG) of the UK National High-Tech Crime Unit (NHTCU) prior to the creation of the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) in April 2006 and of the NESTA FutureLab committee, prior to FutureLab being spun out from NESTA also in April 2006.

He is a Visiting Professor of Electronic Engineering at Sheffield University and a Doctor of Engineering of that University. Jim is a Vice President and Fellow of the BCS - The Chartered Institute for IT, where he chairs the Professionalism Board. He is a Chartered Engineer, Fellow of the Institution of Engineering & Technology (IET) and member of the IET IT Policy Panel. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of the Arts, Commerce and Manufactures and of the Institute of Directors. Jim is an External Examiner for the IoD Certificate in Company Direction and is a Chartered Director.