Opening address: RadComms 2016 | ACMA

Opening address: RadComms 2016


Richard Bean, Acting Chairman, ACMA
Wednesday 9 March 2016

Good morning. It’s great to be here.

It’s been 18 months since our last RadComms conference in 2014, which in our business is a long time. There have been many changes, some significant work by the ACMA to update you on, and there is much to look forward to.

I want to start by showing you a clip I expect many of you have seen, but which illustrates our theme for the conference, and which I can happily watch again and again.

It’s quite spectacular I think because it shows that innovations we have previously imagined but maybe were beginning to think might never happen, are now simply a matter of time.

[Boston Dynamics YouTube video—Atlas, The Next Generation]

I could have shown you a Google car clip, or a clip of a Rio Tinto autonomous truck in the Pilbara. What would they have had in common? Impossible without radiocommunications.

The clip illustrates a number of the elements in play today woven in with our conference theme, Enabling innovation. Of course, there is the fact of disruption, and there is the foundation for this phenomenon everyone in this room will be very familiar with, which is broadband connectivity. 

And there is mobility.

For this mix, spectrum is an essential resource necessary both to meet the challenge of disruption and to support the innovation that will ensure its continued creation.

Recent changes here at the ACMA have been less disruptive and entirely analog—my move into the role of Acting Chairman, with my fellow Member James Cameron appointed Acting Deputy Chair.

Chris Chapman retired at the conclusion of his 10-year tenure at the ACMA and I am delighted to now be leading this terrific organisation. I want to record my thanks to Chris for his 10 years of outstanding leadership.  

In fact, Chris will be with us later this morning in his capacity as President-elect of the International Institute of Communications to introduce the Secretary-General of the ITU, Mr Houlin Zhao, who will deliver this morning’s keynote address.

We are honoured to have Mr Zhao with us, along with the Minister for Communications and the Arts, Senator the Hon Mitch Fifield (who is speaking tomorrow morning) and Kim Williams (who is delivering the broadcasting keynote this afternoon).

I would also like to welcome Commissioner Jonathon Coppel from the Productivity Commission and Dr Laura Roberti from Inmarsat—who, like the Secretary-General, has travelled from Switzerland to be here today.

The ACMA in the spectrum space

Now I want to canvass some of the spectrum related work we have done since RadComms 2014 in a range of bands.

Download the full speech.

Last updated: 26 July 2017