Advisory Board

Neil McRae

Managing Director & Chief Architect, BT

Neil, named after the first man to walk upon the moon, has over twenty years working in the technology arena, He joined BT in 2011 as Chief Network Architect driving the network strategy for BT across all lines of business. Setting a strategy of simplification Neil was able to realise significant capital savings and improved customer experience on BT’s core broadband products and was also instrumental in driving mobile and wireless as a critical capability which lead to BT acquiring 4G spectrum and building a 4G network. This lead to the acquisition of EE where Neil lead the technology workstream .

Neil is now BT Chief Architect leading Architecture and Technology direction across all of BT, most recently leading BT’s 5G programme. Neil is a BT Distinguished Engineer.

Kirsty Bright

Head of Technology Strategy, Vodafone Group

Kirsty is Head of Technology Strategy for Vodafone Group leading the development and execution of the Technology strategy across Vodafone globally. She has over 15 years’ experience working in the telecommunications industry with particular focus in her previous role on AI, robotics and automation, where she was responsible for delivery of Vodafone’s first AI/ digital employee.
Kirsty has a diverse background combining two music degrees, an MBA and experience in operations, delivery and strategy roles. She uses her combination of skills to drive creative thinking, innovation and thought leadership in technology. This is particularly important in her current role as she leads the development of Vodafone’s Technology strategy for 2025 focusing on how to be disruptive whilst being realistic. 

Axel Clauberg

VP Strategic Portfolio Management & CTO, TC Services,
T-Systems International GmbH Deutsche Telekom,
Chairman, TIP (Telecom Infra Project)

Axel Clauberg joined Deutsche Telekom in September 2011. Within the Group Headquarter Strategy & Technology Innovation team, Axel was responsible for Deutsche Telekom’s IP End to End and Infrastructure Cloud Architecture. Since the beginning of 2019, Axel is the CTO for the Telecommunication Services unit at T-Systems and is responsible for the strategic portfolio management.

He has more than 35 years of experience in the IT and Telecommunications industry and is known as an innovation leader in the Internet and Cloudification space. Before joining DT, he had various international leadership roles at Cisco Systems.

Axel is also serving as the Chairman of the Board for the Telecom Infrastructure Project (TIP).

Kim Krogh Andersen

SVP, Head of Global Technology Strategy & 5G Strategic Program, Telenor

Kim Krogh Andersen is currently Senior Vice President, heading the Global Technology Division in Telenor Group. Kim has more than 20 years leadership experience and extensive experience in technology management. Before joining Telenor, he was an officer in the danish army where he held several leadership positions. Kim started in Telenor Denmark 10 years ago, leading the customer service division  After his tenure as of head of operations he become Chief Network Officer in Telenor Denmark. He was later appointed as the head of transformation for Telenor Group in Asia covering network and operations transformation for the Telenor business units in the asia region.

Christian Maitre

Director Global Operations Transformation, Orange Group

Christian is Director of Global Operations Transformation for Orange group, working on new digital paradigms for network, service platform and IT contexts. Prior to this he was Orange Group Deputy CIO, in charge of IT modernization for the whole group. In parallel, he is also an expert in Smart Cities leading many awarded winning catalyst projects to standardize the city digital journey. Christian started working in the 90’s for a software company (Steria) to develop standard of interconnectivity between banks and large accounts. He then moved to London to build the international projects for Young & Rubicam, a well-known advertising company then moved to New York to the WWHQ, to develop the first corporate Intranet. He then moved back to France to take the CIO position of Y&R group in France before becoming CIO for IBM software group/Lotus France developing lots of new concepts with the growth of Internet. In 2000, Christian joined a small French internet company ((one of the main multimedia service providers in France) as deputy general manager in charge of Operations, reshaping all operations and supporting new innovation for business. The company was acquired by Orange in 2006, and he became VP for operations for Orange Business Services.

Kim Larsen

CTIO, T-Mobile Netherlands

Dr. Kim Larsen has more than 16 years of experience in the telecommunication industry, with national, as well as international senior management roles. He was the CTIO in Magyar Telekom, Hungary’s market leading telco operator. Also previously he worked for Deutsche Telekom as Senior Vice President of Technology Economics & Transformation reporting directly to the Deutsche Telekom’s Group CTO. He holds a Ph.D. degree in Physics and a master degree in Physics & Mathematics. Kim is currently CTIO at T-Mobile Netherlands.

Kim is passionate about value-based technology innovations and in particular the strategic and economic impact of new technologies such as 5G and AI. He publishes and discusses his views as ‘Dr. Kim’ on his techno-economical strategy blog, his AI strategy & policy blog www.aistrategyblog.comand on Twitter @KimKLarsen.

Among many things, Kim has been developing a blue print for Deutsche Telekom’s Network-centric big data architecture supporting all network needs including the diverse use cases & requirements in a modern telecommunications network. He is driving various applied machine learning initiatives, aggressive network automation and how to get more data science competences into the telecom industry. Lately, he started a debate on relevance of 5G for the mass market, the rightful expectations to its potential and last but not least the economic impact on the telecom industry.

Åsa Nielsen

Director, Head of Network Service Management & Automation, Telia Company

Åsa Nielsen has more than 20 years of experience in the telecommunication industry from various positions on both network equipment vendor and operator sides in the global arena. Her career includes key positions in business/sales as well as technical development, standardization and digitalization with a stronghold in combining business and technology.

Currently, she is director at Telia Company, leading the company’s journey in automating the network through establishing natively built-in orchestration and automation. Previous positions at Ericsson have included head of business unit commercial management. During that period, she was in charge of the re-shape and the significant increase in SW sales. Amongst many other things, she started her career developing C++ in the ‘90s. Later she was one of the first joining the development of GPRS at Ericsson, contributing to the mobile data business transformation for many years in leading positions.

Åsa holds a MSc in Electrical Engineering and Industrial Economics at Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden.

Jim Slevinsky

Director of Technology Innovation, TELUS

Jim Slevinsky is the Director of Technology Innovation at TELUS, leading a team of senior engineers focused on identifying and evaluating disruptive service and technology opportunities. He has extensive integrated experience in telecom technology development, analysis and management. He holds a BSc and MSc in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University Alberta.

Matteo Gatta

Director Technology Strategy & Innovation, Proximus

Matteo holds the position of Director Technology Strategy & Innovation at Proximus (, previously Belgacom). Matteo leads largest investment files in networks, platforms/IT and products/services incubation. His current responsibilities include technology strategy, spectrum, tecno-economics, incubation of new digital experiences, partnerships, corporate venturing and innovation incentives linked to R&D.

His current focus is on digital technologies (, advanced data analytics applied to network investments, AI/machine learning applied to Telco, 5G investment plan and use cases development, Software defined access (bonding), Edge computing, SD-Wan and Telco Cloud.

Prior to his current role, Matteo covered several executive positions within Corporate Strategy, driving M&A files, partnerships and moves in growth markets. Matteo led Scarlet ( through post acquisition transition period driving commercial and operational synergies. Previously Matteo led marketing and product management at BICS (, seeding and growing carrier mobile data business. Matteo started his career with hands on experience in software development, product development and program management.

Matteo is Board Member of BICS, Tessares and is founding director of LoRa Alliance (IOT). In the past Matteo held several Board positions in SME or startups, including Scarlet (AltNet Telco) and Tunz (Mobile Payment, Ingenico).

Matteo has University Degree (Laurea) in Electronic Engineering with full marks from University of Pavia (Italy), a Master in Information Technology from Polytechnic of Milan with full marks and holds an Executive Master in Finance at Solvay – ULB – Brussels (A score).

Matteo is fluent in English and Italian, business level of Dutch and elements of French. Matteo is married with 3 children. He has double Italian and Belgian nationality.

Lucy Lombardi

Senior Vice President, Digital & Ecosystem Innovation, Telecom Italia,

Board Member, Technology Group, GSMA


Ms Lombardi is working for Telecom Italia where she is responsible for Digital & Ecosystem Innovation with a focus mainly 5G, softwarization (NFV, SDN, but also eSIM), AI, digital twins, blockchain.

She started her carrier in software development in object oriented language then won a European contest at the European Space Agency (Noordwijk, The Netherlands) which expanded her experience to satellite radiometry. She landed in the mobile telecommunication business in 1996 where she has taken up several roles with increasing managerial responsibilities in the Technology Department, in the Commercial Department and in Strategy Department.

Her experience includes project management for major cross-functional activities, profit & loss responsibilities for roaming, start-up acceleration development, innovation management, industry relations, partnership and ecosystem development.

She has had leadership roles in international groups of the GSMA, has been on the Board of startups and on the Scientific Committee of Fondazione Telecom Italia, and is currently serving on the International Board of GTWN, on the Technology Group of the GSMA and on the Big Data Committee of ISTAT.

Ms Lombardi received a Masters Degree in Physics from the University of Rome with a thesis on an original research project studying infrared radiometry for advanced robotics.

Diego Lopez

Senior Technology Expert, Telefonica

Dr Diego R. Lopez joined Telefonica I+D in 2011 as a Senior Technology Expert on network middleware and services. He is currently in charge of the Technology Exploration activities within the GCTIO Unit of Telefónica I+D. Before joining Telefónica he spent some years in the academic sector, dedicated to research on network service abstractions and the development of APIs based on them. During this period, he was appointed as member of the High-Level Expert Group on Scientific Data Infrastructures by the European Commission.

Diego is currently focused on identifying and evaluating new opportunities in technologies applicable to network infrastructures, and the coordination of national and international collaboration activities. His current interests are related to network virtualization, infrastructural services, network management, new network architectures, and network security. Diego chairs the ETSI ISG on Network Function Virtualization, and the NFVRG within the IRTF.

Apart from this, Diego is a more than acceptable Iberian ham carver, and extremely fond of seeking and enjoying comics, and good discussions on any (in)appropriate matter.

Dimitris Mavrakis

Research Director, ABI Research

Dimitris Mavrakis, Research Director, manages ABI Research’s telco network coverage, including telco cloud platforms, digital transformation and mobile network infrastructure. Research topics include AI and machine learning technologies, telco software and applications, network operating systems, SDN, NFV, LTE diversity, and 5G. 

Prior to joining ABI Research, Dimitris was a Principal Analyst with Ovum, covering telco network infrastructure and leading research in SDN and NFV. At Ovum, Dimitris was involved in thought leadership regarding the future of networks and led more than 50 projects on behalf of Tier One operators and vendors. Prior to Ovum, Dimitris was a Senior and Principal Analyst for Informa Telecoms & Media, after having led and performed road tests on behalf of Tier One network operators around the world.

Dimitris holds a PhD in Mobile Communications and a MSc in Satellite Communications, both from the University of Surrey.

David Boswarthick

Director CSC, ETSI

David heads the ETSI Committee Support Center (CSC) which is an International team of experts who provide comprehensive support to the numerous technical groups in ETSI.
He has been active in the creation, launch and support of several relevant industry groups such as NFV, MEC, and ZSM, and is now actively involved in attracting new technical standards development work into ETSI.

Previously he was involved with the “3rd Generation Partnership Project” (3GPP), supporting various core network groups and was also responsible for the launch and build of the initial M2M work in ETSI.

He has more than 25 years’ experience in the telecommunications sector, which includes 19 years of experience in standardization.

Kevin Wade

Senior Director Product Marketing, Blue Planet

Kevin Wade is Senior Director of Product Marketing at Blue Planet, a division of Ciena. In this role, Kevin is responsible for leading the Blue Planet portfolio marketing team, as well as for driving the creation of programs to drive market awareness and market share for Ciena’s Blue Planet software suite.

Kevin has more than 20 years of experience with successful start-ups and public companies in the networking industry, targeting both the service provider and enterprise markets.  Kevin joined Ciena through the Cyan acquisition, where he was responsible for the company’s product marketing and field marketing activities.

Before joining Cyan in 2012, Kevin was Sr. Director of Product Marketing with Force10/Turin (now Dell Force10) and also held product marketing positions with Ascend (now Alcatel-Lucent) and Cabletron (now Extreme Networks). 

 An accomplished technology marketer, Kevin has presented at leading industry conferences including Supercomm, Comptel, and Cable-Tech Expo, and has published articles in trade magazines such as Data Center Knowledge and Lightwave. Kevin earned his Bachelor’s degree in Finance from Northern Arizona University in 1993.

Dong Sun

Chief Architect of Digital Transformation & AI, Huawei Technologies

Dr. Dong Sun has over 25 years of technical and business experience in telecommunications industry across networking, services and operations, with comprehensive expertise on AI, Big Data, Cloud Computing and Digital Transformation. His current responsibilities include leading business strategy for digital transformation, driving the overall roadmap of business & technical solutions and initiatives for strategic collaboration with operators and industry partners & alliances.

Rui Frazao

EVP & CTO, B-Yond

Rui Frazao is the CTO and Head of European Operations at B-Yond. Prior to B-Yond, Rui was CTO of Vasona Networks, an innovative provider of Multi-Access Edge Computing (MEC) solutions, acquired by ZephyrTel (2018).  He also previously held various Group technology positions during his 15 years at Vodafone including serving as the Director of Network Engineering overseeing network activities across Germany, the Netherlands, Hungary and the Czech Republic. Rui is originally from Portugal and represented his country at the Olympics in Fencing. He’s based in Düsseldorf where he has been living for over a decade with his family.

Mark Newman

Chief Analyst, TM Forum & ConnectivityX

Mark Newman is a chief analyst with 25 years of experience of working with ICT service providers and their technology suppliers. His recent research has focussed on digital transformation and helping both service providers and vendors to both develop and execute strategies and programs that deliver short, medium and long-term benefits.

Mark has deep knowledge of the new digital architectures, processes, capabilities and business models that enable corporations, cities and countries to transform and transition into customer-centric organisations. He delivers workshops and training programs on service provider innovation, IoT and smart cities.

Mark is Chief Analyst at TM Forum, trade association focussed on digital service provider transformation and smart cities. He also runs his own research firm, ConnectivityX.

Recent research produced by Mark include:

Daniel Bar-Lev

Director, Office of the CTO, MEF

As director in the MEF’s Office of the CTO, Daniel is responsible for the development and implementation of a range of strategic MEF programs that are central to MEF’s transformation to an agile-process oriented standards development organization defining, implementing and certifying MEF 3.0 services. These innovative programs – including SD-WAN definition and certification, MEF 3.0 Proofs of Concept and the MEF Developer Community – enable MEF’s 210+ member companies to accelerate the transformation of their networks and operations to offer and deliver MEF 3.0 services.

Daniel has been involved in the networking industry for 25 years holding a variety of positions in RAD Data Communications, as well as co-founding Resolute Networks where he held executive positions. Representing Resolute in the MEF, Daniel served for 3 years as MEF Global Marketing Co-Chair and was elected three times to the MEF Board of Directors. Since 2010, Daniel has been a senior member of the MEF staff.

Arpit Joshipura

GM Networking & Orchestration + Edge/IOT, Linux Foundation

An executive leader & open source software evangelist in carriers, cloud and enterprise IT – networking, orchestrations, operating systems, security, AI, Edge, IOT, hardware and silicon (voted top 5 movers and shakers in telecom industry). Arpit is currently open source networking, orchestration & Edge/IOT executive leader across Linux Foundation projects & ecosystem, including LF Networking – ONAP, OPNFV, ODL, FDIO, OvS, DPDK,OpenSwitch, Akraino/Edge/IOT, as well as major disruptions including VNFs to CNFs(Cloud Native Network functions), 5G and AI.