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NZTech Inform – it’s time for a chat!

Nineteen months ago, the New Zealand Government launched the Digital Council for Aotearoa. An independent advisory group drawn from the technology industry and communities, its purpose is to advise the Government on how to maximise the benefits of digital and data-driven technologies to increase equality and inclusivity, wellbeing and community resilience.

The Digital Council’s  focus for 2020 was Trust and they looked into automated decision making. During 2021, they have been exploring inclusion, and the 2022 plan is to provide advice for growth and innovation. On Friday, they released a discussion document on backing a humming, thriving e-commerce and digital marketplace for Aotearoa which includes ten useful recommendations for the Minister.

This week, it’s also Mental Health Awareness Week (MHAW) and given the pandemic’s ongoing uncertainty it is especially important in both our personal and professional lives. This year’s theme is take time to kōrero/mā te kōrero, ka ora – a little chat can go a long way. Over time, these chats help create meaningful connections, understand each other better and ensure we have people we can count on when times are tough. The guiding whakataukī for Mental Health Awareness Week 2021 is:

Mā te whakarongo, ka mōhio
through listening, comes knowledge

Mā te mōhio, ka mārama,
through knowledge, comes understanding

Mā te mārama, ka matau,
through understanding, comes wisdom

Mā te matau, ka ora
through wisdom, comes wellbeing

So today, check in with a friend or colleague. Also register for TechWomen’s Take time to Kōrero event on Thursday and join the conversation on dispersed teams and mental wellbeing in times of uncertainty.

This week, at Alert Level 3, I am connecting via Zoom with many of the tech communities across New Zealand. I am attending the BlockchainNZ annual strategy planning session, the tech industry quarterly meeting with the Education agency CEO’s, the IoT Alliance and AI Forum executive council meetings, and providing feedback into the draft Digital Industry Transformation Plan.

I am looking forward to next week’s school holidays which will bring some allocated family time for bike rides and other lockdown fun. I hope you are taking care and keeping safe. 

Ngā mihi,

Graeme Muller

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