Global Speakers


Prof. Peter Thomas

Director, HaileyburyX


Forum Chairperson


Panel Discussion: Where We Go From Here In Transforming Into An Integrated Digital And Virtual Campus?


Peter Thomas is currently director of the organic edtech HaileyburyX in Melbourne, Australia where he is leading the development of a state-of-the-art online global learning environment, establishing Haileybury as a thought leader in emerging technologies for learning including AI, data analytics and interactive platforms, building new industry partnerships and where he created the award-winning educator work system called Agile Learning Design, along with a new world-class microcredentialling framework, both of which were selected as Innovative Schools winners in 2019 and 2020 and for which he was recognized on The Educator Hotlist after 12 months in the industry.

Peter was previously a Professor of Information Management, CTO of the e-commerce arm of a FTSE100 company, has developed multi-million dollar technology research institutes in the UK and Australia and developed and chaired over 20 international research conferences, along with being Editor-in-Chief of a leading international peer-reviewed research journal from SpringerNature. He has created and managed large government-funded and industry-partnered research projects, large and small business units and managed commercial and academic collaborations with countries including China, India and Japan.

Peter was co-founder and executive director of The Leasing Foundation in the City of London, is Creative Director of the Wellcome, Arts Council and Granta-funded Medicine Unboxed programme and has held and holds Visiting Professorial positions at Brunel University, London, Falmouth University, Newcastle University and Beijing Normal University, China where he is Dean for International Projects as part of the International Institute for Big Data in Finance. He was a Senior Visiting Fellow at The University of Melbourne, Australia and was a Fellow of both the IEE and BCS.

He was educated at Leeds, Cambridge and Hull universities and has a bachelor’s degree in literature and linguistics and a PhD in psychology and computer science.


Lauren Sayer

Director of Digital Learning


Forum Chairperson


Addressing The Challenges Of Remote Learning

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Educational leadership has always been at the heart and centre of Lauren’s professional career. Lauren started her career in Melbourne’s western suburbs and quickly rose to leadership positions in educational innovation and middle years pedagogy. Lauren’s pioneering approaches to the use of educational technology in schools in the late 90s established her as one of the nation’s leaders in this area, being acknowledged as ICTEV’s educator of the year.

Her expertise, dedication and enthusiasm in this area of education led her to (several) leadership roles within the educational technology industry where, always with the learner at the centre, she helped international learning technologies companies grow and develop their products and professional learning for educators.

Lauren recent roles have included Head of Education at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne where she championed the cause for world class pedagogy and continuous learning for those students who were not able to attend school in a traditional setting as well as strengthening partnerships between the student’s school, hospital and family during periods which posed many challenges.

As Director of Digital Learning at Haileybury, Lauren was able to spearhead the effective integration and application of educational technology across the school. Lauren was responsible for overseeing the implementation of online, continuous reporting and feedback through the schools content / learning management system as well as (with her team) rapidly prepare the entire Haileybury school community for the transition to online learning with the onset of the COVID-19 epidemic in 2020.

Throughout her career, Lauren has always placed innovative pedagogies at the heart of her leadership, and she is a passionate advocate of supporting engaged, articulate, creative, critical and independent digital learners backed by a modern digital learning curriculum. Empowered by her natural curiosity and thirst for professional learning, Lauren is a leading voice in the Victorian and National educational community through her work with ACEL, Code Like a Girl, Robogals and other organizations who are committed to learning for the future.


Associate Professor Thomas Cochrane

Associate Professor (Technology Enhanced Learning), Melbourne CSHE

University of Melbourne


Preparing For The Future: Rethinking The Education Delivery Model

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Dr. Adam Brown

Senior Lecturer, Digital Media

Deakin University


Community, Co-Creation, Choice: Playing With(in) The Roles Of Teachers And Students

Deakin University

Dr Adam Brown is a Senior Lecturer in Digital Media at Deakin University, creator of the Social Media Stories podcast, maker of the Digital Learning with @digitalzones website and podcast, and co-host of the Our Gamified World web series. He is the author of Judging ‘Privileged’ Jews: Holocaust Ethics, Representation and the ‘Grey Zone’ (Berghahn, 2013) and co-author of Communication, Digital Media and Everyday Life (Oxford UP, 2015). Adam’s interdisciplinary research has spanned Holocaust representation across various genres, women in film, surveillance cinema, mediations of rape, digital children’s television, nonhuman animal ethics, transmedia storytelling and gaming cultures. Adam’s current research and teaching interests centre on digital learning and gamification. Further details can be found on the Digital Zones website and you can connect with Adam on Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.


Professor Michael Sankey

President of the Australian Council on Open, Distance and eLearning (ACODE)

Adjunct Professor Griffith University


The Changing Face Of Technology Enhanced Learning


Professor Sankey is the Director of Learning Transformations at Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia. He specializes in technology enhanced learning, staff and leadership development, curriculum renewal, online pedagogies, multimodal design, digital, visual and multiliteracies. He has worked in Higher Education for 30+ years and is particularly interested in how constructively aligned and aesthetically enhanced learning environments can better transmit concepts to students, particularly those from diverse backgrounds.

In addition to this role, Michael is the President of the Australasian Council on Open, Distance and e-Learning (ACODE) and is the Director of the ACODE Learning Technologies Leadership Institute. This is a major initiative of ACODE that is run bi-yearly for those aspiring to become leaders in the area of technology enhanced learning.


Dr. David Kellermann

Senior Lecturer, School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering



How UNSW Integrates Chatbot Technology In Creating Learning Communities Supporting Social Learning For Their Students



Catherine Zhao

Lead, Learning Quality Assurance

NSW Department of Education


Driven By Data: The Use Of Analytics In Education

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Alex Borlenghi

Head of Digital Learning

Luther College


Teaching In The New Reality: Using AR And VR To Enhance Learning


Peter West

Learning Technologies Team Manager - Digital Learning Lab



Getting The Right Blend: Why Schools Should Explore A Variety Of Solutions To Deliver Blended Learning To Students



Prof. Dinakar Bhotta

Assistant Professor - IT, Finance & Entrepreneurship

SP Jain School of Global Management


How SP Jain School Of Global Management Is Leveraging Its Engaged Learning Online (ELO) Studios Though The Pandemic Across Multiple Campuses, Geographies And Time Zones

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Mr Dinakar Bhotta is an Assistant Professor in IT, Finance, Entrepreneurship and an student engagement specialist working in a full-time position at SP Jain School of Global Management, Sydney Campus since 2017.  Prior to this, was a lecturer at University of Southern Queensland, Sydney Education Centre Sydney for 10 years. He has been teaching undergraduate and postgraduate Business, Accounting and IT subjects for over 14 years now. Mr. Dinakar has also worked in India in various Pharmaceutical marketing and sales positions between 2003 and 2007. Although, Mr. Dinakar specialises in emerging technologies including AI, Machine learning, he has vast experience teaching Finance, Accounting and Business subjects and is passionate about student engagement.

Mr Dinakar did his bachelor’s degree from BITS Pilani, Rajasthan, India. He holds three Masters’ Degrees from Australian Universities. He has a Master in Business Administration (International Business), Master in Project Management (Information Technology) and Master in Information Systems (Technology Management) qualification. Apart, he also has a Diploma level qualification in Training and Assessment from TAFE, New South Wales.  Mr. Dinakar Bhotta is currently doing his PhD in the field of health analytics.

In short, Mr Dinakar is a firm believer in hard work, continuous learning and ongoing development. He likes to help others in achieving their goals and objectives, which makes him a great team-player and a visionary leader. He also believes that “short-cuts in life are short-lived and the results of hard work are hard to be replicated”.  He is a firm believer of lifelong learning, self-development, ethics and honesty.


Prof. Shelley Kinash

Director, Advancement of Learning & Teaching

University of Southern Queensland


The New Normal – Getting Ready For The Post Pandemic Reality In Schools


As the Director, Advancement of Learning and Teaching, at the University of Southern Queensland (USQ), Professor Shelley Kinash oversees the learning, teaching, assessment and curricular employability components of University-wide student experience and graduate success. As the Chair of the Education Quality Committee (EQC), and a member of Academic Board Executive, she monitors, leads critical discussions and oversees continual improvements to the quality of the educational experience (e.g. First Year Experience). She Chairs the Learning and Teaching Environments Working Party (of EQC), which joins-up learning and teaching with ICT and Enterprise services to progress the ongoing development of digital experience.

Professor Kinash draws-upon the success of her three Category One, National Research Grants (funded through the Australian Government, Office for Learning and Teaching), applying multi-institution research results to lead excellence in student and graduate employability, student experience and student evaluation of courses and teaching. For example, applying the findings of the Graduate Employability Good Practice Guide, which she co-authored, Professor Kinash was the lead author of the USQ-wide Employability Strategy and the accompanying Guide to Implementing the Employability Pillar of the Academic Plan, used by every School University-wide, to foster graduate success, as well as the USQ Demo Course, Career Skills Advantage, requested by USQ International to recruit international students.

As Director, Professor Kinash leads a team of 40 people (academic and professional staff) and oversees a budget of $5 million. She led a major restructure, and leads the resulting Learning and Teaching Unit (LTU) to support a new plan (led by Professor Kinash) for University-wide Academic Development, Digital Learning Innovation and Program and Course Enhancement. The restructure included migrating 17 media-professionals (e.g. graphic designers, coders) into the LTU to co-create excellence in online learning materials and the overall digital student learning experience. Professor Kinash has a h-index of 18, with 1471 total citations. Her top-cited journal paper, presenting research into mobile learning, has been cited 264 times. She is serving a 3-year term on the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching & Learning (ISSoTL) Convenings Committee.


Dr. Jürgen Rudolph

Head of Research & Senior Lecturer

Kaplan Singapore


Educational Continuity Planning: Transitioning From Online Back To Face-To-Face Learning


Dr. Juergen Rudolph have more than 20 years of Higher Education Teaching experience as well as substantial Training and Facilitation experience. His research focus is on Higher Education and his current teaching focus areas (at undergraduate and postgraduate levels) are Knowledge Management, International Management, Entrepreneurship & Innovation and Business Research Methods.

In his role at Kaplan Higher Education Singapore, he is the Head of Research and a Senior Lecturer, as well as a Member of the Academic and Examination Boards. He is also the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Applied Learning & Teaching and also serve on additional Editorial Boards and as an Honorary Vice-President (International Research Development and Relations) of the Communication Institute of Greece.

Dr. Juergen has attained four postgraduate degrees: MA and PhD qualifications from the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg (Germany), an MBA from the University of Louisville, Kentucky, USA and an M.Ed. from University of Adelaide, Australia. He also holds a Specialist Diploma in Applied Learning and Teaching from Republic Polytechnic, Singapore.


Dr. Amanda White

Deputy Head - Students and Subjects

University of Technology Sydney


Exploring The Tension Between Assessments And Accreditation In Remote / Online Learning

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Amanda is the Deputy Head (Education) of the Accounting Discipline in the UTS Business School and has been teaching accounting for almost two decades, focusing on auditing and assurance. She has won Faculty, University and national recognition for her use of technology to facilitate learning including video interviews to develop employability skills, online platforms for team-based learning and the use of social media to engage students. Amanda is also passionate about helping students learn auditing across the world through her YouTube channel Amanda Loves to Audit, with over 40,000 subscribers and 3.5 million views. Her experiences with large scale academic misconduct that have resulted in the development of a board game to help students better understand academic integrity and driven improvement in processes within her discipline area to support academics in investigating and reporting breaches of academic integrity standards.

Amanda’s expertise in the use of technology in teaching and assessment has been recognized by her selection as a Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert (MIEExpert) for 2020-21. She is also a member of the Education Board at Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, providing oversight of the professional qualification process for those candidates seeking to become Chartered Accountants.


Prof. Peter Reimann

Professor of Education

University of Sydney


Interactive Roundtable Discussion: How Institutions Using Different Blended Learning Approach To Improve Students’ Learning Experience In Remote Learning During The COVID-19 Pandemic

  • Roundtable A: Synchronous & Asynchronous Online Learning
  • Roundtable B: Social Learning

University of Sydney


Prof. Linda Knight

Associate Professor, Early Childhood – Digital Media and Creative Practice

RMIT University


RMIT Case Study: Teaching During COVID-19 Pandemic Crisis

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Dr. Ambarish Kulkarni

Senior Lecturer - Computer Aided Engineering

Swinburne University of Technology


Get Immersed: How Swinburne University Adopting XR Continue To Deliver Interactive & Immersive Education Online During Ongoing COVID-19

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Ambarish Kulkarni is a mechanical design engineer with a PhD on Development of an EV drivetrain for a small car. He specializes in mechanical design with focus on finite element, virtual and augmented reality. His research focuses on product design and development activities. He is best known for his work on the development of human centered products. He is currently working on design of medical, automotive process/products improvements using virtual and augmented reality tools. His current projects are on electric vehicle drivetrains, battery packaging, bushfire shelter and therapeutic sleep system designs. He is a specialist in using specialized virtual design tools with significant field and industry experience. Further applications of his research have included bio-mechanical modeling and virtual sub-system designs. He was in industrial R&D career and became a full-time academic since 2009. His current role is Senior Lecturer-Computer Aided Engineering, with research projects on development of Bombardier Trams, electric vehicle battery packaging, therapeutic sleep system design and bushfire shelters. His teaching focus is to enhance student engagement and learning through industry best practices (e.g.: Siemens industry 4.0) and recently embedding digital learning environments (DLEs) in his classes, including augmented virtual reality (AVR), finite element analysis (FEA), and 3D printing. He led the creation and delivery of the first Industry 4.0 unit in Australia all , this included the creation of a first of its kind digital twin project based on industry 4.0. Over the course of the class students explored for the first time key concepts in Internet of Things (IoT), AVR tools, mobile applications, product lifecycle management (PLM) and business case studies, which were applied in developing their own digital twin, based on our cyber physical factory. He is a Fellow member of the Institution of Engineers-Australia, member- Society of Automotive Engineers-International and American Society of Mechanical Engineers-USA.


Dr. R.V. Gundur

Lecturer in Criminology

Flinders University


Interactive Roundtable Discussion: How Institutions Using Different Blended Learning Approach To Improve Students’ Learning Experience In Remote Learning During The COVID-19 Pandemic

  • Roundtable D: Content For Online Learning Experience

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R.V. Gundur is a lecturer in criminology at Flinders University, where he teaches about criminological theory and cybercrime. Given the shift to online and blended learning resulting from COVID-10, R.V. has used various means to deliver content. This includes streaming on Twitch, developing a bespoke podcast, and self-producing short video segments. In addition, he has worked to develop processes to encourage ongoing, student engagement that results in a safe, positive learning environment. R.V. has a variety of teaching experiences including teaching school children, teaching English to adults, and teaching criminology in universities. He has worked in The United States, Spain, Wales, Singapore, and Australia. His academic research focuses on illicit markets, organized crime, and cybercrime. He can be found on Twitter @gr4d and his research and teaching materials and his cybercrime podcast can be found on his website at


Hylton Abrahams

Former Strategic Projects Manager

Victoria University of Wellington


How Victoria University Of Wellington Successfully Deploy Digital Assessment With 80% Positive Student Experience

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Dr. Nabin Sharma

Senior Lecturer, School of Computer Science

University of Technology Sydney (UTS)


University Of Technology Sydney (UTS) Case Study: Leveraging AI In Redefining Teaching & Learning During Remote Learning

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Dr. Joseph Crawford

Lecturer of Learning & Teaching

University of Tasmania


Educational Continuity Planning: Transitioning From Online Back To Face-To-Face Learning

University of Tasmania

Dr Joseph Crawford is an Academic at the University of Tasmania. Dr Crawford’s primary research interest is leadership and behavioral theory and development, specifically as it relates to higher education, student development, academic development, management, human resource management, organisational behavior, and organisational psychology.

Before joining academia, Joseph worked within education and management roles. Through managerial roles and employment within the private education industry, Joseph developed a well-grounded understanding of practical issues in management and leadership. Joseph undertook his Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Tasmania with a focus on defining and measuring authentic leader behaviors. Dr Crawford founded a sustainable men’s grooming product company, Fifth Estate Co., and carbon negative gin distillery Negative Distillery, with recognition nationally for his innovative research and development.


Prof. Feng Wang

Professor of Chemistry, Department of Chemistry and Biotechnology and Theme Leader of Center for Translational Atomaterials (CTAM)

Swinburne University of Technology


Students’ Real Learning Experience From Remote: The Swinburne Experience

Swinburne University of Technology logo

Feng Wang is Professor of Chemistry at Department of Chemistry and Biotechnology and Theme Leader of Center for Translational Atomaterials (CTAM) at Swinburne University of Technology (SUT). Feng is a lead theoretical/computational chemist, she has published nearly 200 peer reviewed articles in her career. Feng is Fellow of RACI (2001-) and Fellow of the AIP (2010-).

Professor Wang developed a new 3rd year undergraduate unit CHE30006 “Computational and Advanced Organic Chemistry” for BSc students in 2014. This second semester unit contains 48 hours with 24 hour lectures and 24 hour computer laboratory work with a 40-60% project component. In this unit, the students are learning through doing their projects. Last semester, i.e., Semester 2, 2020 Victorians suffered from the pandemic lockdown and this unit had minimum impact and achieved the largest student number with more impressive student participation rate for unit activities than previous years.