2022 Highlights for EMEA CIO Communities

Community Blog
Written by Liam McGlynn

JANUARY 12, 2023

In 2022, Evanta’s European CIO communities were back in full swing, coming together on nearly fifty occasions to address mission critical priorities, ranging from talent shortages to cybersecurity. Throughout the year, CIOs gathered in person at six Executive Summits and seven Inner Circle Dinners and grew their connections virtually during thirty-five Town Halls and Peer Rountables, sharing their stories, exchanging ideas and making new connections. A few executives shared their experiences:

Absolutely amazing. This is the type of event that I was missing; networking, open and frank conversations, not pushy (opposite actually).”

– Stijn de Bekker
Head of DBS Marketing, BAT

Fantastic and well-run event, with engaging content and top-notch networking opportunities.”

– Will Gerrish
Principal Technology Strategist, Citrix Systems, Inc.

Great conference – good balance between plenary sessions, boardroom sessions and peer connects/networking. The one thing that makes this event stand out amongst similar events is that it is really for CIOs, by CIOs, and is not vendor-driven.”

– Judith van de Pas
COO, Chief Data & Analytics Office, Shell

CIO Top Priorities

Our annual Leadership Perspective Survey is designed to gather key insights from the executive community and help shape key discussion topics throughout our sessions each year. CIO community members' top priorities in 2022 were:

  • Cybersecurity Strategies
  • Digital Talent (Recruitment, Retention, Upskilling, etc.)
  • IT Strategy, Governance & Operating Models
  • Data & Analytics
  • Digital Business Priorities

Highly-Rated Presentations

Here are some of the most popular sessions from European CIO Executive Summits this year:

Keynote: Putting People and Digital Skills at the Heart of Transformation
In this session, Michael Müller-Wünsch, CIO, Otto GmbH & Co KG discussed critical success factors for the organisation’s transformation journey in an age of online business and powerful competition. Michael outlined how CIOs can facilitate the expansion of digital competence throughout the organisation, and the key advantages of a one-team mindset. 

Breakout Session: How Organisations Can Support Employee Wellbeing Through Technology
In this session, Ceri Stokoe, CIO European Operations, QBE and Alice Hendy, Cyber Safety Specialist, QBE discussed the role IT leaders have in understanding and addressing the mental health and wellbeing of employees across their organisations. Ceri shared how QBE Insurance is addressing the challenges associated with mental health in the workforce, together with wider employee engagement initiatives, and Alice Hendy detailed how she developed and deployed a crisis intervention tool across QBE to assist those struggling with their mental health. 

Breakout Session: The CIO's Readiness for Ransomware Attack – How Prepared is Your Organisation?
In this session, John Maynard, CEO and David Calder, Chief Product Officer at Adarma joined with Scott Mcelney, Global CISO, Weir to share first-hand experiences of being ‘on the ground’ during a major ransomware attack. John, David and Scott discussed the importance of having a well-rehearsed plan in place and the role leadership can play in galvanising teams during an attack.

Breakout Session: TechAtBoots – How to Build an Ecosystem of Technologists in Your Organisation
In this session, Rich Corbridge, CIO, Boots shared how he and his team developed a ‘store centric’ IT strategy to identify legacy systems, capture ideas for innovation and accelerate digital business. Rich discussed why such initiatives are fundamental in identifying the specific needs of customers and colleagues, and how CIOs can drive similar initiatives in their organisations to accelerate digital business.

Highly-Rated Virtual Gatherings

Evanta also hosted a number of Town Halls and Boardrooms virtually for European CIO communities. Here is a sample of the most popular sessions:

UK & Ireland CIO Virtual Boardroom: Personalised Conversation – Creating Next Level Customer Experience
In this session, Nicolas Farin, Head of Enterprise EMEA, Meta - Business Messaging, Michelle Kearns, Head of IT, Boots and Adam Warne, CIO, River Island led a peer discussion about how Business Messaging has enabled companies to take customer experience to the next level by providing a convenient and comfortable environment for consumers, delivering a springboard to drive business growth. CIOs in attendance discussed how organisations can build end-to-end customer journeys, improving customer experience and increasing the chance of conversion – from lead generation to driving sales.

UK & Ireland CIO Virtual Town Hall: Preventing Employee Burnout: How can CIOs Drive Engagement and Resilience in Their Workforce
In this session, Ryan Purvis, Head of Solutions & Engineering, Lakeside Software led an open discussion about how CIOs can ensure their teams continue to operate in a healthy, balanced and sustainable way. Ryan outlined how to raise awareness of burnout signals and spot them early, even in a remote ‘out of sight, out of mind’ setting, and the group discussed strategies to gather employee feedback at scale and better drive organisational change and resilience.

France CIO & CISO Virtual Boardroom: Embracing Zero Trust to Strengthen the Security Posture
This session was led by Eric Vedel, Director, CISO Advisory – EMEAR, Cisco Secure;Julien Moreau, Cybersecurity Specialist, Cisco Duo, Cisco Systems; Fernando Ruiz, VP, CIO France, Coca-Cola European Partners and Stephane Lenco, CISO, Thales. During the discussion, CIOs shared strategies to manage additional complexity caused by Zero Trust Networks and Passwordless and discovered how their Zero Trust investment can support the next steps towards SASE.

Most Popular Content

Evanta shares executive insights and peer-driven content with community members, and here is a look at what CIOs in European communities were reading and listening to this year.

What’s in Store for 2023?

We have already confirmed several dates for our CIO Inner Circle Dinners and Executive Summits this year, and more dates will be announced soon:

Be sure to join your local CIO community to never miss an opportunity to connect with like-minded peers on mission critical topics!


Liam McGlynn headshot

Liam McGlynn

Content Coordinator at Evanta, a Gartner Company