The Open Group Houston 2018 – Event Highlights

By Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications, The Open Group

The Open Group hosted its latest event July 23 – 26 in the Lone Star State at Houston’s Westin Oaks at the Galleria. The theme was ‘Digital Transformation in the Energy Industry’. We welcomed over 200 attendees from 13 countries, including Brazil, China, and the Netherlands.

Monday and Tuesday began with welcoming remarks from Steve Nunn, President and CEO of The Open Group. The plenaries featured excellent keynotes by speakers from companies including Schneider Electric, ARC Advisory Group, ExxonMobil, BR&L Consulting, IBM, Oracle, Forrester Research, University of St. Thomas, Sicredi Bank, and Shell.

A full house!

The first day kicked off with a dynamic presentation by Peter Martin, VP Innovation, Schneider Electric on ‘The Emergence of Open and Interoperable Asset Control Systems’. Peter shared his view on the industrial driving forces – increasing speed of business; open and interoperable systems; greater business from automation; technology changes driving innovation.

Next up was Harry Forbes, Research Director, ARC Advisory Group who presented on ‘The End of Industrial Automation’.  He emphasized that control system suppliers’ business models need to change.

The plenary continued with a joint presentation – ‘Industry Open Process Automation Activities’ – by Steve Bitar, Automation Advisor, ExxonMobil, and Dennis Brandl, Chief Consultant, BR&L Consulting, Inc. They shared an overview of The Open Group Open Process Automation™ Forum (OPAF). Requirements are driven by business use cases by industries including Oil & Gas, Refining, Pharma, Mining/Minerals, Pulp/Paper, Chemicals, Food & Beverage.

Monday’s plenary concluded with George Stark, Distinguished Engineer, Statistics & Quality, IBM. During his presentation ‘The Profession and Value of Data Science’, he stated a Data Scientist is pioneering, has quantitative training, business acumen, and effective communications. Their role includes: math & statistics; computer science; domain knowledge & soft skills, and communication & visualization.

George also shared the Hollywood version of a Data Scientist. In the 2011 movie ‘Moneyball’, the Oakland A’s GM, Billy Beane, successfully managed to assemble a baseball team on a lean budget – by employing a data scientist who managed computer-generated analysis to acquire new players.

Afternoon track topics were the TOGAF® Standard, Version 9.2 and Open Process Automation. Presentations focused on the TOGAF Essentials 2018 Course; the OPAF Technical Reference Model; digital disruption; open systems software frameworks.

An evening networking reception was held at the hotel.  This was an opportunity to meet with the speakers, IT/OT professionals, industry experts, and exhibitors.

Day two was another busy, productive one!  The morning began with a ‘First Time Attendees and New Members’ orientation.  We were delighted to see and meet so many newcomers!

The plenary featured a couple key announcements.  The Open Group released the first official snapshot of the Digital Practitioner Body of Knowledge™ (DPBoK).  This publication represents the interim results of what is intended to become the DPBoK™ standard.

The digital conversation continued as Venkat Nambiyur, Director, Business Transformation, Oracle, shared more detail on the vision and strategy for further development in this arena.  Key themes for the DPBoK – address most personas (Business Practitioners, Enterprise Architects, Developers, Designers, Platform/Domain Specialists); development of a new digital workforce; address all market segments.

Charlie Betz, Principal Analyst, Forrester Research; Adjunct Professor, University of St. Thomas; and Dr. Bhabani Misra, Professor, Software Engineering, University of St. Thomas, hosted another joint presentation – ‘Managing Digital: Concepts and Practices’. They spotlighted what digital leaders seek:  creating a learning culture; empowering collaborative teams; pervasive integration of digital throughout the firm; operating model guidance; digital workforce; service leadership.

A digital panel discussion followed with Venkat, Charlie, Dr. Misra, and Jorge Fabre, Head of Enterprise Architecture, Sicredi Bank. Dave Lounsbury, CTO and VP Services, The Open Group, moderated the panel.

Another great announcement was made – a new Forum of The Open Group! The Open Subsurface Data Universe™ Forum is focused on developing a standard data platform that will bring together exploration, development, and wells data.

In his presentation, ‘Business Drivers for Developing an Open, Cloud-based Data Architecture for Oil & Gas Companies’, John Krebbers, IT CTO, Shell, gave an exemplary overview of Forum and why it is being initiated.  The Forum highlights the need to separate the data from the applications. This data-centric approach supported by metadata needs to be adopted by many.

Afternoon track topics consisted of Enterprise Architecture, IT4IT™, and Open Platform 3.0™.  Presentations featured transformation within the banking industry; business transformation; combining AI, DevOps, and Semantic Interoperability; Big Data Capabilities in OT-IT.

The Open Group then hosted a private dinner function downtown Houston at Minute Maid Park, home of the Major League Baseball World Series Champions, the Astros!

Minute Maid Park

Wednesday introduced two workshops: Risk Analysis in Process Control featuring Open FAIR™ in conjunction with San Jose State University; and the Internet of Things (IoT) workshop.

Members-only meetings were also held throughout the week.

Huge thanks to our sponsors and exhibitors! BiZZdesign, Orbus Software, Association of Enterprise Architects (AEA)Ahead Technology, FIOS Insight, Van Haren Publishing   @theopengroup   #ogHOU

Hope to see you at our next quarterly event in Singapore, October 29 – November 1, 2018.

Loren K. Baynes, Director, Global Marketing Communications, joined The Open Group in 2013 and spearheads corporate marketing initiatives, primarily the website, blog, media relations, and social media. Loren has over 25 years experience in brand marketing and public relations and, prior to The Open Group, was with The Walt Disney Company for over 10 years. Loren holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Texas A&M University. She is based in the US.

One comment

  1. Hello

    Would it be possible to have access to the presentations made at this event for a short write up in Oil IT Journal?

    Best regards
    Neil McNaughton
    Editor and Publisher, Oil IT Journal
    Public website –
    Cell – +336 7271 2642

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