The Automobile in American Life: Insane or Rational?

May 24, 2016
Hosted by Bonnie D. Graham

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Episode Description

The buzz: “I love my car, but oh you kid.” Edward Humes in The Atlantic [04/12/16] slammed the “primacy” of the automobile in American life as absurd and worse. “Considering the constant fatalities, rampant pollution, and exorbitant costs of ownership, there is no better word to characterize the car’s dominance than insane.” While he acknowledges “the car is the star” with its “unrivaled staying power for an industrial-age, pistons-and-brute-force machine in an era so dominated by silicon and software”, Humes roundly condemns the “allure of convenience” as a subterfuge for many evils. Will our panel agree or not? The experts speak. Larry Stolle, SAP: “Automobiles are not ferocious…it is man who is to be feared” (Robbins B. Stoeckel). Joe Barkai, Industry Analyst: “Technology is neither good nor bad; nor is it neutral” (Melvin Kranzberg). Otto Schell, GM: “First jumper--Tris! Welcome to Dauntless” (Divergent, 2014 film). Join us for The Automobile in American Life: Insane or Rational?

The Future of Cars with Game Changers, Presented by SAP

The Future of Cars with Game Changers, Presented by SAP

Tuesday at 7 AM Pacific Time on VoiceAmerica Business Channel

Game-changing technology strategies are transformational, exciting and disruptive for a reason. They shake up your status quo. They get you thinking about new ways to scale, compete and grow. They move you in amazing new directions.

Join host Bonnie D. Graham as she invites you to take an additional coffee break with game-changers for our special series on how SAP is taking its unrivaled industry expertise into the cloud, on the Future of Cars with Game Changers.

Learn how you can be the savvy Automotive Maestro, Business Transformer or Disruptor who takes your company across the finish line as you look ahead to the next wave of Automotive industry transformation solutions.

The Future of Cars with Game Changers, presented by SAP, can be heard live Tuesdays at 7 AM Pacific / 10 AM Eastern on the VoiceAmerica Business Channel.

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Bonnie D. Graham

Bonnie D. Graham

Bonnie D. Graham has been producing and hosting live talk radio since 1998. She is the creator, producer and host of more than 25 weekly business thought leadership talk series presented by SAP under the banner of Coffee Break with Game-Changers Radio, which debuted in 2011. In a uniquely lively, unscripted roundtable discussion format, Game-Changers offers a broad range of expert business and technology insights to a global business audience.

SAP helps companies of all sizes and industries run better. From back office to boardroom, warehouse to storefront, desktop to mobile device, SAP empowers people and organizations to work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively to stay ahead of the competition. We do this by extending the availability of software across on-premise installations, on-demand deployments, and mobile devices.

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Episode Directory

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

Heather Ashton


Heather Ashton is a Research Manager at IDC Manufacturing Insights. Heather leads the Service Innovation and Connected Products Strategies Service, where she focuses on how manufacturers are applying transformational technology like IoT to aftermarket service in their efforts to increase customer centricity. Automotive is one of the key industries that Heather's research covers. Heather has enjoyed working as an industry analyst for nearly two decades, and she is an active participant and speaker at industry events. She contributes regularly to the IDC Community blog, including a recent post on connected cars that can be viewed here: https://idc-community.com/manufacturing/manufacturing-value-chain/obd_ii_offers_way_for_older_cars_to_becomeconnected. View Guest page

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Joe Barkai


Joe Barkai is a consultant, industry analyst, author and speaker with more than 30 years of experience in helping organizations chart their product and market strategy. His focus is on researching, forecasting and the strategic application of technology innovation in various industrial sectors, with particular interest in the automotive and transportation space. He is the Chairman of the Automotive IoT program at SAE, a professional organization of 128,000 automotive and aerospace engineers. His work is on emerging technologies and business models in connected cars, autonomous driving, and mobility of the future. He works with auto manufacturers and suppliers, technology vendors, and system integrators to guide investments in vehicle telematics, infotainment and self-driving technologies, and formulate the commensurate business development strategies. Previously, he spent 10+ years developing AI applications for modeling, diagnosing and troubleshooting failures in complex equipment. View Guest page

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Joe Burton


Joe Burton is the founder and CEO of Whil Concepts, Inc. (“Whil”), a digital training platform helping employees to reduce stress, increase resiliency and improve their sleep and performance. He’s an entrepreneur in scientific wellbeing, former President of Headspace and spent fifteen years as a global COO in public companies. Joe is an alumnus of Harvard Business School and regular contributor to Forbes, Business Insider and The Huffington Post. He's worked in over 50 countries and travels the world speaking on topics including disruption, culture, employee safety and mindfulness as competitive advantage. Joe discovered mindfulness as a super stressed executive after dismissing it as “definitely not for me” and it changed his life. View Guest page

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Ruthbea Yesner Clarke


Ruthbea Yesner Clarke is research director of the global Smart Cities Strategies program at IDC. In this program, Ms. Clarke discusses the strategies and execution of relevant Smart City technologies including the non-technology best practice areas, such as governance, innovation, partnerships and business models essential for Smart City development. Ms. Clarke's research includes the Internet of Things, Big Data and Analytics, cloud computing, mobility and social media in public works, intelligent transportation systems, intelligent public safety, smart water and citizen engagement and Open Data initiatives. Ms. Clarke contributes to consulting engagements to support state and local governments' Smart City strategies and IT vendors’ overall Smart City market strategies. View Guest page

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Chet Harter


Chet Harter is a Senior Principal for the Automotive industry in North America for SAP and works with many of SAP’s supplier, OEM, and dealer customers in North America. A 13-year veteran of SAP’s industry team, Chet spent years working in automotive tier 1 materials and operations management prior to joining SAP. View Guest page

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Jeff Hojlo


As Program Director, Product Innovation, Jeff Hojlo leads IDC Manufacturing Insights research and analysis of the PLM market, including topics such as the development of an innovation platform and the intersection of product design, development, and digital manufacturing. He is also responsible for research on business and IT issues related to the engineering-oriented value chain (EOVC), which includes automotive, aerospace & defense, industrial machinery, and heavy equipment manufacturers, as well as the technology-oriented value chain (TOVC), which includes manufacturers in the electronics and semiconductor markets. Complementing 20 years of IT industry experience in product marketing roles with companies such as Engage, RSA Security, and Performaworks, Jeff has worked for the past 10 years in the PLM industry. Most recently, he was global industry marketing lead at Siemens PLM Software for multiple industries. Jeff regularly contributes to the IDC Manufacturing Insights Community. View Guest page

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Kimberly Knickle


Kimberly Knickle is research vice president in IDC's manufacturing group. She is responsible for research and analysis of business and IT issues for manufacturers. She joined IDC in 2006 and leads the IT Priorities & Strategies program, which focuses on hot topics and technologies that are changing the way manufacturers buy and use IT, such as digital transformation, big data and analytics, cloud, IoT, mobility, and 3D printing. Before joining the analyst industry, Kim held various roles in IT services, engineering, and product safety testing, beginning her career as an engineer at Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. Kim has a MBA from Boston University's School of Management, focusing on Marketing and Operations and a BS in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University. View Guest page

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Mike Lackey


Mike Lackey joined SAP in 2008 through the acquisition of Visiprise and has global responsibility for Solution Management, LoB Manufacturing. With previous roles at Visiprise, NetVendor and Teradyne Manufacturing Software Group, Mike has a unique set of knowledge that covers both manufacturing software and design collaboration along with over 20 years of experience in the manufacturing sector. Early in his career, he started as a manufacturing engineer with DCA/Attachmate, which provided him with invaluable first-hand knowledge and understanding of how SAP customers can use SAP’s Manufacturing Solution Portfolio to improve their business. Mike earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology and an MA in Business Administration from Mercer University with dual concentrations in International Business and Marketing. View Guest page

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William “Bill” Newman


William (“Bill”) Newman serves as the NA Strategic Industry Advisor at SAP, providing industry perspective, strategic business advice, and thought leadership to support SAP NA automotive and discrete industry customers and their co-innovation programs. Bill is also an author, professional speaker, writer and consultant with 30 years of experience in strategy and IT planning across multiple industry sectors. A Certified Management Consultant since 1995, he has led consulting practices at Booz & Company, KPMG BearingPoint, and Grant Thornton, and led his own consulting firm, Newport Consulting Group, prior to SAP. The author of two books on enterprise performance, Bill’s writings have been a featured LinkedIN Editor’s Choice. He was a national board member of the Institute of Management Consultants (IMC USA), and currently serves on the Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants (MACPA) Management Consulting Taskforce and the McKinsey Quarterly Executive Panel. View Guest page

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C. Sean Pike


C. Sean Pike is Program Vice President for IDC's Security Products group, leading IDC's Security Products, Data Security, Information Governance & eDiscovery, and Identity & Access Management research programs. Sean provides competitive intelligence, strategic advisory, and thought leadership for security, data protection, governance, risk, compliance, and legal discovery technology and solutions. He joined IDC in 2014 with 17 years of experience blending operational security, audit, and risk functions with the demands of regulatory and compliance programs within highly regulated industry. He holds a J.D. degree and a Certificate of Advanced Study (CAS) in National Security and Counterterrorism Law from the Syracuse University College of Law, and M.S. in Telecommunications from the School of Information Studies at Syracuse University. He is a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US), Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH), and an attorney licensed in the State of Maryland. View Guest page

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Bill Powell


Bill Powell is the Director of Enterprise Architecture for Automotive Resources International (ARI), the largest privately-held fleet management company in the world. Bill is directly responsible for leading the evolution of ARI’s global IT system architecture in support of its business strategy and is currently focused on expanding ARI’s products and services within its European operations. Bill is a passionate analytics advocate with a specialty in coupling in-memory systems with IoT information to drive innovation within the automotive market. He provides keynote speeches on the global stage focusing on how organizations that intertwine analytics with core business functions can create efficiencies, a culture of innovation, and turn customers into raving fans. Bill holds a BS degree in Computing and Technology, summa cum laude, from Drexel University. He is pursuing an Executive MBA at Drexel University and has been recently certified in Big Data and Social Analytics from MIT. View Guest page

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Otto Schell


As a Member of the Board of Directors of the SAP German Speaking User Group (DSAG), Otto Schell leads the Resorts Business Process and Industries Solution, Globalization and Innovation (Transformation / Industry 4.0). He also is main contact to international SAP User Groups. Within the DSAG community he foster discussions on IoT, Industry 4.0 to aware and adopt Digital Transformation opportunities. Within GM, Otto Schell is the Global SAP Business Architect and SAP CCoE Lead. The position owns and integrates the SAP Enterprise Architecture approach on design, deployment, operation and continuous improvement of GMs SAP business process landscape. Furthermore ensure the alignment across GM business process requirements, standardizes products, services and content based on a common “meta-model” towards GM business process vision and to enable real time scenarios. View Guest page

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Larry Stolle


Larry Stolle is the Senior Global Director of Automotive Marketing at SAP. He is responsible for marketing the entire solution portfolio, spanning the Automotive OEM, the Automotive Supplier and Automotive Sales and Service organizations including automotive retail and importer business. Larry joined SAP in 2006 and has more than 45 years of experience at automotive dealerships, automotive manufacturers and importers, and IT systems integrators. He has extensive knowledge of the automotive business with special focus on automotive retailing across the globe. He has never stopped being a “car guy”! View Guest page

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Rick Varner


Rick Varner is a strategy and transformation leader, advisor and mentor specializing in modern technology delivery and the shift to digital strategies. He serves as a Sr. Executive Partner for Gartner Inc., a premier technology research and advisory firm. Previously, Rick was Global CIO for Cooper Standard, a $4B automotive parts supplier with 82 operating locations in 19 countries. He served as Division CIO for Terex, a $10B diversified equipment company. Rick led IT for the Seattle based Genie business segment. Previously, Rick was Division CIO for Medtronic, a $12B medical device company. In this role he led the divestiture, of the Seattle based Physio-Control business unit across 32 countries. As Division CIO for Delphi, a $28B automotive parts supplier, Rick was responsible for the Electronics and Safety division; Delphi’s 31 technical centers and the Asia Pacific regional operations. Rick is a Professional Engineer, active volunteer and experimental aviation enthusiast. View Guest page

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