Stephen Unger

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About Stephen

Until recently I was a Board member of Ofcom, the UK regulator for digital communications. I was one of three executive members of the Board, and I also served as Acting Chief Executive. I set strategy, represented the UK internationally, and led Ofcom’s technology programme.

Before I was a regulator I spent several years in the private sector, working for start-ups developing new wireless technologies. I have particularly fond memories of Ionica, Cambridge’s first billion-dollar company.

The first part of my career was in astrophysics research. I was the first Director of what was then the most powerful telescope in the world. I published over 40 research papers in scientific journals.

I now hold a portfolio of non-executive and advisory roles in the technology sector, covering the closely related fields of telecommunications and data science:

  • I am a Board member of the Geospatial Data Commission. I chair a taskforce on data-driven innovation in transport networks.
  • I am on the advisory boards of Faculty AI and ASSIA, both companies which are developing advanced data analytic tools.
  • I work as a consultant with various companies in the tech sector. I advise on the issues that arise when technology strategy meets public policy.
  • I am a member of the programme board for government-funded 5G test-beds, and the independent assurance panel for the Emergency Services Network programme.

In my spare time I am writing a book on the history of technology regulation. This explores how modern communications networks have been shaped, over a period of more than 200 years, by the interplay between technological innovation, commercial rivalry, and public policy.

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