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A weekly podcast on the impacts of digital technologies on the oil and gas sector

Jun 15, 2023

A large integrated oil and gas company has invited me to address their global center for data excellence. That such an organizational creation is necessary is both telling for some and enlightening for others.

Data has been central to my work on digital innovations in oil and gas from the very beginning because digital innovation is almost always about capturing value from a reliable data asset. My simple digital innovation formula includes data at its very core:

  1. Sensors generate data

  2. Analytics (AI and machine learning tools) interpret the data

  3. Semi-autonomous and fully autonomous devices (robots, drones) carry out real work using that data

  4. Cloud computing is where data lives

  5. Trusted ledger services provide confidence in the data.

In hindsight, it’s rather sensible that a center for data excellence is now part of the organization structure of a big oil and gas player. Without better data acumen, oil and gas companies are like street brawlers showing up for a fist fight only to discover the opponent is equipped with a pistol. We’re seriously outgunned in the fight for talent, the battle for capital investment, and the latest race called energy transition (which has a huge data theme to it).

The work culture of oil and gas is the basis for why our industry lags other sectors in how we think about and approach data.