News & Interviews

Interview with Edge Women of the Year Finalist. Kaniz Mahdi – SVP Technology Architecture & Innovation at Deutsche Telekom

In the lead-up to Edge Computing World, we’re taking some time to speak to this year’s finalists for The Edge Women of the Year Award.

Today we’re talking to Kaniz Mahdi – SVP Technology Architecture & Innovation at Deutsche Telekom

 

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  1. How do you see the edge market developing over the next few years?

The compute and communications industries have been evolving quite independent of each other for the past few decades. With the advent of 5G, specifically, it’s laser focus on latency critical applications, the Edge has emerged as highly sought-after market for both the compute and the communications industries. It’s still early days to predict on which side it lands finally, but it’s going to take a collaborative effort from both sides to row this boat.

 

  1.  How does diversity benefit the edge environment?

Edge is inherently diverse, with heterogeneity embedded in its DNA. As much as Edge is about compute, it’s more about communications, and even more so about fusion of compute and communications for distributed intelligence – it will require an interesting juxtaposition of tools of all trades, be it in terms of heterogeneity in tech, or people who take the helm of plan, design and operations of the Edge.

 

  1. Tell us one lesson you’ve learned that’s unique to being a female leader in the Edge space.

An important lesson I learned over the course of my journey since the inception of the Edge is that one person alone is not enough to bring about the change – find trusted partners who share your vision
and go conquer the space with them. The Open Grid Alliance is a true testament of this, a daring vision shared only by a handful, and now a fully established industry body, with dirt to cloud stacks spanning multiple grid innovation zones, all put in place within a matter of a year.

 

  1. What advice would you give to other women entering the edge space?

Don’t be shy voicing an opinion that’s outside the norm – it’s your conviction that attracts partners, and makes your voice stronger, not the similarity of opinions.

 

  1. What are some ways in which you have helped to support and lift other women in the space up?

By nurturing their talent and giving them the visibility and encouragement to take on the seemingly impossible. Edge being a complex heterogenous space, it was extremely difficult to find the right talent to help us navigate this space. We picked raw talent from academia and industry, each of them being an expert in their own field (Electrical Engineering for comms, Computer Science for compute and AI for intelligence) and created an environment to cross pollinate and groom them all to collectively take on the
complex challenges that sit at the intersection of compute, comms and AI for shaping the future of the Edge.