EQUS Seminar Series: Dr Mohan Baruwal Chhetri and Dr Rebecca Coates

Date: Tuesday 02 July 

Time: 10:00am – 11:00pm AWST, 12:00am -1:00pm AEST

Speakers: Dr Mohan Baruwal Chhetri and Dr Rebecca Coates, CSIRO

Title: Quantum Readiness Across Australian Industry Sectors

Abstract: Quantum technologies hold the potential to profoundly revolutionise our major industries, society, and way of life. While the benefits and progress promised by quantum technologies should be harnessed, it is equally important to identify and mitigate any potential harms and unanticipated consequences. Leading experts on quantum computing and cybersecurity suggest the concept of “quantum readiness” can help industry sectors prepare for the impacts of quantum technologies.  The concept of “quantum readiness” can be applied to industry sectors in two distinct ways. It can refer to the overall state of preparedness of an organisation to effectively utilise and leverage quantum technology. It can refer to the level of quantum cyber readiness that organisations possess to address the cyber security risks and challenges associated with quantum technology. Organisations need to consider both dimensions to position themselves at the forefront of technological advancements, effectively leveraging quantum technologies, and simultaneously mitigating the potential risks posed by the quantum-related cyber security challenges. Our project aims to assess both the overall level of sector preparedness to use quantum technologies, and the level of readiness against the inherent cyber security risks. We use responsible innovation theory to both guide the conduct of the research, and as the impetus for the project. Responsible innovation theory has guided the research design, and guided the construction of a forward-looking research question that encompasses a focus on risk management and future science. In this presentation, we present on the background context of the research, and on two research activities undertaken thus far. First, a desktop mapping exercise where we have documented quantum use cases and mapped them against industry sector to achieve a snapshot of the current state of quantum preparedness in Australia. Second, we present preliminary findings from qualitative interviews with professionals working in the Australian quantum ecosystem. 

Dr. Mohan Baruwal Chhetri is a Senior Research Scientist at CSIRO's Data61, where he leads the Human-Machine Collaboration for Cybersecurity research theme within the Cybersecurity & Quantum Systems Research Group. His expertise lies at the intersection of humans, AI, and cybersecurity. Dr Baruwal Chhetri is passionate about developing intelligent solutions that enhance decision-making in complex cyber-physical-social ecosystems. These solutions range from automating routine tasks to augmenting human capabilities for informed choices in critical situations. He is also interested in exploring the ethical, social, and security implications of emerging technologies, including artificial intelligence, extended reality, and quantum. Dr Baruwal Chhetri's academic background includes a Master of Information Technology (MIT) and a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) from Monash University and Swinburne University of Technology, respectively. Prior to joining CSIRO, he served as a lecturer at Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia. He has published more than 100 academic papers on a range of topics including cybersecurity, self-adaptive and autonomic systems, cloud computing, quality of service (QoS) management, and agent-based systems.

Dr Rebecca Coates is a Sociologist. Her research focus is on the intersection of science, society and technology, with this dynamic explored through the lens of responsible innovation. Her current research interests include applied ethics, particularly in relation to emerging and new technologies, and the public perceptions of responsible innovation. Dr Coates co-leads a multi-disciplinary team on a project about the quantum readiness across Australian industry sectors, funded by CSIRO's Responsible Innovation Future Science Platform (RI FSP), the Quantum Technologies FSP and Data61. She also part of the research team on the longitudinal study on the Public Perceptions of Responsible Innovation. Dr Coates is an alumna of the University of Queensland. Her PhD, co-supervised from within the Institute for Social Science Research and the School of Social Science, contributed to understandings of social stratification in Australian society, with an analysis of the socioeconomic aspirations of high-school students in Queensland. Prior to joining CSIRO, Rebecca taught tertiary quantitative and qualitative social science research methods, and conducted research broadly related to social inequality in Australia, including homelessness research and Indigenous housing research.

Major funding support

Australian Research Council

The Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Engineered Quantum Systems (EQUS) acknowledges the Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and their continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respects to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders past and present.