The Computing Research and Education Association of Australasia (CORE) is an association of university departments of computer science, software engineering and information technology in Australia and New Zealand. Every one or two years CORE makes a range of awards, and this year’s John Hughes Distinguished Service Award goes to Steve MacDonell from Auckland University of Technology and the University of Otago.
Steve has made notable contributions through leadership in education and research and through CORE, IT Professionals NZ and other bodies that are essential to the quality of education, research and professionalism in computing in New Zealand and Australia. He helped establish the foundations of software engineering research as a recognised discipline in New Zealand, being a founding member and Deputy Chair of Software Innovation New Zealand, contributing to the professional and educational foundations of software engineering through his own research and teaching, and helping define its internationally regarded body of knowledge, SWEBOK. He has lobbied for and provided policy in government circles for funding computing research, and co-led a CORE submission on challenges to ICT funding in Australia and New Zealand. Since 2016 he has been Theme Leader: Data Science & Digital Technologies, and more recently Deputy Director, of the ten-year Science for Technological Innovation National Science Challenge. Through these roles he is helping to deliver on the Challenge’s mission to enhance New Zealand’s capacity to use physical sciences and engineering for economic growth and prosperity.
Steve has been instrumental in establishing professional accreditation for IT education programs in New Zealand as founding Chair of the Seoul Accord Accreditation Board of IT Professionals NZ. He has been a significant contributor to the CORE ranking of conferences and journals, with benefit to the standing of the disciplines of computing and information systems academics and researchers and their home universities, across Australia and New Zealand.