Chief Data Officer Gary Goldberg named in Top 50 innovators in Data and Analytics UK, 2019

Corinium is the world’s largest community designed to inspire and support the emerging C-Suite executives focused on Data, Analytics, Customer and Digital Innovation.


Can you tell us about your current role?

As Chief Data Officer since January 2015, my role is to establish and deliver the firm's data strategy to support Mizuho's business goals. In practice, this involves building our data science capability, delivering process efficiency and providing governance about how data is used across our business.


What led you to your current role?

My path to data started indirectly - I began my career on the trading floor at an investment bank eventually moving to IT where I could focus on delivering change.

Data was a regular part of my IT deliveries. I saw first-hand how important data was to our business and created new hierarchical data models, data platforms and managed transformational change initiatives which were heavily very data focused.

In 2014, I joined Mizuho as Head of Risk IT and data was again an important topic with data related regulatory programs on the horizon. In 2015, I was asked to transition to my current role as Chief Data Officer with broad responsibility for creating and implementing our data strategy. This is focused on using data to enhance revenue opportunities, find cost efficiencies and ensure regulatory compliance.


Can you describe to us a current project/transformation you are working on?

Two recent changes are worth highlighting.

The Mizuho Data Science Community was established in 2018 with aim of developing machine learning and data analytics capabilities across our business. This is also acting as a catalyst for creative data science projects.

The other initiative is the European Banking and Regulator Data Forum (EBRDF) which I formed in early 2018 with the support of the Enterprise Data Management Council and PwC. The EBRDF is a forum for banks and regulators to work collaboratively on data issues common to the Financial Services industry. The current focus of the group is to establish clear, granular data standards to improve the quality and efficiency of regulatory reporting.


What were the key relationships that mattered most? What were the key sources of support or resistance you encountered?

The support from the senior management team was critical. They needed to understand the value that the Data Office would provide to Mizuho. Our COO has been fundamental in helping to making the business case for data and analytics. He has been a huge supporter of the work.

There is a lot of interest in using data strategically and data science initiatives. The biggest resistance that I've encountered has simply been with competing priorities. In a fast moving and busy business environment, time can often be the most precious commodity.


What did you learn from this project?

When I set up the Data Science Community, 13% of the company signed up. I was pleasantly surprised by that level of interest. As the community was established, we identified analytics and data science skills hidden across our business. Now we have another outlet for them to use those skills.


What excites you most about the future?

The possibilities! Working in data is a privileged position as we see across all business functions and business processes. That offers numerous opportunities to serve our customers better and help our business grow.


If you could give one piece of advice to someone looking to start a career in data & analytics, what would it be?

Understand the business, their goals and problems. Having strong modelling skills is so much more valuable if you can apply that effectively with strong domain knowledge.


What is the best movie you have watched this year?

The Darkest Hour


Read more about what we do at Mizuho EMEA >

View the Corinium's Top 50 >

Gary on DataIQ 100 >