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Dr. Tim Fountaine

Senior PartnerSydney

Helps public and private organizations with their most important strategic, operational, and technology-related issues

Tim has more than 15 years’ experience working with institutions in Australia, Asia, America, and Europe on their most important strategic, operational, and technology-related issues. He established QuantumBlack, AI by McKinsey, in Asia in 2016 and is passionate about ensuring organizations are equipped to thrive in a world increasingly shaped by AI and digital technology.

His work spans financial services, retail, mining, technology, defense, and healthcare, with recent examples including:

  • working with a national government department to build a digital ten-year planning system that coordinates the work of hundreds of people
  • supporting one of the largest healthcare organizations in Asia for over ten years to improve care for people with chronic diseases, as well as implement other improvement programs
  • working with a multinational retailer to define its strategy and implement a digital and technology program to transform the company’s omnichannel capabilities
  • helping a global bank with its customer personalization, customer lifetime value, and data programs to improve satisfaction and retention
  • supporting a three-year public health program, which included analyzing claims data to inform hundreds of recommendations to improve healthcare access, quality, and affordability for citizens
  • running a five-year trial of different models of funding and digitalization of healthcare for people with chronic conditions for a national government
  • designing and building an advanced analytics center of excellence for a multinational retail company
  • building an AI sailor with reinforcement learning to help a world-class sailing team defend the oldest trophy in international sport, the America’s Cup
  • Supporting a global mining company with a multi-year technology-enabled transformation of its operations
  • Implementing AI-driven plant set point advisory systems with multiple mining and energy companies, to improve yield, throughput and energy efficiency

Tim is on the board of the George Institute for Global Health and chairs the board of the Digital Science Initiative at the University of Sydney.

Tim’s perspectives have been published multiple times in Harvard Business Review, and his article “Building the AI-Powered Organization” was featured in the magazine’s “10 Must Reads on Leading Digital Transformation” list.

Tim has a PhD in neuroscience from the University of Oxford and a medical degree from the University of Auckland.

When not working, Tim can be found on the tennis court, at the beach, or in the park with his young family.

Published work

A better way to put your data to work,” Harvard Business Review, July-August 2022

How to unlock the full value of data? Manage it like a product,” McKinsey & Company, June 2022

Getting AI to scale,” Harvard Business Review, May-June 2021

Four steps in unlocking the value of data in Australian industrial organizations,” McKinsey & Company, May 2021

Reimagining your business for AI,” McKinsey & Company, April 2021

Getting to scale with artificial intelligence,” McKinsey & Company, November 2019

Building the AI-powered organization,” Harvard Business Review, July-August 2019

What it really takes to scale artificial intelligence,” McKinsey & Company, June 2019


Queen’s College, University of Oxford
PhD, neuroscience (Commonwealth Scholar)

University of Auckland
BS, human biology