In November 2015, the City of Toronto partnered with IT World Canada (ITWC) to bring together a group of business, community and city leaders to discuss and discover what this new IoT era means for our city, its businesses and municipal government. In an extensive interactive discussion the group explored why business and government leaders need to consider IoT as they plan their strategies and seek to grow and transform business operations.
We’ve kept a record of that conversation on this site. It covers IoT innovations happening right here in our City and how businesses are rethinking what’s possible and creating new platforms for success. Articles, social media conversation and even a new video celebrating Toronto being named the “Intelligent Community of the Year” in 2015.
As IoT solutions gain momentum, businesses are entering a new reality where futuristic ideas come to life. ‘Smart’ businesses and cities are leveraging IoT technologies in order to automate processes, simplify operations, and get more done in less time.
Use cases to be discussed:
• Fleet management
• Weather cameras
• Wireless traffic lights
• Remote monitoring of storm water systems.
Why / how IoT transforms businesses and enhances competitiveness. A look at how specific industries have been impacted.
Leveraging Open Data to achieve synergy. How does this lead to innovation? Identification of real obstacles and issues.
What’s happening related to the IoT in the “entrepreneurial” space? How are enterprises innovating? How are companies leveraging IoT.
How the government is leveraging IoT. What the industry needs from government and what government needs from its citizens and business leaders. Why this collaboration matters.
President and Group Publisher, ITWC
With an extensive background in the media/publishing industry, Fawn Annan is the President of Canada's leading technology news publisher. Media properties include: CanadianCIO, ComputerDealer News, ITBusiness, CSO Digital, and Direction Informatique.
Annan’s background includes having run her own business and working for companies such as Microsoft, and HP, attaining progressively senior roles with responsibilities for sales, marketing, and strategy. She joined ITWC (formerly IT World Canada) in 2001 and became President in 2010. She currently sits on various boards, including ITAC Ontario, CATA iCanada, and CATAWIT, and the Canadian Channel Chiefs Association. Annan also holds a volunteer role as Ontario Lead for Crowdfunding/iCanada and works on two strategic committees for the IAB (Interactive Advertising Bureau) helping to shape Canada’s recommendations for digital policies. In 2012, she received the Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee Award from the Office of the Governor General of Canada and CATA in recognition of her contributions to strengthening a vital area of Canadian life.
Vice-President, Corporate and Government Affairs, Huawei Canada
Scott Bradley is Vice-President of Corporate and Government Affairs at Huawei Canada. Since joining Huawei Canada in 2011, Scott has helped lead Huawei’s emergence as a key contributor to Canada’s ICT and telecommunications industries. Scott manages all external-facing corporate functions for the organization, including brand development, public affairs, marketing communications and government relations.
Executive Director, Municipal Licensing and Standards Division, City of Toronto
Tracey Cook was a Police Officer in Toronto for over 18 years and left to pursue executive roles within the private sector. In 2012, Tracey returned to public service as Executive Director of the Municipal Licensing and Standards Division for the City of Toronto. Tracey has overseen significant policy and regulatory initiatives, including a new regulatory regime for street food and the ongoing review of ground transportation providers. In October 2015, she hosted a Sharing Economy forum in Toronto to discuss the role of government in this evolution of industries.
Team Lead & Policy Advisor, Ministry of Economic Development, ON
Vasu Daggupaty is the Team Lead for the ICT & Financial Services group with the Investment and Industry Divison of Ontario’s Ministry of Economic Development. In this role, Vasu provides timely, expert advice to government officials on the ICT and Financial Services sectors. He has negotiated, finalized and executed contract agreements for government support of major employment and R&D projects in Ontario and directs strategy development and policy research.
He has led sector studies on the Connected Car, Mobile Payments and Quantum Computing. The team is currently in engaged in research on the Internet of Things. Vasu mentors students from the University of Waterloo’s Master of Public Service and University of Toronto’s Master of Global Affairs programs and is the Ministry’s representative in the nationally-funded Creating Digital Opportunity research partnership.
Prior to his time with the Ontario government, Vasu worked for global technology research firm IDC, managing 6 research programs and speaking on technology issues across Canada.
A Toronto native, Vasu graduated from the University of Waterloo with a degree in Systems Design Engineering, and also obtained a Graduate Diploma in Economics from the University of Cambridge and a Master of Public Affairs from Sciences Po-Paris.
In his spare time, Vasu serves as a coach in the high-octane world of under-8 boys soccer.
Director, Policy and Partnerships Open Government Office Treasury Board Secretariat, ON
Brian Fior is leading the implementation of the Ontario government’s Open Government Strategy as the Director of the Open Government Office at Treasury Board Secretariat. In this role he is working to provide access to high-value data and information that supports innovation and strengthens public policy – and testing new public engagement methods to involve Ontarians in decisions regarding the issues that impact their lives
Previously, as Director, Corporate HR Strategy & Policy, Brian was responsible for leading the design, development and communication of HR strategies and policies for the Ontario Public Service -- and leveraging human capital analytics for planning and decision-making.
Brian is proud to be known as a leader who places a high priority on fostering an inclusive and accessible workplace and he has received enterprise recognition for leadership excellence.
Brian is a graduate of the Ivey Executive Program at the University of Western Ontario; he possesses a Bachelor of Social Sciences from the University of Ottawa, and a Masters Certificate in Public Management from the Schulich School of Business, York University.
CTO, Americas international
Tracy Fleming is the CTO theater lead for Americas international, reporting into the Office of the CTO for Avaya. Focused on driving thought leadership around emerging technologies and contextual collaboration. Working with strategic customers, partners and consultants to evangelize emerging technology models and map to business requirements. Tracy has been in the forefront of Avaya Aura from its inception over four years ago. Tracy is also is responsible for providing customer requirements internally to various product organizations within Avaya. Previously, Tracy held a position as UC Practice Lead, Avaya Canada. Prior to Avaya, Tracy was Director of IS/IT for a subsidiary of Bell Canada. Tracy's educational background is in Business Administration with a major in marketing.
Corporate Director, Information Technology, Dundee Precious Metals
With an extensive background in information technology of almost twenty years, Mark Gelsomini is the Corporate Director, Information Technology at Dundee Precious Metals. He first joined the firm in 2008 as Corporate Manager, Information Technology, and has held progressively senior positions, all the while being actively involved in helping the company leverage the Internet of Things. Dundee Precious Metals has been recognized by media such as the Wall Street Journal as a as a leading example of how IT can propel business forward.
Mark Gelsomini is a Computer Engineer and holds numerous industry patents.
Managing Director, OneEleven
OneEleven is focused on building a community of high potential, data-driven entrepreneurs by providing them with the resources and support to scale their technologies.
Previous to this Bilal acted as the Director of Policy and Senior Advisor to three consecutive Ministers of Economic Development, Trade and Innovation for the Province of Ontario, where he was responsible for establishing and implementing policies to help advance Ontario’s economy. A lawyer by profession, Bilal spent his early career practicing corporate and securities law, first at a full-service business law firm, then as legal counsel to a multi-national financial institution. Early in his career Bilal worked with the United Nations on a project focused on corporate social responsibility. He currently serves on the Board of Directors at the Canadian Club of Toronto.
Mark Gelsomini is a Computer Engineer and holds numerous industry patents.
Chief Planner & Executive Director, City of Toronto
As Chief Planner for the City of Toronto, Jennifer is committed to creating places where people flourish. Over the past decade Jennifer has been repeatedly recognized by the Canadian Institute of Planners and OPPI for her innovative work in Canadian municipalities. Most recently, Jennifer was named as one of the most influential people in Toronto by Toronto Life magazine and one of the most powerful people in Canada by MacLeans Magazine.
Her planning practice is characterized by an emphasis on collaborations across sectors, and broad engagement with municipal staff, councils, developers, business leaders, NGO's and residents associations. Her priorities include implementing a divisional strategic plan, leading an Official Plan review process, refining public consultation to provide more access to city building conversations, a renewed focus on evidence based transit planning, midrise development on the City of Toronto's many avenues, and overseeing development review for over 4000 applications annually.
Jennifer is the founder of Project Walk, which premiered its first short film in 2011, as an official selection at the TIFF. In 2012 Jennifer debuted her first TED talk, Walk to School and in 2013 she delivered her second, Own Your City. Jennifer is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario (combined honours English and Philosophy) and has a Master in Environmental Studies (Politics and Planning) from York University.
Operational Support Command, Toronto Police Service
Ritesh Kotak, who resides in Toronto, Canada, has been researching and providing training in the areas of social media analytics, cybercrime, internet investigations, emerging technologies and collaboration to both the public and private sector. His continued research and innovations within law enforcement in these areas have been recognized nationally and internationally.
Ritesh was the Co-Creator and Project Coordinator of Operation Reboot, which was a Toronto Police Service (TPS) initiative addressing cybercrime, internet investigations, technology procurement and cyber related threats to the Service. He is also the Project Lead for the development of the TPS Mobile App.
Ritesh holds a degree in Business Administration from the University of Toronto. Furthermore, he has completed courses from the Canadian Police College (RCMP) and the Toronto Police College. Throughout the years, Ritesh has garnered many accolades and has appeared in mainstream media several times to discuss Social/Cyber/Digital issues.
CIO and Chief Content Officer, ITWC
Corporate strategist, marketing consultant, technology guru, internet pioneer, teacher, broadcaster, author and speaker – over a 35-year career Jim has consistently been on the leading edge of technology-enabled business transformation. From start-ups to Fortune 100 companies, to not-for-profits and governments in Canada and internationally, Jim’s experience has been invaluable to those who are trying to make the changes necessary to compete in the new digital economy.
Vice President, Oxford Properties Group
Lachlan MacQuarrie has 15+ years of real estate experience, primarily focused in investments, development and asset management. Lachlan leads the National Programs team at Oxford Properties - focusing on the delivery of best in class efficiency, expertise and governance across all asset classes within Oxford, along functional areas that impact energy, sustainability, emergency and security management, technical operations / preventive maintenance and SMART buildings, national procurement, customer service and Oxford’s leading customer service platform, 310-Maxx.
Engineering Group Manager – Connected Vehicle and HMI Advanced Technology - General Motors
Shaun Marshall is currently the Engineering Group Manager – Connected Vehicle and HMI Advanced Technology at General Motors’ Canadian Engineering Centre in Oshawa, Ontario. Shaun has been responsible for managing advanced engineering and innovation in the areas of vehicle electrification, energy storage systems, vehicle controls and hybrid diagnostics through various assignments since 2009. In these roles he has been responsible for bringing innovative new technologies to GM’s vehicles. Shaun brings 25+ years of expertise in vehicle electrical systems, telecommunications, and radio frequency engineering. From 2007 through 2009, Shaun held the role of Engineering Group Manager Electrical Systems, Software and Controls at the GM Technical Centre – India in Bangalore. He grew that team from 23 to 130 engineers in just over 2 years and enabled the transfer of global ownership for Body Control Module and Instrument Panel Cluster software from North America and Europe to India. Prior to his India assignment, Shaun was Engineering Group Manager- Electrical Systems at the Canadian Regional Engineering Centre. He was responsible for Vehicle Program Team and Subsystem Management Team interface as well as management of wiring, electrical architecture, electrical analysis, electrical issue resolution team and mule vehicle engineering for North American vehicle programs including the Theta architecture vehicle variants in gas, hybrid and fuel cell propulsion systems. Shaun was the Lead Electrical Architecture Engineer and Designing Engineer at the Canadian Regional Engineering Centre where he executed their first Canadian full-vehicle electrical program, supported the development of their first electrical vehicle system bench and engineered CNG Alternative Fuel vehicles. His experience includes interaction with Global partners at the engineering centres and manufacturing facilities in Korea, China, Europe, Australia, Mexico, India and the United States of America. Shaun has been part of the General Motors of Canada Limited since 1999.
Shaun’s career prior to joining GM includes wireless communications as an RF and Network Engineer designing and deploying a national LMCS/LMDS network of “wireless” fiber-optics for Maxlink Communications; deployment of cellular networks and base stations for Bell Mobility in Toronto, and; Regional Environmental Officer, Facilities Systems Engineer and Electronic Systems Engineer supporting radar, navigation, communication systems and facilities at Transport Canada in Air Navigation.
Shaun graduated in 1990 with a Bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering from Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, and received a Master of Science in Engineering Science - Management of Technology in 2004 from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY. Shaun has been a licensed professional engineer with Professional Engineers Ontario since 1996.
Director of Channel Sales North East U.S & Canada, EQUINIX
With over 15 years in the IT industry, Alano is currently the Director of Channel Sales for Equinix (a fairly new entrant to the Canadian marketplace, Equinix is the world's largest IBX data center and colocation provider). His responsibilities include building a strong channel team, developing strategic relationships, and ensuring customer needs and requirements are met through the effective management of national and global accounts, territory and resources, while also achieving revenue and market share goals.
With specific expertise in cloud computing, storage solution architecture, data center design and architecture, big data analytics, OLT, data warehousing, and network architecture and design, Alano works with partner organizations to solve clients’ challenges and provide effective solutions.
Previously to Equinix, Alano held progressively senior levels roles with Hewlett Packard,including Microsoft HP alliance manager for Canada; Director of public sector accounts; and Director of networking.
CIO, City of Toronto
Rob Meikle is the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the City of Toronto. In his role asCIO,Rob provides visionary leadership for the delivery of flexible and integrated information and communication technology solutions that enable and drive Service Excellence.
Rob is a strategic business leader who is innovative and results driven with a proven track record of 20+ years’ experience planning, developing, and implementing award winning global business and technology solutions in the private, public and not for profit sector. Rob was twice named a global CIO 100 Honoree and Computerworld's 2013 Premier 100 IT Leader.
Prior to the City of Toronto Rob was the Chief Information Officer at the City of Brampton and has held various leadership roles in the private sector including Global Operations, Customer Service, Marketing, eBusiness and Information Technology.
CEO, Achilles Media/CiX Canadian Innovation Exchange
Robert Montgomery is an entrepreneur, investor and adviser focused on the digital media and information technology industries. Robert is CEO of business-to-business media and facilitation company Achilles Media as well as investment company First Maximilian Associates. Robert's prior positions include: Co-Founder and Partner at Achilles Partners in Toronto and New York, an investment and advisory firm; President, Americas at the Fantastic Corporation in San Francisco, a broadband software company; Co-Founder and Chairman of Media Content plc in London, a media rights company; Managing Director for Europe and Asia Pacific at research and consulting firm Kagan World Media in London; co-founder of Digital Media International and Managing Director for Euromoney plc, and what is now Informa plc, all business to business media companies in London. Robert serves on several boards as well as the past Chair of the Board of Governors of the Ontario College of Art and Design.
Deputy CIO, City of Toronto
Lan Nguyen is the Deputy Chief Information Officer for the City of Toronto responsible for Enterprise Solutions Delivery, supporting public service delivery and operations to a diverse portfolio of 44 city business divisions.
Her current mandates at the city also include creating business value through business transformation, citizen engagement and open government to enable city service delivery to be more accessible, flexible and responsive to customers and public needs.
Prior to the working for the City of Toronto, Lan was the CIO/ Vice President of Innovations and Partnerships at Centennial College where she helped establish a new IT strategy and governance to direct IT investment priorities toward student services improvement and academic competitive advantage. She was instrumental in developing many of Centennial's successful strategic partnerships with the IT industry which opened opportunities to enhance the College’s learning and teaching environment.
Lan has also held various IT leadership roles in the Ontario Government and private sectors. She has a Bachelor of Commerce from McGill University, an Executive MBA from University of Toronto, Rotman School of Management and isa graduate of the Executive Public Administration program from Queen's University.
CEO, SensorSuite Inc.
Internet and Technology executive with over 15 years of experience, including founding multiple startups, product development, software/hardware development, business operations, and strategy.
Robert has always been fascinated with hardware/software interactions and how software can affect things in the real world, and is sharing that interest with the Toronto community by organizing IOToronto.org Meetup group (meetup.com/iotoronto)
Robert merged his passion for entrepreneurship and internet technology, and is currently CEO and Founder at SensorSuite Inc., a leading edge Internet of Things company empowering executives and property managers with real-time sensor analytics within their buildings.
Vice President of Business Wireless, Radio & Paging, Bell Mobility
Gary has the responsibility for Bell’s National Wireless Business. Prior to his current role, Gary was Vice President of National Retail, Bell Mobility and prior to that he was Vice-President of Sales for Bell Wholesale. He has also held several senior positions with the Bell Enterprise Sales Group, including managing relationships with Bell’s largest banking, financial services and insurance customers.
Prior to joining Bell Canada 2002, Gary held various positions at several multinational IT Services firms. Previous roles and responsibilities included Web Services Sales & Marketing, Networking Hardware Sales & Services.
With over 10 years experience selling complex IT solutions, Gary’s areas of expertise span a broad range of functional IT and business solutions, including voice and data telecom, network infrastructure, applications hosting, disaster recovery and business continuity services and ISP solutions. Gary has participated in various executive programs at the Wharton School of Business.
Born and raised in Southern Ontario, Gary attended Wilfrid Laurier University, where he obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration (Honours) degree. He is also a past Chairman of Transitions for Youth, a not-for-profit organization offering support to vulnerable and at risk children, youth and their families. Gary lives in Oakville, Ontario, with his wife and two children.
Partner, Blackline Consulting
Ian has been assisting clients apply innovative technology to improve their business operations for over 20 years. He is a partner in Blackline Consulting where he drives the company's unique approach to delivering high-value consulting services that help clients make material improvements to how they work. He is a published thought leader and speaker on innovative technologies including the impact of mobile, evolution of payments, cost optimization and securing the power of LEAN.
General Manager, Economic Development & Culture Division City of Toronto
Mike joined the City of Toronto in 2009. His main responsibilities include the implementation of the City’s Economic Development Strategy, Collaborating for Competitiveness, and its Culture Plan, Creative Capital Gains. He also sits on the boards of a number of local agencies connected to the City of Toronto, and in a volunteer capacity, the board of George Brown College. Mike has spent the majority of his career in general management, research, marketing and consulting, locally and internationally.
Mike has an M.A. in Urban Geography and is a Certified Management Consultant (C.M.C.).
Director, Microsoft CityNext - Microsoft Corporation
Kathryn Willson is the Program Director for Microsoft CityNext – an initiative to empower more sustainable, prosperous, and economically competitive cities. Kat brings to this effort 20 years of experience in enterprise software, including solutions for IT infrastructure, business intelligence, security and energy-smart cities. Prior to her career at Microsoft, Kat worked at as a licensed Architect in the state of California. She earned both of her BA and MBA degrees from the University of California at Berkeley.
VP Innovation - Technology & Operations, RBC
Gabriel is Vice President of Innovation in the Technology & Operations group at RBC, leading a team whose mandate is to drive RBC’s innovation agenda through internal R&D, external partnerships and engagement in the broader technology and startup communities. Prior to this role, Gabriel was the Managing Director in RBC’s Enterprise Strategy group, where he worked closely with senior management in developing RBC’s overall enterprise strategy. Gabriel also played a key role in providing strategic input into the identification and evaluation of RBC’s corporate development activities.
Prior to joining RBC in 2012, Gabriel was with UBS Investment Bank in Hong Kong, responsible for strategic change management across UBS’s Asia Pacific footprint. Before UBS, Gabriel was a consultant for McKinsey and Company, based out of the Toronto and later the Hong Kong office, advising clients across Canada, US, UK, Hong Kong and southeast Asia.
Gabriel is an Electrical Engineer, with a Bachelor in Engineering Science from University of Toronto and a Master in Management Science and Engineering from Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. He and his wife currently live in Toronto with their two young daughters.
Subject to change. Current as of November 12, 2015.
As IoT solutions gain momentum, businesses are entering a new reality where futuristic ideas come to life. ‘Smart’ businesses and cities are leveraging IoT technologies in order to automate processes, simplify operations, and get more done in less time. This session will focus on how municipalities are leveraging the Internet of Things today.
Use cases to be discussed:
· Fleet management
· Weather cameras
· Wireless traffic lights
· Remote monitoring of storm water systems..
IoT is lauded as a game changer, yet many organizations are not yet cognizant of the power it holds. This panel discussion will explore the promise and realities of IoT and provide real-life examples of how IoT is fundamentally altering everything we know about how we work and deliver services and products. Participants will learn about how different businesses are not only recognizing how IoT can be leveraged, but how these organizations have gone about implementing and leveraging it and what some of the key results have been. Learn through case studies why IoT will drive competitive advantage.
As businesses and citizens, we seek openness and sharing of information from our governments and leaders. The promise of Open Data extends beyond the mere exchange of information but can serve to achieve synergy and underscore continued transparency and engagement. This panel discussion will look at what different levels of government are doing and how Open Data can foster and lead to innovation. In addition, participants will learn about the all-too-real obstacles that hinder its use, and the very real opportunities going forward.
There has been a lot of buzz about the Internet of Things over the past few years and the vast opportunities it will bring to both commercial and public sector organizations. No doubt the promised value of IoT is exciting and compelling, but how do you make it relevant to your business or community today? What challenges will you face and what risks will you need to manage to start realizing that promise? This session will provide an overview of current trends in the IoT market, opportunities for insight and value creation from the infrastructure you have in place today, and challenges from a business, policy and governance perspective.
Toronto is home to one of the largest technology clusters in North America and a hotbed of innovation. The sector consists of a flourishing entrepreneurial base comprised of incubators and startup associations, together with the public and private organizations that that help fund them, through to large technology companies and other businesses that are actively pursuing R&D, developing and implementing emerging technologies.
This panel session will explore who the innovators are and what they are doing. Additionally, with a balance of panelists representing innovators in all sizes of companies, the panelists will delve into how organizations can ignite innovation and some of the challenges faced in both innovating and adopting innovation.
Municipal governments continue to evolve the ways in which they support and provide a strong quality of life for their citizens, adopting and leveraging new technologies, restructuring as Smart Cities, and continuously seeking to meet overarching social, economic and environmental needs.
This panel discussion will focus on how Toronto is moving forward. How will Toronto's government leverage things such as the Internet of Things, foster and spawn innovation, and ensure a sustainable urban fabric and effective growth model for the City? It will engage participants in a dialogue on what the industry needs from government and what government needs from its citizens and business leaders, and why this collaboration matters.