Dr. Foteini Agrafioti

Keynote Speaker

Foteini is the VP, Research and Innovation at Architech, an innovation accelerator for enterprise, where she is responsible for the company’s intellectual property portfolio. Prior to that she was a founding partner and CTO at Nymi Inc. Foteini is one of the inventors of the Nymi wristband and HeartID authentication technology.  She is a TED speaker, serves on the editorial review boards of several scientific journals, and was named “Inventor of the Year” in 2012 at the University of Toronto where she received the PhD degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Click here for details on her keynote address



Zach Aysan

Workshop Speaker

A successful entrepreneur in a previous life, he breathes data. When he is not busy optimizing algorithms he can be found experimenting with cryptocurrencies.

Click here for details on his workshop address

Nicole Bogart

Moderator, Privacy Panel

Nicole Bogart is the technology reporter for Global News national website, based in Toronto. In addition to covering issues like consumer trends and online security for the website, Nicole also serves as an on-air tech expert for Global News shows including The Morning Show and The News at Noon (Toronto).

Hagan Carlile

FUTURE15 Talks Speaker

Hagan Carlile is president of transmedia consultancy MysteryBox Media Inc.. Hagan is an award-winning Creative Director, Visual Designer and Advanced Media Producer with a broad range of experience that spans software design, content development, post-production, visual effects and marketing. Hagan has a highly specialized track record in digital acquisition, projection technologies and content creation.

Pearl Chen

Future15 Talks Speaker

From HTML to LEDs, Android to Arduino — Pearl Chen takes a cross-disciplinary approach to her work. As both an educator and developer, Pearl has worked with Intel, Google, TELUS, Ladies Learning Code, CFC Media Lab, and Samsung.

Nastaran Dadashi

FUTURE15 Talks Speaker

Nastaran Dadashi is a researcher, consultant and professor. She has experience in the collection of user requirements and Human Factors design principles.  Nastaran’s PhD, Human Factors of Intelligent Infrastructure, focused on adapting a cognitive approach to the design and understanding of complex multi-agent systems within socio-technical environments. Nastaran holds a BSc in Computing and Information Systems and a MSc in Interactive Systems Design; she is a Chartered Ergonomist and Human Factors specialist, main track committee member of IEEE International Conference on Systems, Man and Cybernetics (Since 2013) and an Associate RRI (Responsible Research and Innovation) in ICT.

Jason Della Rocca

Future15 Talks Keynote Speaker

Jason Della Rocca is the co-founder of Execution Labs, a first-of-its kind accelerator and investment platform for independent game developers. Formerly, Jason was a game industry consultant focused on business and cluster development, working with game studios and organizations all over the world. Prior, he served as the executive director of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA) for nearly nine years, and was honored for his industry building efforts with the inaugural Ambassador Award at the Game Developers Conference. In 2009, Jason was named to Game Developer Magazine’s “Power 50,” a list which profiles 50 of the most important contributors to the state of the game industry.

Anthony Di Iorio

Panelist, Digital Currency Panel

Anthony is the CEO and Founder of Decentral, a business development center and home to tech startups and innovative entrepreneurs that focus on disruptive and decentralized technologies. He is a co-founder of the Ethereum Project, a platform and a programming language that makes it possible for any developer to build and publish next generation distributed applications.  Anthony is a founding member of the Global Bitcoin Alliance and the Bitcoin Alliance of Canada, an association dedicated to raising awareness of Bitcoin. He co-founded KryptoKit extension, a Bitcoin wallet available as a browser extension and to be released as an app in early 2015.

Mike Gibson

Future15 Talks Speaker

Mike is an expert UAV pilot specializing in remote-controlled aerial cinematography. He was ranked #1 quadcopter pilot in Canada and 6th in the world in 2012. Michael combines his passion for UAVs with a proven track record in sales and marketing to enhance Industrial SkyWorks’ sales team.

Trevor Haldenby

FUTURE15 Talks Speaker

Trevor Haldenby is the imaginative thinker who focuses emerging technologies on exciting ideas. He has worked as interactive producer and design consultant on a diverse array of digital projects: including the popular virtual world Habbo Hotel, and Earth Rangers’ Bring Back The Wild campaign. He has presented and performed at TED, the World Future Society Conference, Autodesk University, Merging Media, DIY Days, TEDx OCADU, and the CBC.

Lynne Heller

FUTURE15 Talks Speaker

Lynne Heller is a Canadian post­-disciplinary artist and educator. Her interests encompass material culture, new media performative interaction, graphic novels and sculptural installation. Lynne has exhibited globally in Australia, United States, UK, Japan and Cuba. Her work has been included in both public and private collections. She has been the recipient of numerous awards from the Ontario Arts Council and Canada Council. Lynee completed her MFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2004 and is a sessional instructor and researcher at the OCAD University.

Matt Humphreys


Matt is the Senior Project Manager at T4GKICK, a digital marketing agency, in Toronto, and is also a professor of User Experience Design at George Brown College. Matt is a professional musician and lead singer of Saturday Night Superstars and you may recognize him as a former contestant on the premiere of Canadian Idol 2003.

Jesse Hirsh

Moderator, Digital Currency Panel

Jesse Hirsh is an internet strategist, researcher, and broadcaster based in Toronto. He has a weekly nationally syndicated column on CBC radio explaining and analyzing the latest trends and developments in technology. He owns and operates Metaviews Media Management Ltd., which focuses on research and consulting around new media business models, big data, and the strategic use of social media. Jesse is also a co-founder of the Academy of the Impossible, a peer to peer lifelong learning facility. Educated at the McLuhan Program at the University of Toronto, his passion is educating people on the potential benefits and perils of technology.

Lynn Hughes

FUTURE15 Talks Speaker

Lynn Hughes’s educational background includes degrees in Art and English Literature and in the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology, with a concentration in the History and Philosophy of Mathematics. She currently holds the Research Chair in Interaction Design and Games Innovation at Concordia University. She founded with Bart Simon (Sociology, Concordia) the Technoculture, Art and Games (TAG) Research Centre at Concordia.

Nandini Jolly

Panelist, Privacy Panel

In founding CryptoMill Technologies Inc., Nandini Jolly foresaw the development of security solutions to tackle both external and internal threats to confidential, sensitive and personal information. Ms. Jolly is also President and CEO of CryptoMill, a company that provides advanced, innovative data security solutions for enterprises, small and medium-sized businesses as well as individual consumers. Her vision is to deliver security that, by design, is simple and usable for the end user.  Ms. Jolly’s accomplishments in business and scholarship are widely recognized. In 2013, she was named as one of Canada’s 100 Most Powerful Women by WXN.  Nandini received her Masters in International Finance and a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the London Business School, England. Ms. Jolly is a frequent speaker on security and privacy.

Felix Kubin

International Speaker

Felix Kubin is an electronic musician and performer. He has been involved with music since he was 8 years old, when he studied piano, organ and glockenspiel. He studied design, sound installation, animation and video. A love child of the home recording era, his activities include futuristic pop, noise, animation films, experimental broadcasting, radio plays, electroacoustic music, and he works for chamber orchestra. Kubin founded his own label “Gagarin Records” in 1998. In the last 20 years, he has released a diverse array of albums and played over 80 electronic music festivals.

Photographed by Roger Deckker for the Wire

Dr. Arthur Kroker & Marilouise Kroker

Meet the Media Guru / Keynote Speakers

Dr. Arthur Kroker is Canada Research Chair in Technology, Culture and Theory and Professor of Political Science at the University of Victoria. His most recent books include Body Drift: Butler, Hayles, Haraway, Born Again Ideology, The Will to Technology and, with Marilouise Kroker, the edited anthology Critical Digital Studies: A Reader. His books and essays have been widely translated in many languages, including French, German, Italian, Japanese, Russian, Chinese, Portuguese, and Slovenian. He is Director of the Pacific Centre for Technology and Culture at the University of Victoria ( as well as co-editor with Marilouise Kroker of the influential scholarly electronic journal CTheory (

Marilouise Kroker is Senior Research Scholar at the Pacific Centre for Technology and Culture, University of Victoria. She is the author with Arthur Kroker of Hacking the Future. She has co-edited and introduced numerous anthologies including Critical Digital Studies: A Reader, Digital Delirium, Body Invaders, and The Last Sex. In addition, Marilouise Kroker has performed and written texts for a series of videos by the video artist/musician, Jackson 2bears, including Code Drift, Life by Computer, Slow Suicide and, most recently with Arthur Kroker, After the Drones.

Benoît Labourdette

International Speaker, Drone Workshop Leader

Benoît Labourdette is a digital storyteller and founder of the new media production company, Quidam. Benoît writes and produces feature films, documentaries, and experimental works. He founded and directed the Pocket Films Festival and is currently the head of the Cameras Mobiles Festival in France. Benoît teaches broadcasting and training for new media technologies, and is an expert in digital cinema and video techniques. He is one of the french “drone artists” and has set up several drone projects in 2014 with Pompidou Center Museum in Paris.

Dr. Steve Mann

Keynote Speaker & 2015 Digital Pioneer Award Recipient

Meet the “Father of Wearable Computing”, Steve Mann, whose work as an artist, scientist, designer, and inventor made Toronto the world’s epicentre of wearable technologies back in the 1980s. In 1992 Mann took this invention from Toronto to Massachusetts Institute of Technology, founding the MIT Media Lab’s Wearable Computing project as its first member. In the words of the Lab’s founding Director, Nicholas Negroponte: “Steve Mann is the perfect example of someone… who persisted in his vision and ended up founding a new discipline.”.  Some of Mann’s other inventions include HDR (High Dynamic Range) Imaging, now used in nearly every commercially manufactured camera, and the EyeTap Digital Eye Glass. Recently, Steve, with Meta successfully raised US$23 million in funding.  He received his PhD from MIT in 1997 and then returned to Toronto in 1998 where he is now a tenured full professor at the University of Toronto in Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Dr. Steve Mann is the 2015 Digifest Digital Pioneer Award winner. His contributions to digital culture are numerous. Learn more about his extensive work, and the Digifest Digital Pioneer Award.

Brian Pullen

FUUTRE15 Keynote Speaker & Workshop Speaker

Brian Pullen is a designer and entrepreneur living and working in Toronto, Canada. He has been creative director of more than 200 digital projects, ranging from websites to apps and games. Recent clients include Playstation, Random House, Rogers, Corus, Canada Goose, Grammys, Nickelodeon, Kobo, Hasbro  and Sony Pictures.  Prior to joining TWG, Brian was co-founder and CEO of award-winning digital agency Playground Inc. Throughout his career he has led businesses in establishing; processes,business models, design philosophies, management structures and digital strategy. Brian has also been a design and product advisor to more than 50 startups, and to a number of accelerator programs across North America.  When he is not building something, Brian can often be found researching, writing or speaking about design, technology and management.

Dr. Christopher Parsons

Panelist, Privacy Panel

Dr. Christopher Parsons received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from the University of Guelph, and his Ph.D from the University of Victoria. He is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Citizen Lab, in the Munk School of Global Affairs with the University of Toronto as well as the Managing Director of the Telecom Transparency Project at the Citizen Lab. Dr. Parsons’ research focuses on how privacy is affected by digitally mediated surveillance, and the normative implications that corporate and government surveillance has in (and on) contemporary Western political systems. In addition to publishing in academic journals and presses, he routinely presents findings to members of government and the media. He is also a Privacy by Design Ambassador and an advisor to several small- and medium-sized organizations.

Patricia de Vries

International Speaker

Patricia de Vries is project coordinator of the MoneyLab project at the Institute of Network Cultures. The MoneyLab research project considers digital experiments with revenue models, payment systems and currencies. Patricia has an academic formation in Media Studies (BA), Cultural Analysis (MA) and Liberal Studies (MA). From 2010 until 2012 she was based in New York where she served as a research associate at the think tank World Policy Institute, and as a teaching assistant of prof. James Miller at The New School for Social Research.

Lucia Mariani

FUTURE15 Talks Speaker

Drawing from 12 years digital marketing experience working with Canadian brands, retailers, education and health sectors, Lucia has experience in completing high profile projects on tight deadlines and lean resources. She has developed and lead digital campaigns that have gained recognition from Canadian creative and digital advertising associations. She provides thought leadership for effective and efficient interactive marketing strategies, and provides outstanding results. She holds a master’s degree in Information Studies from the University of Toronto. She co­manages Girls In Tech Toronto and co­directs an annual TEDxWoman in Toronto. Lucia has appeared as a guest on CTV Tech Talk and CBC Radio. Recently, she was featured in Flare’s Leading Women in Tech feature.

Sukanya Pillay

Speaker, Privacy Panel

Sukanya Pillay is the Executive Director and General Counsel of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association & Education Trust since February 2014. Sukanya has been with CCLA since 2009 when she joined to advance the organization’s work on national security and counter-terrorism. She has represented clients or presented expert evidence before administrative and judicial bodies in the US, India, Canada, and Europe, and has also represented CCLA before the Supreme Court of Canada and before UN Treaty Bodies or Special Mechanisms. Sukanya has worked in the public and private sectors including as a law professor at Windsor, a lawyer at international NGOs in New York and London, and as in-house counsel for a multinational organization in South Asia. Her work has focused on international human rights including trade and privacy. She has one numerous awards for her work including the Holmes-Carzozo award for Outstanding Conference Paper from the American Academy of Legal Studies in Business for a co-authored paper on genetic privacy.

Frank Russo

FUTURE15 Talks Speaker

Frank A. Russo, Ph.D. is Associate Professor of Psychology and Hear the World Research Chair at Ryerson University. He also holds appointments at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute (Adjunct Scientist) and the University of Toronto (Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Music). He has published widely in journals spanning psychology, neuroscience, acoustics, music, engineering, and emotion. He is also committed to the dissemination and translation of research beyond journals through creative collaborations with artists, community-based groups, and industry. Successful translations of his research include a Canadian train-horn standard, a cognitively based software engine for music generation/analysis, a sensory substitution technology supporting music perception by the Deaf, singing therapy for communication disorders, and a series of exhibitions/concerts featuring music without sound.  He has received Early Career awards from the Ministry of Research and Innovation and the Canadian Society for Brain Behaviour and Cognitive Science. He is currently on the Editorial Board of six journals (Canadian Acoustics, Canadian Journal of Experimental Psychology, Frontiers in Emotion Science, Music Perception, Psychomusicology, and the Journal of Music Therapy) and President of the Canadian Acoustical Association.

Karan Singh

FUTURE15 Talks Speaker

Karan Singh is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at the University of Toronto and Co-Director of the graphics and HCI laboratory, DGP (Dynamic Graphics Project). His research interests include geometric design, character animation, artistic perception and representation of shape and 3D interaction interfaces. He received his B.S. in Computer Science from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras in 1991, and both an MS and Ph.D. from the Ohio State University in 1992 and 1995. He was a researcher at Alias Inc. from 1995-1999 where he designed and developed character and facial animation tools for Maya ver.1.0, and was involved with the design and implementation of conceptual design and reverse engineering software at Paraform Inc. from 1999-2001. He was the Software R+D Director for the award-winning animated short film Ryan in 2004.

Dr. Catherine Theodoropoulos

FUTURE15 Featured Talks Speaker

Catherine Theodoropoulos, PhD is the VP of Marketing and Product Strategy at MolecuLight. She directs all marketing activities and drives all aspects of product definition including positioning and the future roadmap. Previously as Director of Product Management at VisualSonics, Dr Theodoropoulos was instrumental in shaping product direction, market positioning and overseeing market expansion of the company’s high-frequency ultrasound and photoacoustic imaging devices. Before this role, she held various positions in new application development, marketing, market research, customer liaison roles and general management/leadership. Her scientific background is in biochemistry, molecular biology and pharmacology.

William Yong

FUTURE15 Talks Speaker

William Yong was trained at the London Contemporary Dance School in England and was admitted to the Master of Arts with distinction by University of Kent. Previous dance companies he worked with included Wayne McGregor’s Random Dance, Matthew Bourne’s AMP, Toronto Dance Theatre, Peggy Baker, CORPUS, Theatre Rusticle, Fila 13 and many others. William was nominated for Dora Mavor Moore Award, the Young Centre Performing Arts Multidisciplinary Dance Artists Award and K.M. Hunter Artist Award. He was awarded the winner of 2013 Canadian Dance Assembly’s ‘I love dance/J’aime la danse’ Award for Innovation.

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