A young, vibrant, can-do city, Vancouver is proving a fertile hub for the technology and start-up scene. Fast earning its “Silicon Valley North” moniker, the city is gearing up for the return of the #BCTECH Summit, taking place on March 14 and 15 at the Vancouver Convention Centre. British Columbia’s largest technology conference, the #BCTECH Summit showcases the province’s latest ideas and innovations in the technology industry.
The Summit will explore everything from eHealth data and self-driving vehicles to agri-tech and aerospace, while bringing together tech entrepreneurs, business leaders and anchor companies to nurture networks, exchange ideas and drive business growth.
To ring in the #BCTECH Summit, the public is invited to join a full day of free pre-Summit events and activities on March 13. From insightful discussions with industry leaders to music and the lighting of the Olympic Cauldron, here are five ways to make the most of #BCTECH’s pre-Summit festivities:
1. Make a difference at LipSync Monday Makeathon
In support of the Neil Squire Society, a charity that uses technology to empower people with disabilities, the Monday Makeathon will see registered teams build a LipSync – a mouth-operated joystick with sip and puff controls – using provided tools and instructions. Each team will help one person with a disability leave with a piece of technology that enables them to use a touchscreen on their wheelchair. Individuals or teams can register to participate.
2. Learn from the experts
Attend an Innovation Network Discussion on Clusters, led by UBC President Santa Ono, where senior leaders from B.C.-based industry and post-secondary partners will discuss emerging and established clusters in B.C.; or hear BDC’s Chief Economist, Pierre Cléroux, discuss the successes and the most pressing business and financial concerns of Canadian tech entrepreneurs during his talk The Pivot Moment: 4 Game-Changing Growth Challenges Facing British Columbia’s Tech Entrepreneurs and The Way Forward.
3. Join in the fun at #BCTECH On the Terrace
You won’t want to miss this gig (not the data kind) when DJ Emilia will perform from the Traction on Demand Airstream on the Pacific West Terrace of the Vancouver Convention Centre. Enjoy music, beverages and food, including free hotdogs for the first 100 attendees. Plus, be sure to stay for some pyrotechnics – #BCTECH Summit will light the Olympic Cauldron at Jack Poole Plaza to officially kick off the event.
4. Step into the Dragons’ Den
Join Dragons’ Den stars Bruce Croxon and Manjit Minhas for an interactive and inspirational evening event, Igniting Investment for Business Growth: Fireside Chat with the Dragons. Gain insight into the lives of two of Canada’s leading entrepreneurs, who have quickly and successfully established multimillion-dollar companies in highly competitive markets.
5. Attend an exclusive screening of GENERATION STARTUP
GENERATION STARTUP is a documentary following six entrepreneurs and their triumphs and failures as they put everything on the line to build their startups in Detroit, USA. Directed by Academy Award-winner Cynthia Wade and award-winning filmmaker Cheryl Miller Houser, the film celebrates risk-taking, urban revitalization and diversity. This is the first screening of the documentary in Canada.
#BCTECH Pre-Summit Agenda – March 13
1:00 – 5:00 PM: LipSync Monday Makeathon (Pre-registration required)
4:00 – 6:00 PM: The Pivot Moment: 4 Game-Changing Growth Challenges Facing British Columbia’s Tech Entrepreneurs and The Way Forward (Pre-registration required)
5:00 – 8:00 PM: #BCTECH On the Terrace
5:30 PM: Lighting of the Cauldron
6:15 – 8:30 PM: Igniting Investment for Business Growth: Fireside Chat with The Dragons (Tickets on sale)
7:00 – 8:30 PM: Exclusive Screening: GENERATION STARTUP (Pre-registration required)
For more information on the #BCTECH Summit, and to register for pre-Summit events, visit www.bctechsummit.ca.