Watch talks from TEDxToronto 2014 now Watch Here


  • TEDxToronto 2015 Team Applications

    2015 Team Applications Are Now Closed

    Applications to join our Marketing, Programming, Logistics, Partnerships and After Party teams are now closed for the 2015 season. However, we will be searching for volunteers to help out on the day of our 2015 conference. Details will be released this summer.

  • Announcing the TEDxToronto 2015 Co-Chairs

    Negin Sairafi

    Negin Sairafi

    Matt Ryan

    Matt Ryan


    The TEDxToronto Board of Directors is delighted to announce the selection of Matt Ryan and Negin Sairafi as the new co-chairs of the TEDxToronto 2015 conference, scheduled for October 22, 2015 at the TELUS Centre’s Koerner Hall.

    A marketing enthusiast with over 14 years of experience, Ryan was on the partnerships team for TEDxToronto 2014, working with the core team and partners to bring the event to life, and has attended multiple TEDx events.  He is passionate about marketing and amplifying ideas and doing things differently.  He enjoys surrounding himself with great thinkers, leaders, and innovators.

    Sairafi has been a creative entrepreneur for the past six years. She has launched several businesses including a photography studio, photography classes and an online store specializing in custom wall art. Her next project will focus on content creation and storytelling through film, photography, writing and design. She is a proud member of the TEDxToronto community and this will be her third year as part of the organizing committee.


  • Final round of talks and performances from TEDxToronto 2014

    Photo of The Toronto Symphony Orchestra, courtesy of The Westend Studio.

    Photo of The Toronto Symphony Orchestra, courtesy of The Westend Studio.

    We are pleased to share our final round of talks and performances from TEDxToronto 2014.

    The Toronto Symphony Orchestra: Ravel’s “Boléro”

    Founded in 1922, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) is one of Canada’s most important cultural institutions, recognized internationally as an outstanding orchestra. To open TEDxToronto 2014, the TSO gave a surprise performance of Maurice Ravel’s “Boléro.” The snare drum sets the piece in motion; against the rhythmic foundation it taps out continuously, the main theme is first played, very quietly, by a flute, then gradually, every type of orchestral instrument joins in with the theme in turn. The ensemble steadily increases in sound and size as the piece progresses, until all members of the orchestra are playing, reaching full volume at the piece’s climax. As a musical representation of this conference’s theme, “Boléro” brings to mind an evolving entity of many parts working together in steady—though relentless—pursuit of a single goal.

    Colin Boyd Shafer: Ordinary people, Extraordinary Lives: Photographing the World

    In his project “Cosmopolis”, Toronto-based photographer Colin Boyd Shafer takes a portrait of a different Torontonian from every country in the world. In this thoughtful and inspiring TEDxToronto talk, Colin helps demonstrate the power of human connection through personal story, while teaching us that sometimes the best stories are the ones from those we least expect.

    Dr. Margot Taylor: Seeing Invisible Injury: Diagnosing PTSD

    World-renowned researcher Dr. Margot Taylor and her research team were asked by the Canadian Armed Forces to see if they could develop a method to diagnose Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. In this important talk, Dr. Taylor shares her experience in undertaking this groundbreaking discovery while sharing some key insights around the importance of asking difficult questions to challenge our current ways of thinking.

    Maylee Todd: Inspiring Creativity Through the Power of Sound

    In this dynamic performance, Canadian musician Maylee Todd uplifts the audience with eclectic musical forms. Her style combines organic and electronic elements, including boogie, bossa, space funk, psychedelia and soul. This dynamic and creative approach inspires creativity and challenges us to think what is possible when we combine different mediums to create new and different results – both in music and in life.

    The rest of the talks and performances from TEDxToronto 2014 are available for viewing, here. Thank you for continuing to help us share ideas worth spreading.

  • Third round of talks from TEDxToronto 2014


    Photo of Adam van Koeverden, courtesy of Andrew Williamson

    We are so pleased to share the third round of talks from the sixth annual TEDxToronto conference.


    David Fleet: Teaching Computers to See

    Vision, and our understanding of what we see, is arguably the most complex of the human senses. Computer scientists have made incredible progress over the last twenty years within the realm of computer vision, but simply seeing isn’t enough. In this TEDxTalk, David Fleet explains that real value of computer vision lies in a machine’s ability to process what it sees and to draw conclusions and inferences from that data — in the same way that humans process visual information.  While we’ve all heard that “seeing is believing,” David Fleet asks, “How much of the brain’s phenomenal capacity to learn can we give to computers so that we can believe what they will see?”


    Pantea Razzaghi: DIYBio: Unlock the Scientist in You

    The future of medicine no longer rests solely in the hands of doctors and scientists. With the do-it-yourself biology movement, citizens from all walks of life are banding together to devise solutions for many of the medical conditions and diseases that plague societies around the world. Open science platforms like Synbiota provide us with access to pools of scientific knowledge, and allow contributors to expand upon formulae and data that already exists. In this TEDxTalk, Pantea Razzaghi presents the benefits of this new approach to science and suggests that perhaps a scientist exists within each of us.


    Adam van Koeverden: The Pursuable Prime

    Olympic athletes spend much of their youth training to become world champions. But what happens once suddenly you’ve achieved those goals, and after twenty years of pursuing your sport you no longer have the same stamina you once did? In this TEDxTalk, Olympic gold medalist and world champion sprint kayaker Adam van Koeverden discusses the key factors that motivated him to succeed from a young age, and reflects on the impact that those lessons have had on his more recent years in kayaking. How can athletes continue to participate in their sport beyond their physical prime and what can we learn from them?


    John Cruickshank: Why We Can’t Afford to Disengage from the News

    In an era when social media and online publications are a primary source of news for so many, one might wonder if there is still a place for the newspaper amidst all the noise. In this TEDxTalk, John Cruickshank urges that traditional news sources must quickly find a way to re-engage younger populations to continue breeding an engaged society of socially and politically active citizens. He draws strong parallels between declining  interest in the news and the decrease in political participation amongst young people, and offers suggestions as to how we might break this cycle.

    Read an excerpt from John’s talk here in the Toronto Star.

    The final round of talks and performances from TEDxToronto 2014 will be shared with you next week.


  • Four more talks from TEDxToronto 2014


    Photo of Sabrina Jalees, courtesy of The WestEnd Studio

     We are pleased to share with you the second round of talks and performances from the sixth annual TEDxToronto conference.


    Ana Serrano: Life Inside the Bubble of a Virtual Reality World

    Since the introduction of virtual reality (VR), technologists have struggled to design products and applications that draw users into digital worlds that are comparable to real-life experiences. As we progress towards the ability to tell stories by offering wholly immersive experiences for the user, we start to imagine what an entire industry devoted to the creation of virtual reality may look like in the near future. In this TEDxTalk, Ana Serrano extracts lessons learned from the explosion of the Internet over the past twenty years, and explains how these will help guide us in the creation of the virtual reality industry for the next twenty years. What can we learn from the way advertising and the public commons have changed online over time? How will this affect the VR world for the future? What risks does it present to the consumer? And how can we rectify it going forward? These are just a few of the thought-provoking questions she tackles during this talk.


    Gabriela Mastromonaco: Why We Need Zoos

    There are various schools of thought surrounding zoos and their purpose. Skeptics argue that it’s unethical to remove wild animals from their natural habitat to be put on display, but proponents of zoos stress that they serve a critical scientific purpose. In this TEDxTalk, Dr. Gabriella Mastromonaco explains that zoos play a vital role in preserving endangered species, and that they have a responsibility to explore the use of reproductive technologies to sustain animal populations that are currently threatened in the wild. Dr. Mastromonaco asks: If you had the opportunity to save an endangered species, would you just turn your back and walk away?


    Sabrina Jalees: How Living More Honestly Leads to a Better Life

    Throughout history, comedians have used humor to shed light on subjects that are typically considered to be uncomfortable or taboo. In this TEDxTalk, comedian Sabrina Jalees approaches topics like racism and sexuality as she tells a coming-of-age story laced with hilarity. After working up the courage to tell her Muslim family that she was a lesbian, Sabrina learned that being true to herself and taking pride in her individuality would not only enhance her material as a comedian, but that ultimately it would lead to a happier life.


    Choir!Choir!Choir!: “Because The Night” (performance)

    Choir!Choir!Choir! is a no-commitment choir based in Toronto, co-founded by Nobu Adilman and Daveed Goldman. At TEDxToronto, fifty-four members of the choir took the stage, with Nobu and Daveed leading our audience in a one-thousand person sing-along to Patti Smith’s “Because The Night.” Meeting regularly to sing new arrangements of pop songs, Choir!Choir!Choir! boasts dedicated and passionate membership of inspired singers from in and around Toronto and has quickly become a citywide phenomenon.


    Talks from TEDxToronto 2014 speakers Nav Bhatia, Jamil Jivani, Keith Vanderlinde and Rachel Parent can be viewed here. Stay tuned for additional talks being added in the coming weeks!