Igniting Impact


Igniting Impact


Igniting Impact Challenge Events 2018

All 3 themed events are at 4–7 pm in room 417 of University of Toronto’s Best Institute (112 College Street):

Assistive Technologies on Tuesday, January 23
Energy Efficiency on Tuesday, January 30
Improving Health on Wednesday, February 7

Events are free and dinner will be served.

Application and approval is required to attend.

Calling on science & engineering grad students & postdocs wanting to make an impact!

The Impact Centre at the University of Toronto is dedicated to taking science to benefit society. We believe those who are highly skilled in science and technology can make positive impact by turning scientific discoveries into products that can be used by society.

In these three themed Igniting Impact Challenge Events, our staff, who have expertise in both science and business, works with you to understand your science then guides you to identify interesting problems that you can attempt to solve. Already have an idea? Come tell us about it and we can refine it and help you plan out next steps!

By participating, you can win up to $5,500 in cash plus access to space, equipment, and mentorship to jumpstart your idea!

Mark Elias founded Steadiwear to help people suffering from Parkinson's disease and other hand tremors
What’s the event like?

During each event, we’ll:

  • Let you tell us about your past and present research projects, skills, and expertise
  • Help you seek out societal and business challenges that align with your skillset and interests
  • Brainstorm ideas to solve those challenges (and/or refine the ideas you already have)
  • Introduce you to former grad students and postdocs who are now entrepreneurs
  • Serve you a good, hearty dinner to get the ideas flowing!
Who has done this before?
  • Pooja Viswanathan (Ph.D., computer science) used her research project to found Braze Mobility, a company that sells a proprietary product that enables people in electric wheelchairs to navigate tight spaces and avoid collisions.
  • Kevin Jakiela and Conner Tidd (both M.Sc., environmental science and sustainability management) founded Just Vertical to make indoor farming easier for city dwellers because they believe local food can reduce our harmful impact on the environment.
  • Mayrose Salvador (Ph.D., chemistry) founded Pueblo Science, a Canadian charity that improves science education around the developing world, because she beleives that scientific knowledge is an effective method to advance health and achieve economic success.
  • Michael Montgomery (Ph.D., structural engineering) developed a new damper technology as part of his thesis and founded Kinetica Dynamics to improve the resilience of high-rise buildings from both wind and earthquake damage.