IT@UofT conference – home page2021-05-17T12:53:48-04:00

IT@UofT 2021


Video conference

May 5 & 6, 2021
10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

University of Toronto

Register now
Video conference

IT@UofT 2021


May 5 & 6, 2021
10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

University of Toronto

Register now
Count down to the event!

This event has now ended. Thank you to everyone who participated, including attendees, speakers, volunteers and sponsors. We look forward to seeing you all again in 2022!

IT@UofT concept graphics


The IT@UofT 2021 conference — formerly known as TechKnowFile (TKF) is taking place spring 2021. This has always been a forum created by the community, for the community — and this year is no exception.

The name of this event has changed, and we have gone virtual, but the goal remains the same: to provide a platform for people to share ideas, discuss trends and network with colleagues across the tri-campus community. The event proudly hosted by Information Technology Services (ITS) is open to University of Toronto (U of T) faculty and staff (management and employees) — including IT leaders, technical specialists, decision-makers, communications professionals and administrators.

IT@UofT 2021 By The Numbers

Icon for calendar
2 Days
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900+ Attendees
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40+ High-quality sessions
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3 Keynote speakers
A group of people collaborating online.

Mark your calendar

  • May 5, 2021, 10:20 – 11:20 a.m. — Keynote speaker Gillian Hadfield, Director of the Schwartz Reisman Institute for Technology and Society at the University of Toronto (main stage).
  • May 6, 2021, 12:50 – 1:35 p.m. — Panel discussion: higher education CIOs and the pandemic. Featuring Jennifer Burns, Gayleen Gray, Brian Stewart and Bo Wandschneider (main stage).

Conference co-chairs

IT@UofT 2021 is proud to introduce conference chairs: Isaac Straley and Zoran Piljevic.

Profile image of Isaac Straley

Isaac Straley

Chief Information Security Officer (CISO),
University of Toronto (U of T) St. George

Isaac has held U of T’s inaugural CISO role since 2018. His leadership provides direction over the Information Security program, ensuring that the University’s networks, systems and information are protected and meeting all regulatory and policy requirements. He is also responsible for identifying, evaluating and reporting information security risks to the University’s senior administrative team. Prior to joining U of T, Isaac held the dual post of both CISO and privacy officer at the University of California for 13 years. He is an alum of California State University, Long Beach and holds the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) designation.

Profile image of Zoran Piljevic

Zoran Piljevic

Director, Information and Instructional Technology Services (IITS),
University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC)

As Director of IITS, Zoran oversees all IT infrastructure, services and information security for UTSC. The resources, services and information provided by the IITS department impact the more than 13,000 students and collective 650 staff/faculty who study, work and teach at this campus. Zoran holds a Master of Arts and Master of Information from U of T and has more than 20 years of experience in various IT roles. Recently, he has been focusing on the implementation of continual service improvement methodology. In both 2011 and 2016, he received U of T’s Excellence Through Innovation Award (ETIA).

Get to know: Tri-campus community “people”

IT@UofT 2021 is a conference for the community, created by the community. It will welcome hundreds of attendees to the event this spring. Get to know some of the community members who will be attending the conference as participants as well as the people who will be joining as volunteers, presenters and/or committee members.

Learn more about our community members
Derek Hunt

“I look forward to the TKF/IT@UofT conference every year. There are so many great things happening across the University; you always come away with new ideas and collaborations that you can take back to benefit your home division. The University is so large that you can’t always be aware of what other areas are working on, but at the same time it’s small enough to all get together and share at IT@UofT.”

Derek Hunt
Faculty Liaison, Teaching, Learning & Technology, Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation, St. George campus


Keynote speaker sponsor

Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company

Virtual booth sponsors

Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company
Dell Technologies
Palo Alto Networks

Prize sponsor

Global USS


1. What is the IT@UofT conference 2021?2021-03-18T16:12:45-04:00

IT@UofT 2021 is an annual University of Toronto (U of T) tri-campus conference, created by the community, for the community. The IT@UofT conference is the rebranded TechKnowFile (TKF) conference. It is the same annual event enjoyed and hosted by U of T Information Technology Services (ITS) with a new name. Its audience includes faculty and staff (management and employees) — including IT leaders, technical specialists, decision-makers, communications professionals and administrators. It is an opportunity to share ideas and collaborate, discuss trends and innovations, network and build meaningful partnerships.

2. Who is hosting the IT@UofT conference?2021-03-18T09:25:13-04:00

IT@UofT 2021 is hosted by ITS and championed by executive sponsor and CIO Bo Wandschneider.

3. Why is the 2021 conference virtual?2021-03-15T16:01:57-04:00

Previously, this annual conference, known as TKF, was an in-person event. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the conference is being planned for an online experience only.

4. Where is the conference being hosted?2021-04-01T09:39:58-04:00

The event will be hosted on the online platform Hopin. This virtual space will allow attendees to move between sessions, watch keynotes on the main stage, connect with fellow attendees in the networking lounge and visit exhibitors in the expo hall throughout the day.

1. Where is the conference being hosted?2021-04-01T09:42:39-04:00

The event will be hosted on the online platform Hopin. This virtual space will allow attendees to move between sessions, watch keynotes on the main stage, connect with fellow attendees in the networking lounge and speak to exhibitors in the expo hall throughout the day.

2. What is Hopin?2021-03-15T16:38:52-04:00

Hopin is an online events platform that will be used to host the IT@UofT 2021 conference. (It was previously used at U of T during Enterprise Applications and Solutions Integration (EASI) Discovery Days 2021 on Feb. 5). This virtual venue offers multiple interactive areas that are optimized for connecting and engaging. Attendees can move in and out of rooms just like an in-person event and enjoy a variety of content and sessions online.

1. Is registration complimentary for U of T staff and faculty?2021-03-22T12:01:02-04:00

Yes, U of T staff and faculty are encouraged to attend the conference, complimentary of the Office of the CIO.

Please note: although registration is complimentary, there are costs associated with the event. If you register but can no longer attend, contact the conference committee (email:

2. Do I need to register to attend IT@UofT 2021?2021-03-22T11:38:00-04:00

Yes, spaces are limited and registration is required. Please register online through our registration page.

5. What is the theme of this year’s conference?2021-03-18T15:47:12-04:00

This year’s theme is IT@UofT: People. Solutions. Collaboration.

3. How do you register for the conference?2021-03-22T10:54:48-04:00
  • Step #1: Create a Hopin profile (see question #4)
  • Step #2: Complete the registration form
3. Do I need a Hopin profile to register?2021-03-22T15:29:27-04:00

Yes, see registration steps below.

  1. Create your Hopkin profile. Go to
  2. Enter your full name in the headline field (max. 32 characters)
  3. Upload a profile picture (100x100px)
  4. Complete out the bio section (max. 133 characters)

When complete, your profile will look like this:
Sample Hopin profile

4. Do I need a Hopin profile to register?2021-03-22T15:32:57-04:00

Yes, see registration steps below.

  1. Create your Hopkin profile. Go to
  2. Enter your full name in the headline field (max. 32 characters)
  3. Upload a profile picture (100x100px)
  4. Complete out the bio section (max. 133 characters)

When complete, your profile will look like this:
Sample Hopin profile

4. Are there special requirements to access Hopin?2021-03-15T16:39:24-04:00

Yes, Hopin requires:

  • A laptop/desktop (please note: phones/tablets are not supported)
  • Google Chrome or Firefox, fully updated with pop-up blockers disabled, guarantee the best experience (please note: Safari, IE and Edge are not supported)
  • Minimum internet speed: five mbps down/two mbps up
  • Closing all unnecessary tabs/applications during the event
5. Do confirmed volunteers need to register for the conference?2021-03-22T11:22:05-04:00

Yes, all attendees must register, regardless if they are already a volunteer.

1. What are the IT@UofT 2021 proposal streams?2021-03-22T15:33:49-04:00
    1. Culture and core values
      Creating a culture that supports development and promotes shared leadership, learning, creativity, excellence in service and teamwork are ITS Core Values as well as values seen across the entire IT@UofT tri-campus community at the University. Share your expertise and experience on how to cultivate high-performance team practises, including professional development. Keep in mind: creative and critical thinking are encouraged – don’t be afraid to think outside the box and motivate others to do the same!
    2. Information security and privacy
      This year’s conference will bring a special focus to information security and privacy. The Information Security team’s motto is “one team, one goal,” meaning staying safe online is a collective effort and that U of T requires a diverse range of input and expertise in this area. Therefore, we are soliciting proposals about news, trends and best online practises as they relate to data, security and information privacy. We are also welcoming topics on broader issues, such as ethics and notice (i.e., privacy, data collection).

Initiatives within IT@UofT support the University’s mission of teaching, learning and research. Subject matter experts who can deconstruct complex issues, examine tools and offer key learnings, results and analysis will play an important role in the 2021 conference sessions. Consider submitting a project and/or idea that links to one of these three streams, which can involve technical solutions or people/collaborative-based initiatives:

  1. Instructional and academic technology and initiatives
  2. Research-related technology and initiatives
  3. Administrative technology and initiatives
6. How many sessions will there be?2021-03-15T16:47:13-04:00

There will be 30+ sessions at the conference.

5. What can I expect within Hopin?2021-04-01T09:56:19-04:00

There are five areas of Hopin:

  1. Reception
  2. Main stage (keynote speakers/panel discussions)
  3. Breakout sessions
  4. Networking lounge
  5. Expo hall (sponsor/exhibitor booths)

Learn more on Hopin’s website here.

2. What are the proposal/presentation guidelines for 2021?2021-03-18T16:27:47-04:00

The required presentation guidelines are:

  • Presentations should last no longer than 30 minutes in length. (Please note: this includes the actual presentation plus other engagement elements, such as a Q&A session).
  • Presentations must fall under one or more of the aforementioned proposal streams.
  • Use common categories to focus your work, such as introduction/background, research, dilemma/questions, methodology, statistics, results, analysis and conclusion.
  • Consider using virtual engagement strategies, such as surveys, polls and Q&As, to add meaningful interaction and creativity to your presentation. For example, the Hopin platform (where the conference will be hosted) offers Slido integration, which allows you to set up quizzes, polls, surveys, audience questions and more in an interactive and visual format. Learn more about the Slido feature and how to use it here.
  • If you are using a PowerPoint for your presentation, you must use the IT@UofT 2021 template, which will be emailed to you if your proposal is selected.
  • Determine your presentation format (i.e., lecture, workshop, Q&A, etc.) as it is required for the submission form.
  • Submit your presentation title and speaker name(s)/title(s) as you would like it to appear on the IT@UofT 2021 schedule.
6. How can I “network” using Hopin?2021-04-01T09:58:13-04:00

The networking segment on Hopin is similar to one-on-one meetings on a FaceTime call. This segment is designed to recreate the “coffee-in-the-lobby” conversations or watercooler chats that are important at an in-person event. The networking lounge automates the discovery of new connections. When an attendee participates in the networking, they are matched with a random attendee. Read more about virtual networking on Hopin’s website here.

3. How do I submit a proposal?2021-03-22T15:35:19-04:00

To submit a proposal, visit the proposal submission page. Read the proposal guidelines and complete the submission form.

7. Will there be keynote speakers?2021-03-22T15:35:55-04:00

Yes, read about conference keynote speakers here.

7. Where can I find additional Hopin onboarding resources?2021-03-22T15:31:51-04:00
  • Read a general overview article of the Hopin platform here.
  • Watch a video walk-through — attendee experience — here.
8. Will IT@UofT 2021 feature the Unconference sessions this year?2021-03-22T15:36:20-04:00

Yes, this year will include the annual Unconference portion. For more information, please visit the Unconference page.

8. Are there any technical tips and/or suggestions for attending this conference?2021-04-28T13:58:36-04:00

Yes, please review the IT@UofT 2021: technical requirement guidelines here for best practice tips, troubleshooting, device setting instructions and more.

9. Will there be exhibitors at the conference?2021-04-01T09:41:14-04:00

Yes, exhibitors will be set up in our virtual expo hall. More details on this will be available in the conference schedule (coming soon).

10. Can I attend the event as a participant and also as a volunteer?2021-03-22T15:37:05-04:00

Yes, but all attendees must register, regardless if they are already a volunteer. For information on volunteer opportunities, please visit our volunteer page.

11. What are the sponsorship opportunities for this event?2021-03-22T15:38:00-04:00

This will be a unique opportunity to showcase products and services, engage with decision-makers and build meaningful partnerships. This two-day event is expected to attract hundreds of attendees.

Other benefits include:


12. What are the overall benefits/opportunities for IT@UofT 2021 attendees?2021-03-22T15:38:27-04:00
  • To attend a premiere professional networking event hosted by and for U of T’s tri-campus community.
  • Learn about the latest trends in technologies and services affecting the information technology sector.
  • Engage in sessions about service excellence, professional development and leadership.
  • Engage with an audience of more than 900 professionals, including IT leaders, decision-makers, directors, managers, communications professionals and administrators.
  • Choose from more than 30 high-quality sessions.
  • See keynote speakers, such as Gillian Hadfield, the inaugural Schwartz Reisman Chair in Technology and Society, Professor of Law and Professor of Strategic Management at U of T.
13. What are the key dates/deadline for the conference?2021-03-24T16:17:39-04:00
  • Call for proposal submissions open: March 15
  • Registration opens: March 22
  • Deadline for proposal submissions: March 29 (extended!)
  • Deadline to volunteer: April 9
  • Deadline for sponsorship opportunities: April 9
  • Submission acceptance: April 16
  • Deadline for registration: April 23

Please note: dates are subject to change.

Hopin logo

The event will be hosted on Hopin. You will need a Hopin account to join this event.

Learn more about Hopin

Photo gallery

Exchanging ideas and making lasting connections with colleagues across the tri-campus community is what IT@UofT 2021 is all about! View images from past Information Technology Services conferences held at the University of Toronto.

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