The Massey Dialogues welcomes Rana Sarkar, Consul General of Canada in San Francisco | Silicon Valley, to discuss the decentralization of Silicon Valley and the future of Canada in Tech. Junior Fellow Keshna Sood will host and moderate the Dialogue, joined in conversation by Junior Fellow Nathaniel Starkman and Senior Fellow Chirag Variawa.
Click here to watch the livestream of this event. The Dialogues are open to the public – we invite everyone to join and take part in what will be a very informative online discussion. Participants are invited to submit questions to the speakers in real time via the youtube channel’s chat function. For information about the Massey Dialogues salon series, click here.
Keshna Sood is a Junior Fellow and direct-entry Molecular Genetics PhD Candidate in the Faculty of Medicine. Her doctoral research focuses on the development of novel therapeutics (biologics) to modulate cell migration and adhesion in the disease contexts of cancer and fibrosis. With an early and keen interest in science at-large, Keshna comes from a diverse background of working in the labs of neuroscience, developmental biology and evolutionary biology where her work gained a publication in Science. Keshna is a recipient of the Norman Bethune Award (2018) and Ontario Graduate Scholarship (2018 and 2019), and has won a number of Presentation awards for her strong style of science communication. Keshna invests her spare time mentoring young women in STEM and is passionate about science policy and the future commercialization and policy around different biotechnologies.
Mr. Rana Sarkar was appointed as Consul General of Canada in San Francisco, Silicon Valley in 2017, with accreditation for Northern California and Hawaii. He is also a member of Canada’s NAFTA Advisory Council. Previously, Mr. Sarkar served as National Director for High Growth Markets at KPMG Canada, and co-chairman of the advisory board at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto.
With great international experience, Mr. Sarkar began his career as a consultant at Roland Berger Strategy Consultants in London and Munich and helped establish Roland Berger in India. He also served as a visiting lecturer at the London School of Economics and the CASS Business School at the University of London. Mr. Sarkar was President and Chief Executive Officer of the Canada-India Business Council (2009-2013).
He attended the London School of Economics, Queen’s University at Kingston, Ontario, and the INSEAD Executive Program in France. He is a member of the advisory council of the Mowat Centre for Policy Innovation, Canada2020, and The Literary Review of Canada and a Distinguished Fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto. Mr. Sarkar is married to lawyer and author Reva Seth, both of whom live in San Francisco with their three children and oversized labradoodle.
Nathaniel Starkman is a Junior Fellow at Massey College and an Astrophysics PhD student studying the composition and distribution of dark matter in our Galaxy, and Universe at large. Academically, he graduated Summa Cum Laude from Case Western Reserve University and won both the NSERC CGSM and CGSD while here at UofT. Nathaniel is an advocate for public outreach: he plans public telescope events, recently lectured in an online Kaplan Cosmology Course, and helps organize a science communication conference for later this month. Nathaniel’s interests are far-reaching, including a deep fascination with the future of technology and intentional design to promote equality.
Chirag Variawa is the Director, First Year Curriculum, and Assistant Professor, Teaching-stream, at the Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering, University of Toronto. He coordinates and teaches several 1000+ student courses at the first-year level, and a Ph.D. course in engineering education. His multidisciplinary teaching and collaborative research bring together Engineering Education, Industrial Engineering, and Artificial Intelligence to identify, understand, and mitigate learning barriers for diverse student populations. Dr. Chirag Variawa is currently a Senior Fellow at Massey College and had received his Ph.D. from the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, and his B.A.Sc in Materials Science Engineering, both from the University of Toronto.