Toronto is a growing centre of innovation with a diverse population facing complex needs. What if we applied the talent, passion and ideas of a City of Innovators to create scalable solutions for the city we love?
It's possible.

 
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our mission

OUR MISSION

Improve Toronto services using tech, data analysis and design thinking.

We focus on creating meaningful solutions for the people of Toronto through human-centered design principles, new ideas and modern tools. We believe that enhancing the collection, analysis and availability of data helps us all understand Toronto better.

Facilitate collaboration across City divisions and with external partners.

We engage with Toronto’s growing innovation sector as a client, co-creator and champion. By focusing on resident-facing issues and encouraging collaboration between City divisions, we develop opportunities for talented people to do their best work with the City.

Introduce an agile approach to addressing complex City challenges.

Rapid prototypes help us measure impact, learn from failure, and iterate quickly. Our aim is to create a culture which embraces new ideas, methods and tools while challenging expectations. We reject the idea that “we’ve always done it this way” is a good enough reason to maintain the status quo.

 

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Headshot of Paula Kwan

PAULA KWAN

Office Director 

Paula brings 10 years of experience in the software industry with a focus on lean and agile methodologies, project and program implementation, change management, reporting, analytics, wearable and emerging technologies, and process improvement. 

Most recently the Head of Global Expansion at Pivotal, Paula is eager to make an impact in her own community and excited to leverage her experience, passion and deep network within the tech sector to help serve Toronto residents.

Paula's full bio on LinkedIn

 
Headshot of Todd Orvitz

TODD ORVITZ

Policy & Operations

Todd has made a career out of serving Toronto and its residents. His extended policy career with the Public Service has focused on multi-divisional initiatives and strategies impacting the well-being of Torontonians. 

During his time with the City, Todd has led the response to the Mayor’s Task Force on Toronto Community Housing, helped to design program models to deliver coordinated service integration for vulnerable people, and in his most recent position as Director of Corporate Policy in the City Manager’s Office, he spearheaded numerous innovative policy initiatives across the City’s service divisions. More than anything Todd loves Toronto and its ability to create beautiful things.   

Todd's full bio on LinkedIn

 
Headshot of Jay Vidyarthi holding a banana for fun

JAY VIDYARTHI 

Design Strategist

Jay is an award-winning experience designer and researcher. He guides teams through a human-centered approach to creating meaningful products, systems and services.

Working with some incredible people, Jay has launched a successful startup product with millions in revenue, led UX projects for major international clients, established an annual mindfulness conference with 500+ attendees every year, published well-cited academic papers, been featured in top-tier press, and played hundreds of gigs as an independent musician.

Jay's full bio on LinkedIn

 

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Structure

STRUCTURE

The Civic Innovation Office is part of the City Manager’s Office and was created in collaboration with the Mayor’s Office with funding from Bloomberg Philanthropies. To ensure the success of our projects, we work closely with the Chief Corporate Officer, Chief Information Officer, Executive Director of Financial Planning and Chief Purchasing Official.