Update: The TechKnowFile (TKF) 2020 conference has been cancelled and will reconvene in 2021.


Information Technology Services (ITS) at the University of Toronto (U of T) is excited to present TechKnowFile (TKF) 2020, a one and a half day conference that provides a platform for professionals to share and discuss news, trends, accomplishments and strategies. This unique annual conference celebrates the diverse IT community at U of T. Now in its 17th year, the conference’s theme is TKF 2020: Vision to Action.

The conference’s audience is the U of T tri-campus community. This includes all faculty and staff (management and non-management), such as leaders, decision-makers, directors, managers, communications professionals and administrators, who are interested in IT issues and topics.

It’s all happening this spring in the heart of Toronto at U of T’s beautiful St. George campus from April 29 to 30.


High-quality sessions

TKF chair – Isaac Straley

Isaac Straley

TechKnowFile (TKF) 2020 is proud to introduce conference chair Isaac Straley, chief information security officer (CISO) at the University of Toronto (U of T).

Isaac has held this inaugural U of T position since December 2018. Previously, he held the dual post of both CISO and privacy officer at the University of California for 13 years.

In his current role, Isaac has oversight of the Information Security program, ensuring that U of T’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 chief information officer (CIO) and the University’s senior administrative team.

Isaac is an alum of California State University, Long Beach and holds the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) designation.

Conference map

Conference Map

U of T’s St. George campus will be the location of TKF 2020.

Activities will take place in the following buildings on the campus:


What is TechKnowFile (TKF) 2020?

TKF is an annual event hosted by University of Toronto’s (U of T) Information Technology Services (ITS) for all staff and faculty (management and non-management), including leaders, decision-makers, directors, managers, communications professionals and administrators, interested in IT. It is an opportunity to share ideas and collaborate, discuss trends and innovations, network and build meaningful partnerships.

What is the location of TKF?

U of T’s St. George campus will be the location of TKF 2020. Activities will take place in various areas of the campus, including the Convocation Hall, the Bahen Centre for Information Technology, Myhal Centre for Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship and C. David Naylor Student Commons (Stone Lobby), Medical Sciences Building.

What is new for TKF 2020?

  • Registration this year will take place at the C. David Naylor Lobby (Medical Sciences Building), University of Toronto, located at 1 King’s College Circle.
  • To reduce line-ups on conference days, guests can pick up their registration information, including badges, a day before on April 28, from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (at C. David Naylor Lobby).
  • No last-minute registrations will be accepted. The deadline to register is April 15.
  • This year’s Unconference will introduce “five-minute pitch” sessions.
  • Refreshments and light snacks will be available throughout the conference.

    On April 29:

    • 7:30 a.m. – 11 a.m. at the Myhal Centre and C. David Naylor Student Commons
    • 2 – 3:15 p.m. at the Myhal Centre and the Bahen Centre

    On April 30:

    • 7:30 a.m. – 10:15 a.m. at the Myhal Centre and the Bahen Centre

Who is hosting TKF?

TKF 2020 is hosted by U of T’s Office of the Chief Information Officer (CIO), ITS.

Is TKF registration complimentary for U of T staff and faculty?

Yes, U of T staff and faculty are encouraged to attend the conference, complimentary of the Office of the CIO. Please note: although TKF is complimentary, there are costs associated with the event. If you register but can no longer attend, contact the conference committee (email: its.eda@utoronto.ca) or edit your registration form (to indicate “unregister”).

Do I need to register to attend TKF?

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

Will this be a sustainable event?

Yes, U of T is one of Canada’s Greenest Employers and the TKF Committee is helping reduce the carbon footprint of the conference by following the Sustainable Events guidelines. Some of green initiatives you will experience at TKF include:

  • Digital communications/marketing tools for event promotion and agenda.
  • Organizers are limiting food waste by ordering food for only the number of people registered. Note: for this reason, if you register and cannot attend, you are asked to contact the conference committee (email: its.eda@utoronto.ca) or edit your registration form to indicate “unregister.”

What is the theme of this year’s conference?

This year’s theme is TKF 2020: Vision to Action.

What type of topics can I expect?

Topics explored this year will include recent trends and development in information security, the IT@UofT Strategic Plan and leadership.

What are the TKF 2020 proposal streams?

The conference is focused on IT with three main streams that proposal(s) may fall under. They are:

  1. Information security
    This year’s conference chair is U of T Chief Information Security Officer Isaac Straley who will bring a special information security focus to the conference. 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.
  2. IT@UofT Strategic Plan & technical topics
    The IT@UofT Strategic Plan includes three strategic pillars: people, collaboration and solutions. These thematic areas reflect key ideas and concepts that help inform all the work ITS does — everything from large-scale projects like the Enterprise Service Centre to regularly scheduled phishing email campaigns. Consider submitting a project and/or idea that connects back to the plan. Technical topics are also important. Remember: decoding and finding solutions to technical issues is what ITS is best known for. Subject matter experts who can deconstruct complex issues, examine tools and offer key learnings, results and analysis play an important role in TKF sessions.
  3. Culture and core values
    Creating a culture that supports development and promotes shared leadership, creativity, excellence in service and teamwork is the foundation of the ITS Core Values. 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!

How do I submit a proposal?

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

How many sessions will there be?

There will be 40+ sessions at the conference.

Will TKF feature the Unconference sessions this year?

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

Will there be exhibitors at TKF?

Yes, exhibitors will be set up at Myhal Centre for Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship, located at 55 St. George St. More details on this will be available in the conference schedule.

Can I attend the event as a participant and also as a volunteer?

Yes, but all attendees must register. For information on volunteer opportunities, please visit our volunteer page.

What are the sponsorship opportunities for this event?

This unique one and a half day event will be an opportunity to showcase products and services, engage with decision-makers and build meaningful partnerships. TKF is expected to attract hundreds of attendees. To learn more about becoming a sponsor, visit the sponsorship page.

Benefits include:

  • Association with Canada’s top-ranked university and the Times Higher Education  21st university in the world.
  • Event website, signage and promotions via social media channels.
  • Optional: exhibition space, while supplies last (standard size).

What are the overall benefits/opportunities for TKF attendees?

  • Be a part of TKF’s long-standing tradition — now in its 17th year! —by attending this premiere professional networking event hosted by and for the University’s IT community.
  • Advance skill sets and knowledge by learning about the latest trends in technologies and services affecting the information technology sector. There will be more than 40 high-quality sessions to choose from.
  • Build partnerships by engaging with an audience of more than 700 professionals, including IT leaders, decision-makers, directors, managers, communications professionals and administrators.
  • See prominent 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.

What are the key dates/deadlines for TKF?

  • Feb. 10: Call for sponsorship opens.
  • Feb. 19: Call for proposal submissions opens.
  • Feb. 19: Registration opens.
  • March 2: Deadline for sponsorship opportunities.
  • March 16: Deadline for proposal submissions.
  • March 27: Deadline to volunteer.
  • Early April: Submission decision communicated to selected presenters by conference committee.
  • April 3: Session selection opens.
  • April 15: Deadline to register for conference.
  • April 15: Session selection closes.
  • April 28: Onsite registration and badge pick up opens.