Thanks for attending the 2017 conference.
Stay tuned for more info for 2018!



The Cascadia Innovation Corridor Conference brings together business, academic, and government leaders from both sides of the border to explore new strategies for the region to come together, maximize our shared competitive advantages, and elevate our global economic position. It's your chance to engage with regional, national and international experts on how we can work together to strengthen Cascadia's position as an international hub for innovation, spur job creation, and enhance our already high quality of life. This year's conference will:

  • Showcase progress made over the past year
  • Celebrate new partnerships and initiatives
  • Chart a path forward for the Cascadia Innovation Corridor

Those working on these initiatives and other innovative partnerships are committed to continuing to share best practices; enhance the region’s physical and intellectual infrastructure; create exciting new opportunities for young people in both countries; and bring the benefits of technology developments to underserved populations. The 2017 Cascadia Innovation Corridor Conference is an important step in that process.


Summary Agenda for the 2017 Cascadia Innovation Corridor Conference (Subject to Refinement)

Objective: Bringing business, government and academic leaders together to identify and pursue initiatives that will drive regional growth and foster international collaboration, in the spirit of unity that the Peace Arch symbolized – with demonstrable progress made by the centennial in 2021.

Tuesday, September 12

12:00 p.m.
Conference Welcome Lunch and Kick-Off Keynote Address

Senior business leaders and elected officials set the tone for the conference
by sharing their visions of the Cascadia Innovation Corridor

Conference MC, Maud Daudon, CEO and President, Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce
Welcome by The Honorable Dow Constantine, King County Executive
Brad Smith, President, Microsoft Corporation
Jeff Booth, President & CEO; Co-Founder, BuildDirect

2:00 p.m.
Special Message from the Canadian Government

Jonathan Wilkinson, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Environment
and Climate Change and Member of Parliament for North Vancouver

2:15 p.m.
BCG 2017 Report on Development of the Cascadia Corridor

The renowned international consulting group will share original research finding on
the opportunities that can be created through increased collaboration

John Wenstrup, Senior Partner & Managing Director, The Boston Consulting Group

2:45 p.m.
The Entrepreneur’s Perspective

A moderated “fireside chat” conversation featuring accomplished
entrepreneurs from both sides of the border

Introduction by Bill Tam, President and CEO, BC Tech Association
Ryan Holmes, CEO, Hootsuite
Geoff Entress, Managing Director, Pioneer Square Labs

3:30 p.m
Research and Higher Education – Helping Innovation Flourish

Leaders of major academic institutions and private sector representatives will discuss
higher education’s role in providing research and skilled workers to support innovation and economic opportunity

Moderated by Greg D’Avignon, President and CEO, Business Council of British Columbia
Ana Mari Cauce, President, University of Washington
Kathy Kinloch, President, British Columbia Institute of Technology
Santa Ono, President, University of British Columbia
Todd Zarfos, Vice President Engineering Functions, Boeing Commercial Airplanes

4:30 p.m.
Spurring Increased Venture Capital Investment in the Corridor

Experienced venture capitalists from both sides of the border will discuss
the need for more coordinated financial support for new ventures

Leaders of major academic institutions and private sector representatives will discuss
higher education’s role in providing research and skilled workers to support innovation and economic opportunity

Moderated by Tom Alberg, Managing Director, Madrona Venture Group
Alexandre Guertin, Associate, Kensington Capital Partners
Scott Jacobson, Managing Director, Madrona Venture Group
Glenn Kelman, CEO, Redfin
Heather Redman, Founder, Flying Fish Partners
Jeff Sinclair, Co-Founder and CEO, EventBase

5:30 p.m.
Networking Reception
Sponsored by: The Government of British Columbia

Meet your peers from both sides of the border while hearing from elected leaders
and learn more about an exciting Urban Analytics center co-founded by UW and UBC

The Honorable Dow Constantine, King County Executive
Fazil Mihlar, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Jobs, Trade and Technology, Province of British Columbia

Wednesday, September 13

7:30 a.m.
Breakfast Keynote: Building Strength through Regional Connections

Hear state and provincial leaders discuss how the public sector can support innovation and job creation, as well as how they’re coordinating efforts already

The Honorable Jay Inslee, Governor of Washington

8:45 a.m.
Cascadia Urban Analytics Cooperative (CUAC)

Thaisa Way, Professor, College of Built Environments, and
Executive Director, Urban@UW, University of Washington

9:00 a.m.
How Computing Technology is Transforming the Life Sciences

Hear how information technology is driving important breakthroughs in the
life sciences from company executives from both sides of the border

Sue Paish, President and CEO, LifeLabs
Brendan Byrne, Chief Innovation Officer, TELUS Health
Jane Roskams, CSO and Co-Founder, The Cascadia Data Federation;
Executive Director, The BRAIN Commons

10:00 a.m.
Cascadia Innovation Corridor Conference Partner Panel

Greg D’Avignon, President and CEO, Business Council of British Columbia
Maud Daudon, President and CEO, Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce
Steve Mullin, President, Washington Roundtable
Michael Schutzler, President and CEO, Washington Technology and Industry Association
Bill Tam, President and CEO, BC Tech Association

10:40 a.m.
Breakouts: Creating Opportunities
Option 1: Smart Cities Approaches to Transportation

Public, private and non-profit leaders will discuss how cities are using new technologies such as Artificial Intelligence to solve local challenges

Moderated by The Honorable Dave Somers, Snohomish County Executive
Ryan Calo, Faculty Co-Director, Tech Policy Lab, University of Washington
Kate Garman, Smart City Coordinator, City of Seattle
Andrew McCurran, Director of Strategic Planning and Policy, TransLink
Peter Leathley, Senior Manager, Digital Infrastructure and Assets, City of Vancouver

Option 2: Virtual / Mixed / Augmented Reality –
A Tech Sector Supporting Other Industries

Vancouver and Seattle are both international leaders in these technologies; hear from company representatives about how they could revolutionize education, training, collaboration and more

Moderated by, Matt Hooper, Founding Partner, Interactive Media & Entertainment Law PC
Graham Cunliffe, Director of Business Affairs & Operations, Finger Food
Ryan James, Co-Founder, CTO, Pear Med
Charles Lavigne, Co-founder and CEO, LlamaZOO

12:00 p.m.
Closing Luncheon: A Technology and Innovation Economy for All

Technological change can create divides between the “haves” and the “have-nots.” We’ll look at how to instead use technologies to bring all sectors of our communities closer together

Maria Klawe, President, Harvey Mudd College
Closing Remarks: Greg D’Avignon, President and CEO, BCBC and
Maud Daudon, President and CEO, Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce



Day 1

Day 2


What time is the conference?

The conference spans two days, Tuesday, September 12th and Wednesday, September 13th. On Tuesday, conference check-in opens at 11:00 AM and the conference will begin with an opening keynote address at noon, and wrap up with an evening cocktail reception that ends at 6:30 PM. On Wednesday the conference begins with a breakfast keynote address at 7:30 AM, and concludes with a lunch wrap-up keynote address ending at 1:30 PM.


How do I purchase my ticket?

Use the register button located at the top of this page. Choose the USA button if you are from the United States or the CAD button if you are from Canada, and complete the registration forms when the new page opens. Once you receive your receipt on screen, you are registered for the conference.


How do members of the press register?

If you are a member of the press, please contact to get registered.


Interested in sponsorship opportunities?

Sponsorships are available for both US and Canadian companies. Please contact


What is included in the event?

Your registration includes entry to all conference events on the agenda. Additionally we include lunch, and an evening reception on Tuesday, September 12th, and breakfast and lunch on Wednesday, September 13th. Hotel accommodations are not included in your registration.


What is the agenda for the conference?

An agenda will be released as we draw closer to the event. Continue to check back for details.


Can I reserve hotel accommodations?

We’ve reserved a block of rooms at a special conference rate at the Sheraton Seattle Hotel. If you’d like to reserve a room, please click here. Rooms are subject to availability so please book early to guarantee your room.


What restaurants do you recommend for dinner?

There is a variety of northwest cuisine within steps of the Sheraton. Click here to view recommendations.


Are there any nearby attractions after the conference?

You’re walking distance to the world famous Pike Place Market.
Be sure not to miss the Market and Seattle’s top 25 attractions.


New Regional Effort Aims to Establish Cascadia Innovation Corridor

British Columbia and Washington leaders come together to strengthen collaboration, create cross-border opportunity

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, September 20, 2016 – The creation of a new global hub for innovation and economic development is the focus of a conference being held today in Vancouver. 

The Emerging Cascadia Innovation Corridor Conference brings together business and government leaders to explore the potential for joint partnerships in education, transportation, university research, human capital and other areas. The conference is jointly hosted by the Business Council of British Columbia, the Washington Roundtable and Microsoft Corp.

Leaders on both sides of the border acknowledged the opportunity to create a single interconnected region that could be more competitive in today’s global economy and took immediate action today to deepen relationships and strengthen partnerships. 

At the conference, Washington Governor Jay Inslee and British Columbia Premier Christy Clark signed a formal agreement that committed the two governments to work closely together to "enhance meaningful and results-driven innovation and collaboration." The agreement outlines formal steps the two governments will take to collaborate in several key areas including trade, research, transportation and education.

In addition, the BC Cancer Agency, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance agreed to develop a new "master collaboration agreement" expanding patient access to care and clinical trials, advancing immunotherapy, enabling research collaboration, and providing better training opportunities for young scientists and researchers.

Seattle and Vancouver, the two cities at the heart of the new initiative, share a number of complementary strengths. These include a high quality of life, diverse communities, skilled and well-educated workforces, and strong economic and social ties to Asia. And yet, according to a new Boston Consulting Group (BCG) study released at the conference, the level of connectedness between the two cities remains remarkably low for two cities so close together. While only 120 miles or 190 kilometers apart they behave more like cities that are thousands of miles apart. [Read More...]


White Paper Icon

White Paper
Better Together: The Cascadia Innovation Corridor Opportunity
The Boston Consulting Group

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Working Paper
Cascadia High-Speed Rail Opportunity
David J Carol, WSP|Parsons Brinckerhoff

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White Paper:
Innovation for Jobs and Productivity:
Fostering High-Growth BC Businesses, Creating More High-Paying Jobs
Jock Finlayson, Business Council of British Columbia

Announcement Icon

Conference Partner News Release [PDF]
New Regional Effort Aims to Establish Cascadia Innovation Corridor

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Province of British Columbia and Washington State Memorandum of Understanding
News Release: Province of British Columbia
News Release: Washington State

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Blog: An idea whose time has come: A new Cascadia Innovation Corridor connecting Vancouver and Seattle
Brad Smith, President, Microsoft

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NEW BLOG: Next Generation Washington: Our perspective on this year's state legislative agenda (Includes update on Cascadia Corridor Initiative)
Brad Smith, President, Microsoft
January 12, 2017

Ready to Go?

Thanks for attending.
Stay tuned for more info for 2018!

Registration provided by the
Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce