NSB Logo Jesse Hirsh Jesse Hirsh

Jesse Hirsh

Speaker Exclusive

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Futurist & Digital Strategist

Jesse Hirsh is a futurist speaker, researcher and internet strategist. An experienced innovator and collaborator, his passion is educating people on the potential benefits and perils of technology. Jesse helps audiences understand what the future holds for them by sharing strategic, provocative and often humorous forward-thinking insights. He makes the discussion about new technology accessible and empowers groups to embrace the opportunities available to them in this technological age.

Keynote Speeches

Virtual Keynotes & Webinars
Contact us for more information about this speaker & their virtual presentations. Click here for some of the most popular formats for virtual events.
The Future of Innovation, Authority, and the Rise of Artificial Intelligence

Who we listen to and who we trust is changing, while at the same time, smarter systems and machines are emerging that are ready and willing to make decisions on our behalf. Automation and machine learning are having a disruptive and transformative effect on every sector and industry, driving innovation, and offering the potential for greater scale and efficiency. In some areas this technology is increasing capacity and capability, enabling new products and services, while fueling growth. Yet in other areas, automation will lead to dramatic consolidation and disruption, especially with regard to employment. There are also significant ethical issues to consider as we embrace these smart systems, especially when algorithms are wrong or exhibit prejudice. We’re in a unique historical moment to discuss and ultimately shape the role of automation in our lives and the opportunities and challenges it presents.

Participatory Cyber Security and Inclusive Computing

The increasing complexity of our technological society reinforces the necessity for responsible and participatory cyber security practices. The stakes have never been higher, and yet the number of incidents and data breaches continues to increase in severity and sensationalism. Part of the problem is that the average user is either alienated from, or lacks the necessary literacy, to follow current best practices. Yet we can’t blame the victim/user. As IT professionals we need to step up and adapt our methods to increase our effectiveness. An excellent example is the rise of participatory design and inclusive computing. As values and methodologies, these concepts argue that rather than design tools for users, we should be designing and building tools with users. While bias in AI is an obvious and important example of where this is currently being applied, cyber security is arguably just as important, and in need of immediate attention, or rather participation. In this session we’ll explore participatory cyber security, inclusive computing, what it means, and how it can be used by admins and developers.

Community Based Patient Centric Medicine: Ready or Not Here We Come!

Over the last two decades technology has enabled a wave of patient centric tools and approaches that have the potential to revolutionize medicine and health care. Yet the pandemic provided the emergency to apply and embrace many of these tools, in some cases with tremendous positive impact. One example is Vaccine Hunters, the volunteer, discord based, online community that helped North Americans get their vaccines as quickly and easily as possible. Another has been the patients and families struggling to get care and attention for their long term COVID related symptoms. Both of these give us glimpses into the future of health care, as technology enables patients to organize and mobilize communities of care. What does this mean, and how can traditional institutions adapt and leverage this emerging innovation?

Trust Drives Talent and Success in the Technology Enabled Flexible Workplace

The pandemic has transformed work and learning, compelling individuals and organizations to embrace technology, in some cases without necessary preparation or training. As a result, not everyone understands the new tools and environments, especially when it comes to surveillance and productivity monitoring technologies. The consequence of bad or annoying technology is the erosion of trust, which is tragic, given how crucial trust is for a functioning organization. The alternative is to leverage technology to foster trust, and to enable a broader organizational culture that rewards rather than punishes. As we exit this pandemic, there’s an opportunity to strike a balance between work and life, and in particular use technology to reinforce our humanity, and enable work environments that empower people to do their best.

Talent & Opportunity in the Post-Pandemic Workplace

The pandemic has transformed work and learning, and this will be particularly evident as we emerge into a post-pandemic world. One person’s disruption is another person’s opportunity. Similarly, some organizations have responded with incredible resilience, and are experiencing unprecedented growth and success.

Historically, great crises and catastrophes are followed by renaissances and periods of incredible innovation. What is the difference between success and failure, between frustration and excitement? Talent. This is true for both individuals and organizations.

How do you foster and harness your talent? How do organizations attract, develop, and retain talent? These are crucial questions during this transitional period as we remain in a pandemic but seek our path out of it!

Key takeaways from this presentation include:

  • Talent is universal but its development is not. It requires investment, focus, and support, combined with a culture that recognizes it.
  • Talent is increasingly expensive, which is great for individuals, but a challenge for organizations. Flexible and nurturing work environments are necessary.
  • Talent enables resilience in the face of volatility as well as potentially helping to manage ongoing digital and organizational transformation.
Working and Learning from Home: Best Practices and Smart Tools

There are a lot of reasons why working or learning from home can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be. There are a wide range of tips and tools that can make it easier and more effective. Perhaps the most essential is to not work alone, but rather find ways to maintain social contact and collaboration. With your peers, your customers, and even your family!? Similarly working from home brings a new set of security and privacy concerns that most people are neither prepared nor aware of. Not to mention the importance of the Internet and Wifi, which depending upon how you manage it, can be anything from great to a disaster. There’s lots to learn, and this interactive presentation helps you make the most of it.

The Future of Education is Each One Teach One

We live in a technology driven society where almost all the world’s knowledge is available to us on our mobile devices. The key question becomes, what are we going to do with it all? Knowledge alone is not enough, we need each other, as the secret to success is both social, and interactive. The world is our classroom, and technology allows us to be simultaneously students and teachers. While automation and artificial intelligence have an important role to play in making education as accessible as possible, we cannot forget that learning is what makes us human, and knowledge increases in value the more it is shared. That’s why the future of education is peer to peer, on demand, and in abundance. Learning as we go, sharing what we know, and building knowledge networks to ensure we all benefit from the process. This is the pedagogy of the Internet, and the path to our collective prosperity and success.


Get out of the City! The Future is Rural!?

This pandemic has reinforced why rural living has its advantages. However for a lot of city dwellers, it’s hard to imagine how this kind of radical change is possible. Yet thanks to the Internet, it’s a whole lot easier than many realize. From homesteading, to preppers, from tiny homes to van living, there’s a growing movement of people taking advantage of the digital world to reconnect with the natural one. Jesse Hirsh spent most of his life in downtown Toronto but a couple of years ago decided to move to a farm in the Ottawa Valley. In this interactive presentation he’ll share his experiences, the opportunities, and explain why the future is rural.

Understanding AI and Automation: No hype, only substance

The wheels are coming off the AI hype machine and many of the technology’s promises and potential are not coming to pass. As companies reassess their investment in automation and machine learning, it is worth digging into the substance of Artificial Intelligence. What it can do, what it can’t do, and why you need to manage bias and risk, even if your only relationship with AI is as a user of search engines and social media. While the limits of AI are becoming clear, there’s still much it can and will do, transforming society along with it. This raises the question of what businesses and governments need to know, in order to move past the hype, and use the technology responsibly.

Smart Farms: How technology is transforming agriculture

Farming continues to be a significant source of innovation as farmers hustle to make the most of their land and livestock. Robots, automation, and technology in general are enabling a new era in agriculture that has the potential to address global hunger, climate change, and ensure we all have good food to eat. However all of this depends on how the technology is used, and more importantly who controls it. As farms become smarter, the opportunity is not just better agricultural practices, but a better relationship between the grower and the eater, and everyone in between. The pandemic illustrated how brittle our food supply chain can be, and the economic crisis it induced has left many farmers struggling to survive. How can technology and transparency ensure sustainability and success?

Upgrading Government: Digital transformation and Emerging Technologies

For the past couple of decades, governments around the world have recognized the power and potential of digital technologies but have been slow to adopt them, for a wide range of legitimate reasons. However the pandemic has induced a genuine urgency as governments wrestle with the combined challenges of remote work for their civil servants and the demand from the public for digital service and program delivery. Most governments have been relatively successful in responding to this crisis, however there’s still no end in sight. How can governments continue with their upgrade amidst this ongoing pandemic? What is working? What’s not? What does the future hold for digital government? How can we adapt? How can we lead?

Customized Presentation

Jesse provides a unique and customized approach to his presentations.  View more industry-specific presentations here.

Platform Plus Presentations

Unique formats and ways to connect with audiences.
Workshop or Keynote | Learning at the Speed of Light: How Technology Accelerates Education
The challenge for organizations and educators in the face of rapidly evolving technology is not only how to keep up with changing tools, but also how to keep up with your employees and students themselves. How do you do more with less, while operating at a speed that makes critical thinking difficult? How do we bridge the digital divide and ensure that everyone has access to the education and empowerment our emerging society requires?
Workshop or Keynote | Technology, Leadership, and Authority: What it Takes to be Taken Seriously in an Era of Rapid Change
Jesse Hirsh has been engaged in a major research project focusing on the future of authority. The premise being that in a society that is constantly changing it is increasingly difficult to establish legitimate authority and provide the kind of leadership that is in great demand. Technology continues to have a disruptive impact on how and who people trust, leading to an unstable environment that requires a reconfiguration of how we relate to our leaders.
Video/Online Program
As a freelance journalist, Jesse's been doing radio and television work for a decade and a half, having worked for CFRB, Jazz FM, TVO, Global TV, Citytv, Rogers, OMNI, and MuchMusic. He knows what keeps audiences engaged with on-screen content.
Event Moderator
A researcher and broadcaster, Jesse Hirsh is a great moderator for discussions on a wide array of topic matter. He comes prepared with interesting facts and current events related to the subject at hand. Jesse keeps the conversation flowing, posing specific questions that bring out unique insights from each panelist. He makes sure the conversation is balanced and brings forward various opinions and points of view.
Panelist/In Conversation

Audience reviews:

  • I was very pleased that Jesse integrated our business of workers' compensation into his presentation and concluding remarks. I think he is a brilliant man with an ethical conscience. I would recommend him to other groups - especially those who value thinking forward and being analytical of their circumstances.

    - CEO, Association of Workers' Compensation Boards of Canada
  • Jesse knocked it out of the park. We had numerous comments from attendees about how much they enjoyed it and the insight they gained. The group was definitely more engaged than I have seen with any guest speaker we have used in the past. Total 10 out of 10 job by Jesse.

    - Newmarket Group/AFD Marketing
  • Listening to him on the radio is one thing, but to see him in person and to hear what he has to say on the use of technology and social media by public servants and the public in general was really thought provoking and eye opening. Everyone, and I mean everyone, was talking about it at the breaks, over lunch, and likely when they returned home to their families.

    - Health Canada
  • Feedback was exceptionally positive... Great ideas, made people think out of the box and his personal stories just added to his messages.

    - COACH: Canadian Health Informatics Association
  • I know of no one who understands modern society, the turn of events or especially the internet, better than Jesse. He is the smartest young man I have encountered over my professional career.

    - Chairman of Harris/Decima
  • Jesse Hirsh has a unique feel for the new media and what is happening. He is the "go to" guy on technology and its uses and abuses.

    - Hon. Bob Rae, P.C., O.C., O.Ont, Q.C.
  • Jesse was absolutely fantastic. Great ideas, great presentation, terrific speaking style. He was also very down to earth and approachable. Really we couldn't be happier with Jesse... I hope we will have an opportunity to engage him again in the future.

    - Adastra
  • His presentation was entertaining, engaging, provocative (as we requested) and very, very well received. He started a twitter discussion with his points, points that we are repeating in our conference summary and in the follow up action plan from the conference.

    - Communications Consultant, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada
  • I was very pleased that Jesse integrated our business of workers' compensation into his presentation and concluding remarks. I think he is a brilliant man with an ethical conscious. I would recommend him to other groups - especially those who value thinking forward and being analytical of their circumstances.

    - CEO, Association of Workers' Compensation Boards of Canada

Speaker Biography

Jesse owns and operates Metaviews Media Management Ltd., which focuses on research and consulting around new media business models, big data, and the strategic use of social media. He is also a co-founder of the Academy of the Impossible a peer to peer lifelong learning facility. Because of the impact technology has on our relationship with the world, Jesse believes that it should be used in responsible and creative ways. He encourages audiences to use technology as the catalyst for collaboration, education, and growing thriving organizations.

A speaker who brings excitement and curiosity to technical topics, Jesse is able to synthesize abstract concepts into digestible and actionable pieces of information. His insightful presentations feature valuable unique strategic insights relative for each audience. He is articulate, provocative and his area of expertise amongst the most affordable for the calibre of both delivery style and content.

Jesse was educated at the McLuhan Program at the University of Toronto. Jesse also recently completed a Masters degree at Ryerson University focusing on algorithms and predictive analytics.