What is Spark Festival?

Spark Festival is a two week program of events and activities covering all things startup, innovation and entrepreneurship. Now in its 4th year, the festival brings together people, ideas & resources, to connect, share, learn and inspire.

The 2017 program included over 100 events covering topics from Fintech to Social Enterprise, AI to Blockchain, HealthTech to VR and everything in between. With over 9000 attendees from all stages of the startup journey, Spark Festival 2017 was an incredible celebration of the size and diversity of the local startup ecosystem.

Spark Festival 2018 will run from October 19 to November 2, across all of Sydney and in locations throughout of NSW. If you're keen to get involved, shoot through an email and let's talk!

Spark Festival Values and Objectives

Inclusiveness and diversity always shines throughout our program: alongside events for people already working in the startup sector, Spark Festival welcomes anyone who is curious to find out what it's all about to take a peek and see where their skills might find a new home.

Spark Festival is a project of Spark Festival Ltd, a not for profit whose objectives are to

  • provide opportunities for individuals of diverse background, age and gender to pursue and succeed in a career of entrepreneurship through events and other activities
  • connect entrepreneurs, industry groups, government and service providers, leading to the growth of vibrant startup communities across Australia
  • position Australia as a leading startup nation, fostering, attracting and retaining globally- recognised, talented individuals
  • support with industry development to help transition Australia’s industries towards a digital and technology future
  • help to provide training and awareness and skills for individuals of all ages, primary & secondary children and workers from any industry to help retrain and transition to new industries

As a not for profit, Spark Festival is guided and supported by its board.

The programming committee, known as the Spark Festival Track Leads, meets throughout the year to oversee the development of a festival programme that explores every corner of the ecosystem.

Keeping it all together is Program Director, Maxine Sherrin, the person to speak to if you'd like to get involved in 2018!

Program Director

Maxine Sherrin
Maxine Sherrin
Program Director at Spark Festival, Co-founder of Web Directions....more

Spark Festival 2018 Track Leads

Liz Jakubowski

Education

Liz Jakubowski
Founder,
Ribit.net
Stephen Rutter

Education

Stephen Rutter
Head of Experience,
Sydney School of Entrepreneurship
Sarah Lacroix

Cleantech

Sarah Lacroix
Community & Events Manager,
EnergyLab
Johanna Pitman

Smart Cities

Johanna Pitman
Program Director,
CityConnect, BlueChilli
Adam Beck

Smart Cities

Adam Beck
Executive Director,
Smart Cities Council Australia New Zealand
Lauren Montino

Asian Connections

Lauren Montino
Community & Operations Manager,
Haymarket HQ
Daniella Traino

Cybersecurity

Daniella Traino
General Manager, Cybersecurity,
aizoOn Australia
Tom Dawkins

Social Enterprise

Tom Dawkins
Co-Founder,
StartSomeGood
Chantal Aboucher

MediaTech

Chantal Aboucher
Founder,
The Studio
Deborah Young

RegTech

Deborah Young
General Manager,
The RegTech Association
Paul Conyngham

AI/Machine Intelligence

Paul Conyngham
Founder,
Sydney Machine Learning Group
Andrea Myles

China

Andrea Myles
CEO,
China Australia Millennial Project
Vanessa Ronan-Pearce

FinTech

Vanessa Ronan-Pearce
Director of Partnerships and Events,
FinTech Australia
James Zaki

Internet of Things

James Zaki
Organiser,
OzBerry IoT Meetup
Adriana Belotti

Blockchain

Adriana Belotti
Organiser,
Blockchain Professionals Meetup
Alex Young

AR/VR

Alex Young
Founder,
AWE.media
Patrick Wang

Space

Patrick Wang
CEO,
Space Ops
Jackie Randles

Research

Jackie Randles
Manager,
Inspiring Australia

Spark Festival Board

Alex Scandurra
Alex Scandurra
Chief Executive Officer at Stone & Chalk, an independent, not-for-profit Fintech hub...more
Chris Clark
Chris Clark
Founder and CEO at Fusesport, the online management solution for sporting event organizers...more
Maria MacNamara
Maria MacNamara
Co-Founder at Hypereal, helping organisations use modern technology and digital practice to transform how they work....more
Eitan Bienstock
Eitan Bienstock
Founder and CEO at Everything IoT, a global platform for IoT innovation connecting corporates with startups and providing thought leadership, corporate advisory and startups mentorship....more
Murray Hurps
Murray Hurps
Program Director for FUELD, Westpac's data accelerator program. Former CEO of Fishburners....more
Kristy Dixon
Kristy Dixon
Partner at Marque Lawyers, heading up their corporate/M&A practice...more
Anne-Marie Elias
Anne-Marie Elias
The Chief Disruptor...more