Vidya ShankarNarayan is the Assistant Deputy Minister, Information Systems Branch and CIO at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. She is a forward-thinking and creative leader implementing the Digital and Data strategy to advance the growth, sustainability and competitiveness of the agriculture and agri-food sector. She plays an active leadership role in championing innovation within the agriculture sector, the Government of Canada and with international associations such as the OECD.
Over the past 25+ years, Vidya has held multiple positions in both the private and public sectors, where she encouraged experimentation and horizontal collaboration to identify new and innovative ideas, and led multiple high-profile transformation initiatives related to service delivery, digital technologies and modernisation. Previously, Vidya worked at Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Employment and Social Development Canada, where she passionately focused on the digital and data economy, and service delivery, with a vision of designing and implementing simpler, efficient and human-centric services. She has also held executive positions at the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat and Global Affairs Canada, and in the private sector at Nortel Networks and Tata Consulting Engineers. She holds a Masters degree in Architecture, specialising in Design and Technology from Carleton University.
Vidya is an active community member, participating on various boards including the World Economic Forum and the Global Blockchain Congress. She is regularly invited to national and international events to express her fresh and avant-guard perspectives on the Digital and Data economy.
In her spare time, Vidya practices yoga and is a champion for diversity and inclusion of under-represented groups.