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Shireen Santosham
Chief Innovation Officer at City of San Jose


Shireen Santosham is a tech optimist. In 2016, under Mayor Liccardo, she launched San José’s Smart City Vision initiative and has since championed affordable broadband, autonomous vehicle pilots, a comprehensive privacy policy, and apps and social media help residents interact with the city more easily.  In 2019, she led efforts to create a $24M Digital Inclusion Fund for San Jose to close the digital divide in the city by connecting 50,000 households to broadband and digital skills.

Prior to joining the city, she launched innovative initiatives across sectors. She led research to size the gender gap in internet access for women in the developing world while a Director at GSMA, helped to launch the Center for Government while at McKinsey & Company, helped to secure $50M to combat global overfishing while at Oceana, and helped to stand up the Allen Institute for Brain Science while an impact investor at Vulcan Capital.

Shireen Santosham was named to GovTech’s List of 25 Doers, Dreamers, and Drivers in 2018, and her work has been featured in Bloomberg Technology, KQED, and Ars Technica. She testified before the U.S. Congress and spoke at the Consumer Electronics Show, Mobile World Congress, the United Nations Beijing Conference on Women, Harvard University, UC Berkeley, Stanford University, and Columbia University.

Shireen Santosham holds an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School, an M.P.A in International Development from Harvard Kennedy School, and a B.S. and B.A. with honors from the University of Pennsylvania. She is a fellow at the Young Leaders Forum hosted by the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations and previously a term member at the Council on Foreign Relations and Global Governance Futures Fellow at the Bosch Foundation.

Shireen Santosham's Network

Agenda Sessions

  • Keynote Panel Discussion: Overcoming Challenges and Creating an Intelligent, Resilient City

    , 11:20am