Founder & CEO
Dr. Vivian Chan is Founder & CEO of Sparrho, the only platform in the world that democratizes science by aggregating, curating, and summarising cutting-edge research using augmented intelligence – the convergence of AI and human expertise. Dr. Chan founded Sparrho as a tool to help rectify the inherent barriers that exist within the scientific ecosystem.
Since founding the industry-leading start-up, Dr. Chan has had the opportunity to address the EU Ministers of Research and Innovation about Open Science, discussing the pressing need for scientific information to be accessible to all. She currently sits on the UK Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport’s Digital Economy Advisory Group.
In the Autumn of 2018, Dr. Chan was named one of the UK’s Top 100 BAME leaders in Technology by the FT and Inclusive Boards. She has also had the honor of being named in the MIT Tech Review’s 35 Under 35 Innovators in 2017, and the Top 5 Asian Stars in UK Tech in 2018.
Whilst at Cambridge, I was voted into the role of president of the Cambridge University Technology & Enterprise Club (CUTEC) from 2010-2011, and I was still in this role when I was approached by Alice Bentinck and Matthew Clifford of Entrepreneur First, who were seeking to recruit the nation’s top 30 graduates with entrepreneurship ambition. This was where I met my co-founder Niluka Satharasinghe, an experienced startup founder with a background in machine learning from the University of Oxford.
We founded Sparrho in 2013 to solve the problem of staying up to date with scientific literature in an increasingly multidisciplinary world. Inspiration for Sparrho came from Steve, a postdoctoral researcher in my research lab who would scan through a wide range of sources and bring personalised reading recommendations to each lab member every morning. When I described this problem to Nilu, he suggested ‘digitising Steve’. Sparrho has since evolved into a global platform that combines artificial and human intelligence to help research professionals and layman users alike discover the science that matters to them. As of 2017, we have raised a total of $3 million of funding, and Sparrho was selected as Consumer Product of the Year at the National Technology Awards in 2018.
Given Sparrho’s vision and mission, I’ve had the opportunity to address the EU Ministers of Research and Innovation about Open Science on multiple occasions, and I sit on the UK Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport’s Digital Economy Advisory Group.
I’ve also had the honour of being named in the MIT Tech Review’s 35 Under 35 Innovators in 2017, and the Top 5 Asian Stars in UK Tech in 2018. Previously, I was selected as a semifinalist for The Duke of York New Entrepreneur Of The Year Award in 2014 and one of Management Today’s 35 Women Under 35 in 2015.