Ziya tong

Ziya Tong

Author of The Reality Bubble | Award-Winning Broadcaster

Award-winning host Ziya Tong has been sharing her passion for science, nature and technology for almost two decades. Best known as the co-host of Daily Planet, Discovery Canada’s flagship science program, she brings a wealth of knowledge, experience, and enthusiasm to the stage. Tong speaks on leadership, how to shift perspective, and the role of science and technology in society in her riveting and eye-opening talks.

Before co-hosting Daily Planet, Tong served as host and field producer for PBS’ national primetime series, Wired Science, produced in conjunction with Wired magazine. In Canada, Tong hosted CBC’s Emmy-nominated series ZeD, a pioneer of open source television, for which she was nominated for a Gemini Viewer’s Choice Award. Tong also served as host, writer, and director for the Canadian science series, The Leading Edge and as a correspondent for NOVA scienceNOW alongside Neil deGrasse Tyson on PBS.

In the spring of 2019, she participated in CBC’s annual “battle of the books.” After a national four-day debate, she won Canada Reads.

In May 2019, Tong released her bestselling book The Reality Bubble. Called “ground-breaking” and “wonder-filled”, the book has been compared to The Matrix. It takes readers on a journey through the hidden things that shape our lives in unexpected and sometimes dangerous ways. Tong also won CBC Canada Reads that year for defending Max Eisen’s holocaust memoir, while her own book was short listed for the Charles Taylor Prize in 2020.

Tong received her master’s degree in communications from McGill University, where she graduated on the Dean’s Honour List. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of the World Wildlife Fund and is the founder of Black Sheep.

The Nature of Leadership

Human beings are not the only animals with leaders and followers. Many other species —from ants, to pigeons, to water buffalo — have leaders within their groups as well. Ziya Tong takes a fun and informative look at some of the most successful traits that have evolved in other species. In the process, we’ll see how lessons from the animal kingdom can shape human behaviour so that we can become better leaders ourselves.

Visions of Reality

From virtual reality to the Internet of Things, technology is shifting our perception and our ability to communicate at an astonishing rate. And while we are the only species able fly at the speed of sound and communicate at the speed of light, technology also puts limits on our freedoms as well.

In this talk, Ziya Tong shows how we often fall prey to the “dazzle” of new tech, without deeply considering the ramifications of technology and infrastructure. Every technology works within the service of power. From spy satellites to facial recognition technology, Tong lifts the veil on who these new technologies are serving.

What Are Our Blind Spots?

Bestselling author of The Reality Bubble, Ziya Tong shows how our limited human senses give us a warped perspective of reality. As a society, Tong argues, we operate with blinders on. As she notes, in the 21st century, there are cameras everywhere, except where our food comes from, our energy comes from, and where our waste goes. By examining ten of humanity’s biggest blind spots Tong puts a spotlight on how our species’ industrialized life support system has come to jeopardize life on earth itself.

The Big Blue: Adventures of a Science Communicator

Award-winning host Ziya Tong has served as a host and producer on four science shows. In this talk, she shares clips from her work in the field, and talks about how she transformed a hobby — diving — into an integral part of her career. From tagging beluga whales in the Arctic to swimming with giant hammerhead sharks, she shines a light on critical habitats and offers a close-up look at what is happening to the marine environment.

Doom and Bloom: Envisioning a Better World

Are we doomed? Activist and author Ziya Tong argues that we are not. At least, not yet. From the latest science to the most innovative technologies, Tong shows us that there is a way out of the environmental crisis we face. She argues that in the past, humanity faced much greater perils and we always have found ways to unite and stand up to the challenge. This uplifting talk will ground the audience with courage, a new vision, and the knowledge that we do have the capacity and power to turn things around.

Host and Emcee

Celebrity Services

Ziya Tong is available for sponsorships, endorsements, public relations and media spokesperson campaigns, product launches, voiceovers, celebrity appearances, and more.  Please visit The Spotlight Agency for more details.