IWD 2023: Viviantie Sarjuni, General Manager of SCENIC

Disruptr:  Viviantie Sarjuni

Job Designation:  General Manager of Sabah Creative Economy and Innovation Centre (SCENIC)

Industry: Startup/Innovation

Can you share more about yourself?

I am a Sabahan currently studying in Scotland. I am currently leading the Sabah Creative Economy and Innovation Centre (SCENIC), a government entity under the Sabah Ministry of Science, Technology, and Innovation (KSTI), with the objective of advancing technology, creativity, and startups in Sabah.

Having previously served in MaGIC (now known as MRANTI) I am passionate about building not only talents but also a thriving startup ecosystem in Sabah. Personally, I am keen to explore ways to alleviate poverty and promote economic growth in Sabah through innovation and social enterprise.

Can you share Top 3 achievements?

  • I am proud to share that the agency I am currently leading has been recognized with a Merit Award for the Most Impactful Public Sector in Driving Digital Adoption (State Category) at the Top in Tech Innovation Awards. Despite limited resources and being relatively new, this achievement demonstrates what can be accomplished by engaging with stakeholders in the ecosystem and working creatively to overcome challenges. I believe this serves as an inspiration to other agencies, showing them that they too have the potential to succeed in digital innovation.
  • I am honored to have been chosen as one of 37 Malaysians to be granted a prestigious Chevening Award from the UK Government. This incredible opportunity has allowed me to pursue my Master’s degree in Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the University of Strathclyde, located in Glasgow, Scotland. It is a privilege to study at one of the top universities in the UK and I am grateful for this amazing experience.
  • Through collaboration with KSTI and MRANTI, we brought in our influence to establish the first Digital and IOT sandbox in Borneo, which is the eighth in Malaysia, an initiative under the National Technology and Innovation Sandbox (NTIS).

Can you share your biggest regret?

  • I don’t have any regrets. I believe that every experience has something to teach me. For instance, when I encounter failures, I view them as opportunities to learn, improve, and grow.

What’s one advice you would give to young women who are just starting out in their careers?

  • To young women who are embarking on their careers, my advice is to be courageous and confident. Don’t allow others to dictate your future or tell you what you can or cannot achieve. I personally grew up in an environment where there was a preference for males over females.
  • With five siblings, I recall seeing people express sympathy towards my mother because she didn’t have a son. This experience fueled my belief that women are equally valuable to men and their standing in society should not be diminished.
  • Therefore, I encourage you to pursue your aspirations fearlessly. Seek out a mentor or coach who can offer guidance and support, and serve as a sounding board for feedback and ideas. Remember that your gender does not determine your potential for success, and with hard work, dedication, and perseverance, you can achieve your goals.

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