CS 2020-2021 Academic Year in Review

October 29, 2021

The School of Computing Science at SFU is comprised of world-class researchers, talented instructors and a motivated group of staff, all dedicated to the success of its students and advancing cutting edge research in computer sceince. This past year was especially successful in terms of faculty and our student awards, as well as welcoming top researchers to our school. 

*All news events took place between 2020-2021

News Highlights

Andrei Bulatov Receives Gödel Prize

Computing Science professor Andrei Bulatov was one of five researchers to receive the Gödel Prize in 2021 for his research ocntributions to the field theoretical computer science. Bulatov developed an algebraic appriach to solve constraint satisfaction problems by using a group of methods based on universal algebra. 

Sheelagh Carpendale Named the 4th Royal Society of Canada Fellow in the School 

Sheelagh Carpendale combines visual arts and computing science to create visualizations that make data more broadly comprehensible, accessible and empowering. This year, she joined Eugene Fiume, Martin Ester and Jian Pei as the fourth Royal Society of Canada Fellow in the School of Computing Science.

New Chair Positions in the School of Computing Science

Computing science professor and AI researcher Mo Chen was named a Canada CIFAR AI Chair earlier this year. Computing science professor and human-computer interaction researcher Parmit Chilana was named the inaugural Ebco Eppich Research Chair in SFU’s School of Computing Science.

Read Chen's Story
Read Chilana's Story

Data Scientist Jiannan Wang Receives CS-CAN Outstanding Early Career Researcher Award

Computing science professor Jiannan Wang received the 2020 CS-CAN Outstanding Early Career Researcher Award to recognize his research breakthroughs. Wang’s mission is to speed up data science by greatly reducing the time spent on data preparation, as can be seen in his research project "DataPrep."

PhD Student Named Borealis AI Fellow

Computing science PhD student Nelson Nauata was awarded a Borealis AI Fellowship this year. His research is in3D computer vision where he develops machine learning algorithms for 2D/3D shape reconstruction and generation. Nauata is also a research intern at Facebook Reality Labs.

Data Science Researchers Win Best Paper Award at VLDB Conference

Computing science PhD students Xiaoying Wang, Changbo Qu and Weiyuan Wu, and computing science professor Jiannan Wang received the Best Experiments, Analysis & Benchmark Paper Award at the Very Large Data Bases (VLDB) Conference for their paper titled Are We Ready for Learned Cardinality Estimation?

Welcoming Our New Professional Cohort

150 new students joined the master’s program in professional computer science this fall. These students will learn applied skills in areas such as data science, computer vision, computer systems security and more. Hands-on training, including a co-op placement, prepares the students to work in the industry upon graduation. Applications for the 2022 cohort are now open!

Computing Science Researchers Receive $1.9 million Funding From BCKDF and CFI JELF Funds

Over the past two years, our researchers have received nearly $2 million in funding from the BC Knowledge Development and Canada Foundation for Innovation John R. Evans Leaders funds. This enables SFU to remain internationally competitive in areas of research and technology development that align with the universit's strategic priorities.

Read about CFI JELF 
Read about BCKDF

Computing Science Researchers Receive Over $1 Million in Funding for Agricultural Research

Computing science professors Martin Ester, Mo Chen and Ghassan Hamarneh received funding through the Innovate BC Ignite Grant, MITACS and TerraMera funding. The researchers are using machine learning to predict the best formulations to kill specific fungi on specific crops, to generate more environmentally sensitive and effective crop protection.


CS @ SFU By The Numbers

Notable Awards and Honours 
  • ACM SIGGRAPH Academy 2020: Eugene Fiume 
  • Google PhD Fellowship 2021: Zhiqin Chen 
  • IEEE PAMI Longuet-Higgins Prize 2020: Yasutaka Furukawa 
Academy and Society Fellows
  • 4 Royal Society of Canada (RSC) Fellows
  • 1 ACM Fellow
  • 2 IEEEE Fellows
  • 1 SIAM Fellow
  • 2 Fellows of the Canadian Academy of Engineering
  • 1 IEEE VIS Fellow
  • 1 ACM CHI Academy
  • 1 SIGGRAPH Academy

Test of Time Paper Awards

  • INFOCOM - 2015
  • ACM SIGKDD - 2015, 2017
  • ICCV Helmholtz - 2017
  • ICDE - 2018
  • IEEE PAMI Longuet-Higgins - 2020
  • ACL - 2021

Major Faculty Awards and Grants

  • 14 Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Discovery Accelerator Awards
  • 2 Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Steacie Memorial Fellowships
  • 6 Google Faculty Research Awards