At UBC Science, outstanding scientists and students strive to unravel the principles that underlie our universe - from the subatomic to the macroscopic, from pure mathematics to biotechnology, from ecosystems to galactic systems. Through the breadth and depth of our academic endeavours and the calibre of the people who make up our community, we take pride in discovering new scientific knowledge and preparing Canada’s and the world’s next generation of scientists.

A diverse range of highly ranked programs

With access to master’s and doctoral degrees through nine departments and 350 research groups, our graduate students work with world-class faculty to explore the basic sciences, and to pursue interdisciplinary and applied research across departments and units. UBC’s research excellence in environmental science, math, physics, plant and animal science, computer science, geology and biology is consistently rated best in Canada by international and national ranking agencies.

Committed to outstanding graduate training

UBC Science houses a wide range of prestigious NSERC Collaborative Research and Training Experience and related industry programs: from atmospheric aerosols to high-throughput biology, from biodiversity research and ecosystems services to plant cell wall biosynthesis, from quantum science and new materials to applied geochemistry. The options for enriched graduate training in industry related fields are almost endless.

World-class research infrastructure

Our affiliated institutes and centres include UBC's Michael Smith Laboratories, Stewart Blusson Quantum Matter Institute, Biodiversity Research Centre, Life Sciences Institute, Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences, Mineral Deposit Research Unit, and TRIUMF, Canada’s national laboratory for particle and nuclear physics.

Top research talent

UBC Science boasts more than 50 Canada Research Chairs, 12 fellows of the Royal Society of London, and has been home to two Nobel Laureates. Our graduate students have won 15 prestigious Vanier Scholarships.

A diverse, supportive community of scholars

UBC Science is committed to excellence, collaboration and inclusion. Women account for 41 per cent of the Faculty's graduate enrollments, and the percentage of international students has increased to 50 per cent over the past decade.

Mission
To nurture an exceptional scientific learning and research environment for the people of British Columbia, Canada, and the world.
 

Research Centres

Biodiversity, Evolution and Ecology

Computational Sciences and Mathematics

Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences

Genomics and Biological Sciences

Human-Computer Interaction

Life Sciences

Chemistry and Materials Science

Physics

Sustainability

Research Facilities

Designed to inspire collaboration and creativity across disciplines, the new Earth Sciences Building (ESB) lies at the heart of the science precinct on UBC’s Vancouver Campus. The $75 million facility is home to Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, Statistics, the Pacific Institute of the Mathematical Sciences, and the dean’s office of the Faculty of Science. ESB’s updated teaching facilities will help Canada meet the challenges of a transforming and growing resource sector. Just as importantly, the researchers and students working and learning in the new facility will offer a valuable flow of well-trained talent, new ideas, and fresh professional perspectives to industry.

Research Highlights

Receiving more than $120 million in annual research funding, UBC Science faculty members conduct top-tier research in the life, physical, earth and computational sciences. Their discoveries help build our understanding of natural laws—driving insights into sustainability, biodiversity, human health, nanoscience and new materials, probability, artificial intelligence, exoplanets and a wide range of other areas.

UBC Science boasts 50 Canada Research Chairs and 10 fellows of the Royal Society of London, and has been home to two Nobel Laureates. 

Graduate Degree Programs

Research Supervisors in Faculty

or browse the list of faculty members in various academic units. You may click each unit to view faculty members appointed in that unit. View the full faculty member directory for more search and filter options.
Name Academic Unit(s) Research Interests
Abraham, Ninan Department of Zoology Mammals, pathogens, genetic analysis, proper cell funtion, development, maintenance and proper functioning of T- and B-cells
Adams, Keith Department of Botany Molecular evolution, genome evolution, and gene expression
Adem, Alejandro Department of Mathematics Cohomology of finite groups, orbifolds, stringy topology, algebra, sporadic simple group, group actions, arithmetic groups, K-theory, homotopy theory, spaces of homomorphisms
Alava Saltos, Juan Jose Zoology, n.e.c.; Ecotoxicology; Environmental impact assessment; Population ecology; Marine ecology (including marine ichthyology); Global change biology; Ecological impacts of climate change; Global health; Veterinary parasitology; Marine Eco-toxicology, Ocean Pollution, Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry; Foodweb Bioaccumulation Modeling of Pollutants (Bioaccumulation Science); Persistent Organic Pllutants (POPs), Ocean Plastics & Microplastics., Hydrocarbons (PAHs); Mercury, Radionuclides (Cesium 137), Pharmceuticals and Person Care Products (PPCPs); Galapagos Science & Research; Eco-toxicology, Ecology & Conservation of Marine Mammals, Sea Turtles & Seabirds; Fishery Science and Management, Conservation Biology, Tropical Biodiversity; Climate Change Science, Adaptation and Mitigation in the Oceans, Marine Organisms & Fisheries; Aquatic Microbiology; Eco-toxicological Risk Assessment; Environmental Impact Assessments; Ocean Pollution Solutions; Ornithology and Zoology; Public Health, Tropical Parasitology and Environmental/Conservation Medicine.; COVID-19 related-multidisciplinary research
Algar, Russ Department of Chemistry Luminescent Materials; Bio/Chemical Sensing; Materials synthesis and biofunctionalization; Understanding the nanoparticle interface; New energy transfer configurations for sensing and imaging; Point-of-care diagnostic devices; Intracellular sensing
Allen, Susan Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences Atmospheric sciences; Oceanography; coastal oceanography; coupled bio-physics and chem-physics and all three models; forecast models; Oceans and Inland Waters; physical oceanography; Prediction and Climatic Modeling
Altshuler, Doug Department of Zoology Zoology; flight control; visual guidance; visual neuroscience; neuroethology; avian biomechanics; aerodynamics; wing morphing; motor control
Ameli, Ali Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences Geology; Applied Hydro-geochemistry; Climate Changes and Impacts; Environmental Tracer; Green Infrastructure; Ground Water and Water Tables; Groundwater Ecohydrology; Groundwater-Surfacewater & land Interaction; Hydro-geological Engineering; Hydrological Cycle and Reservoirs; Numerical analysis; Watershed Management
Andersen, Raymond Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences, Department of Chemistry Chemicals produced by marine organisms
Angel, Omer Department of Mathematics Probability theory, percolation, random graphs, random walks, particle processes, scaling limits
Angert, Amy Department of Botany, Department of Zoology Plant biology; Zoology; Biodiversity and Biocomplexity; biogeography; biological responses to climate change; Conservation Biology; Ecological and Ecophysiological Processes; evolutionary ecology; population biology
Anstee, Richard Department of Mathematics Discrete Mathematics, Extremal Set Theory, Graph Theory, Matching Theory
Aronson, Meigan Department of Physics & Astronomy heavy-ferromagnetic compounds; charge density waves; magnetic nanoparticles
Auger-Methe, Marie Department of Statistics, Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries Fisheries sciences; Statistics; Zoology; Animal movement; Polar ecology; Statistical Ecology
Auld, Vanessa Department of Zoology Neurosciences, biological and chemical aspects; Neurosciences, medical and physiological and health aspects; Zoology; Cell; Cell Biology; Development; Developmental Genetics; epithelia; Genetics; glia; in vivo imaging; Molecular Genetics; nervous system; Neurogenesis and Gliogenesis; permeability barriers
Austin, Philip Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences global climate; climate change; greenhouse effect; global warming; clouds; lightning; storms, Cloud physics, radiative properties of layer clouds, status cirrus formation, global climate, cloug aerosol feedbacks and climate
Aviles, Leticia Department of Zoology Community ecology (except invasive species ecology); Animal behaviour
Bachmann, Sven Department of Mathematics Mathematics and statistics; Mathematical Analysis; quantum phenomena; Mathematical physics; Quantum statistical physics; Topological states of matter
Balmforth, Neil Department of Mathematics Fluid mechanics, nonlinear dynamics and applied partial differential equations
Barker, Shaun Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences
Beckie, Roger Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences Ground hydrology, geotechnical engineering
Behrend, Kai Department of Mathematics Moduli spaces, Gromov-Witten invariants, string theory, Donaldson-Thomas invariants, Euler characteristics, categorification
Bennett, Michael Department of Mathematics Number Theory, Diophantine Approximation and Classical Analysis
Berbee, Mary Department of Botany Plant biology; Evolution and Phylogenesis; Microorganisms; Taxonomy and Systematics; fungi; molecular phylogenetics; mycology; systematics
Berciu, Mona Department of Physics & Astronomy Electronic and magnetic properties of condensed matter and supraconductivity; Physical sciences; condensed matter theory; polarons, bipolarons; strongly correlated systems

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Recent Publications

This is an incomplete sample of recent publications in chronological order by UBC faculty members with a primary appointment in the Faculty of Science.

 

Publication: STAR Protocols
UBC Author(s): Dan Bizzotto (Chemistry / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 3
Publication Date: 18 March 2022

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Publication: Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology -Part A : Molecular and Integrative Physiology
UBC Author(s): Colin Brauner (Zoology / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 10956433
Volume: 265
Publication Date: March 2022

View Publication
Publication: Journal of Mathematical Fluid Mechanics
UBC Author(s): Tai-Peng Tsai (Mathematics / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 14226928
Volume: 24
Publication Date: March 2022

View Publication
Publication: Machine Learning: Science and Technology
UBC Author(s): Roman Krems (Chemistry / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 3
Publication Date: March 2022

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Publication: Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology -Part A : Molecular and Integrative Physiology
UBC Author(s): Colin Brauner (Zoology / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 10956433
Volume: 264
Publication Date: February 2022

View Publication
Publication: Journal of Marine Systems
UBC Author(s): Yevhenii Pakhomov (Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 09247963
Volume: 226
Publication Date: February 2022

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Publication: Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research, Section B: Beam Interactions with Materials and Atoms
UBC Author(s): Reiner Kruecken (Physics & Astronomy / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 0168583X
Volume: 512
Page Range: 6-11
Publication Date: 1 February 2022

View Publication
Publication: Current Opinion in Biotechnology
UBC Author(s): Lindsay Eltis (Microbiology & Immunology / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 09581669
Volume: 73
Page Range: 43-50
Publication Date: February 2022

View Publication
Publication: Marine Policy
UBC Author(s): Ussif Rashid Sumaila (Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 0308597X
Volume: 136
Publication Date: February 2022

View Publication
Publication: Marine Policy
UBC Author(s): Ussif Rashid Sumaila (Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 0308597X
Volume: 136
Publication Date: February 2022

View Publication
Publication: Earth and Planetary Science Letters
UBC Author(s): Mitchall Darcy (Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 0012821X
Volume: 579
Publication Date: 1 February 2022

View Publication
Publication: Theoretical Population Biology
UBC Author(s): Sarah Otto (Zoology / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 00405809
Volume: 143
Page Range: 30-45
Publication Date: February 2022

View Publication
Publication: American Mineralogist
UBC Author(s): Lee Groat (Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 0003004X
Volume: 107
Page Range: 31-42
Publication Date: 27 January 2022

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Publication: Earth and Planetary Science Letters
UBC Author(s): Sean Crowe (Microbiology & Immunology / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 0012821X
Volume: 578
Publication Date: 15 January 2022

View Publication
Publication: Chemical Engineering Journal
UBC Author(s): Anthony Wachs (Mathematics / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 13858947
Volume: 428
Publication Date: 15 January 2022

View Publication
Publication: Cell Reports
UBC Author(s): Ninan Abraham (Zoology / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 38
Publication Date: 11 January 2022

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Publication: Chemical Science
UBC Author(s): Glenn Sammis (Chemistry / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 20416520
Volume: 13
Page Range: 188-194
Publication Date: 7 January 2022

View Publication
Publication: Ocean Science
UBC Author(s): Rachel White (Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 18120784
Volume: 18
Page Range: 1-28
Publication Date: 4 January 2022

View Publication
Publication: Astronomical Journal
UBC Author(s): Aaron Boley (Physics & Astronomy / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 00046256
Volume: 163
Publication Date: 1 January 2022

View Publication
Publication: Journal of Neurophysiology
UBC Author(s): Douglas Altshuler (Zoology / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 00223077
Volume: 127
Page Range: 130-144
Publication Date: January 2022

View Publication
Publication: Journal of High Energy Physics
UBC Author(s): Moshe Rozali (Physics & Astronomy / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 2022
Publication Date: January 2022

View Publication
Publication: Mathematische Annalen
UBC Author(s): Juncheng Wei (Mathematics / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 00255831
Publication Date: 2022

View Publication
Publication: IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics
UBC Author(s): Tamara Munzner (Computer Science / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 10772626
Volume: 28
Page Range: 747-757
Publication Date: 1 January 2022

View Publication
Publication: Pediatric Allergy and Immunology
UBC Author(s): B Brett Finlay (Michael Smith Labs / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 09056157
Volume: 33
Publication Date: January 2022

View Publication
Publication: Trends in Microbiology
UBC Author(s): Yuelin Zhang (Botany / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 0966842X
Volume: 30
Page Range: 3-5
Publication Date: January 2022

View Publication

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Recent Thesis Submissions

Doctoral Citations

A doctoral citation summarizes the nature of the independent research, provides a high-level overview of the study, states the significance of the work and says who will benefit from the findings in clear, non-specialized language, so that members of a lay audience will understand it.
Year Citation Program
2021 Dr. Mathur examined the evolutionary history of apicomplexan parasites, which are a large group of important animal parasites that cause malaria and other diseases. Her research used new single-cell techniques and has altered our fundamental understanding of how these parasites evolved. Doctor of Philosophy in Botany (PhD)
2021 Dr. Wang studied mathematical solutions of nonlinear differential equations that model chiral magnetic skyrmions. She provided a rigorous mathematical proof of the existence of skyrmions within the co-rotational symmetric class, and also examined their spectral and dynamical stability. This research contributes to the mathematics of chiral magnetism. Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematics (PhD)
2021 Dr. Maclean studied the mixing times of organic molecules and water within atmospheric aerosols, and the phase state of these aerosols. This research highlighted that aerosols in Earth's lowest layer of atmosphere, the troposphere, may be solid with long mixing times of organic molecules and water, contrary to typical assumptions in global models. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
2021 Some advanced cancers can be treated with the radioactive isotope called actinium-225, yet current actinium supplies are limited and rely on decades-old material from nuclear weapons. Dr. Robertson used TRIUMF's particle accelerator to develop alternative actinium production methods that could support widespread use of actinium-based therapies. Doctor of Philosophy in Physics (PhD)
2021 Dr. Matthey-Doret worked on methods to detect adaptation and showed that deleterious mutations are unlikely to produce signals that can be confounded with beneficial mutations. He also demonstrated that plasticity can evolve in a constant environment. Finally, he created a high performance and flexible software for population genetic simulations. Doctor of Philosophy in Zoology (PhD)
2021 Dr. Huang's research focused on metabolite analysis using capillary electrophoresis-mass spectrometry. He established reliable methods to identify and quantify small molecules from biological samples and developed a software tool to facilitate metabolomics data processing. His work contributed to the biomarker discovery for biomedical research. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
2021 Dr. Tran studied the microscopic assembly of cellulose nanocrystals derived from sustainable sources. He produced colourful materials ranging from thin films to stretchable elastomers for applications including optical sensors and filters. His findings contribute to the search for and development of sustainable and renewable alternative materials. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
2021 Dr. Wong studied the maximum possible number of certain mathematical objects when specific restrictions are imposed. Her investigation assists the community in understanding a number of important mathematical problems in extremal combinatorics, a field of study focused on the limits of finite objects. Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematics (PhD)
2021 Dr. Henriques used mathematical models to study the evolution of cooperative behaviour in nature. He explored how cooperation between organisms affected their ability to adapt to changing environments. His research showed that cooperation can be maintained by interactions between groups of organisms, and that it can promote species diversification. Doctor of Philosophy in Zoology (PhD)
2021 There are many who believe that genes commonly code for more than one functional product, through a process called alternative splicing. Dr. Bhuiyan studied the evidence for this claim, and showed that - despite what we learn in our textbooks - alternative splicing is not as common as we thought. Doctor of Philosophy in Bioinformatics (PhD)

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