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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
Matthews, Philip Department of Zoology Animal physiology, respiration; Insect biology; Animal physiology, biophysics; Comparative biomechanics; Animal physiological ecology; Comparative Physiology; biomechanics; Insect physiology; Respiratory Physiology
Matthews, Benjamin Department of Zoology Genomics; Neurosciences, biological and chemical aspects; Neurosciences, medical and physiological and health aspects; Zoology; Aedes aeygpti mosquitoes; Arboviral pathogens; Chikungunya; Comparative Physiology; Dengue fever; Genome of mosquitoes; Yellow fever; Zika
Mattison, Thomas Department of Physics & Astronomy Subatomic physics, Particle & Nuclear Physics, Applied Physics
Mayer, Ulrich Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences Geology; groundwater contamination; groundwater remediation; hydrogeology; low-temperature geochemistry; mine waste management
McAllister, Murdoch Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries Statistical methods for fisheries risk assessment, estimation, decision analysis and management strategy evaluation
McDonald, Daniel Department of Statistics High dimensional data analysis; Computational methods in statistics; Statistical theory and modeling; Machine learning; Epidemiology (except nutritional and veterinary epidemiology); Methods and models for epidemiological forecasting; Estimation and quantification of prediction risk; Evaluating the predictive abilities of complex dependent data; Application of statistical learning techniques to time series prediction problems; Investigations of cross-validation and the bootstrap for risk estimation
McDougall, Scott Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences Other earth and related environmental sciences, n.e.c.; Geotechnical engineering; Debris flows / floods; Geohazards; Landslide-generated waves; Landslides; Natural and man-made geological hazards; Rock avalanches; Shoreline erosion; Tailings dam breaches
McGrenere, Joanna Department of Computer Science Computer and information sciences; computer science; computer supported cooperative work (CSCW); human-computer interaction; interactive technologies for older users and people with cognitive disorders; personalized user interfaces; universal usability
McIver, Jess Department of Physics & Astronomy General relativity and gravitational waves in astronomical and space sciences; Gravitational wave astrophysics; Multi-messenger astronomy; Characterization of large-scale physics instrumentation; data science
McKenna, Janis Department of Physics & Astronomy Physical sciences
Mehrkhodavandi, Parisa Department of Chemistry Chemical sciences; Inorganic and Organometallic Compounds; Polymers; Chemical Synthesis and Catalysis; Bio-based polymers; Bioproducts; catalysis; Green Chemistry; Inorganic and Organometallic Chemistry; Polymer Chemistry and Characterization
Mehta, Aastha Department of Computer Science Networking, Security & Privacy, Systems security, Data privacy, Operating systems, Distributed systems
Michal, Carl Department of Physics & Astronomy Soft condensed matter; Development and applications of spectroscopic and structural techniques; Solid-state NMR; NMR and MRI of brain tissue; NMR methods and instrumentation; Biological and functional materials
Michaletz, Sean Department of Botany Plant physiological ecology; Plant biology; Surface processes; Natural hazards; Ecophysiology; Ecosystem ecology; climate change; macroecology; Geophysics; Scaling; Fire
Miller, Freda Michael Smith Laboratories, Department of Medical Genetics
Milner, Valery Department of Physics & Astronomy Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics; Ultrafast Quantum Coherent Control; Ultrafast Spectroscopy
Mitchell, Ian Department of Computer Science safety critical systems, assistive technology (mobility), robotics, scientific computing, cyber-physical systems, Mathematical software, computational science and engineering, hybrid and cyber-physical systems, verification and validation, reproducible research, level set methods, robotic path, planning
Mizumoto, Kota Department of Zoology Cell and Developmental Biology
Mohn, William Department of Microbiology & Immunology pollutant biodegradation, pollutant bioremediation, biological treatment of forest industry effluents and wastes, microbial ecology, environmental biotechnology, forest soil microbial ecology, tuberculosis, microbial genomics, Microbial ecology
Momose, Takamasa Department of Chemistry Spectroscopy, Chemical physics
Munzner, Tamara Department of Computer Science Human-centered computing; visualization; information visualization; visual analytics; data science
Murphy, Michael Department of Microbiology & Immunology Bacteriology; Enzymes (including kinetics and mechanisms, and biocatalyst); Alternatives to antibiotics; Bacterial pathogenesis; Biological and Biochemical Mechanisms; Functional and Structural Proteomics; Microbial metal metabolism
Murphy, Gail Department of Computer Science Programming languages and software engineering; Software Development; knowledge worker productivity; software design; software engineering; software evolution
Murugan, Mathav Department of Mathematics Mathematics and statistics; boundary theory; Metric geometry; potential theory; probability theory and analysis; quasiconformal mappings; relationship between behavior of Markov processes and the geometry of the underlying state space; Sandpile models
Ng, Raymond Tak-yan Department of Computer Science Data mining and analysis, health informatics, text summarization, text mining

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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: Physical Review D
UBC Author(s): Matthew Choptuik (Physics & Astronomy / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 24700010
Volume: 109
Publication Date: 15 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Proceedings of the ACM on Interactive, Mobile, Wearable and Ubiquitous Technologies
UBC Author(s): Bo Robert Xiao (Computer Science / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 7
Publication Date: 12 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: ACS Infectious Diseases
UBC Author(s): Lindsay Eltis (Microbiology & Immunology / Faculty of Science), Tao Huan (Chemistry / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 10
Page Range: 107-119
Publication Date: 12 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Microbiology spectrum
UBC Author(s): Michael Murphy (Microbiology & Immunology / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 12
Page Range: e0314823
Publication Date: 11 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
UBC Author(s): Douglas Altshuler (Zoology / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 09628452
Volume: 291
Publication Date: 10 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Science of the Total Environment
UBC Author(s): Villy Christensen (Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 00489697
Volume: 907
Publication Date: 10 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
UBC Author(s): Sean Crowe (Microbiology & Immunology / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 121
Publication Date: 9 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Chemistry - A European Journal
UBC Author(s): Derek Gates (Chemistry / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 09476539
Volume: 30
Publication Date: 8 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Chemical Geology
UBC Author(s): Sean Crowe (Microbiology & Immunology / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 00092541
Volume: 643
Publication Date: 5 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Proceedings of the ACM on Programming Languages
UBC Author(s): William Bowman (Computer Science / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 8
Page Range: 2395-2424
Publication Date: 5 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Science (New York, N.Y.)
UBC Author(s): Reinhard Jetter (Botany / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 383
Page Range: 108-113
Publication Date: 5 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Cell
UBC Author(s): B Brett Finlay (Michael Smith Labs / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 00928674
Volume: 187
Page Range: 17-43
Publication Date: 4 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Advanced Materials
UBC Author(s): Amani Hariri (Chemistry / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 09359648
Volume: 36
Publication Date: 4 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Cold Spring Harbor perspectives in biology
UBC Author(s): Vanessa Auld (Zoology / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 16
Publication Date: 2 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: The Journal of general virology
UBC Author(s): Selena Sagan (Microbiology & Immunology / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 105
Publication Date: 1 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Oecologia
UBC Author(s): Brian Hunt (Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 00298549
Publication Date: 2024

View Publication
Publication: Water Resources Management
UBC Author(s): Mark Johnson (Institute for Resources,Environment & Sustainability / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 09204741
Volume: 38
Page Range: 717-731
Publication Date: January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Nature Astronomy
UBC Author(s): Aaron Boley (Physics & Astronomy / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 8
Page Range: 10-12
Publication Date: January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Wetlands
UBC Author(s): Mark Johnson (Institute for Resources,Environment & Sustainability / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 02775212
Volume: 44
Publication Date: January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Nature Sustainability
UBC Author(s): Ussif Rashid Sumaila (Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries / Faculty of Science)
Volume: 7
Page Range: 45-52
Publication Date: January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Global Change Biology
UBC Author(s): Katie Marshall (Zoology / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 13541013
Volume: 30
Publication Date: January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology
UBC Author(s): James Stewart Scoates (Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 00107999
Volume: 179
Publication Date: January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Ecology Letters
UBC Author(s): Mary O'Connor (Zoology / Faculty of Science), Christopher Harley (Zoology / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 1461023X
Volume: 27
Publication Date: January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Astrophysical Journal Letters
UBC Author(s): Jeremy Heyl (Physics & Astronomy / Faculty of Science)
ISSN: 20418205
Volume: 961
Publication Date: 1 January 2024

View Publication
Publication: Nature Ecology and Evolution
UBC Author(s): Andrea Reid (Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries / Faculty of Science)
Publication Date: 2024

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
2023 Dr. Somo investigated the adaptation of aerobic capacity in fish in the intertidal environment. Focusing on the effects of oxygen, temperature, and body size, these studies illuminate how marine organisms in this environment have evolved to thrive under harsh, variable conditions, with lessons for how species might fare under climate change. Doctor of Philosophy in Zoology (PhD)
2023 Dr. Poisson has investigated various uses of surface-initated polymerization techniques to solve current challenges in organic optoelectronics. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
2023 Dr. Ao studied plant immune receptors - molecular tools that plants use to recognize and defend against pathogens. He characterized two genes that enable fine-tuned immune responses. These findings not only deepen our understanding of how plants activate defense in the face of threats, but also contribute to the engineering of crop protection. Doctor of Philosophy in Botany (PhD)
2023 Dr. Gatz-Miller investigated the biogeochemical and physical relationship between soil, water, and plants using reactive transport numerical modelling. Dr. Gatz-Miller's work highlights the benefit of strategic complexity in numerical modelling to explore these nonlinear, interrelated, and diverse processes. Doctor of Philosophy in Geological Sciences (PhD)
2023 Dr. Xu studied how plant fungal pathogens cause diseases. She innovatively established a fast gene discovery pipeline and identified many genes required for the full virulence of the fungal pathogen. In the future, these genes can be targeted to develop new fungicides and provide efficient and long-lasting plant protection. Doctor of Philosophy in Botany (PhD)
2023 Dr. Eremondi developed the theory of gradual dependently typed programming languages. Under this paradigm, programmers can use types to write correctness specifications, but can smoothly migrate the checking of those specifications between compile time and run time. This furthers the goal of making it easier to prove that software is free of errors. Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science (PhD)
2023 Dr. Jeworrek advanced computational and statistical methods to make high-resolution precipitation forecasts more skillful, reliable, and efficient. Her work focused on BC's coastal and mountainous regions and can be used to improve water-resource management and flood risk mitigation. Doctor of Philosophy in Atmospheric Science (PhD)
2023 Dr. Egoriti developed new particle accelerator targets and diagnostics that improve the quality and quantity of radioisotopes produced at TRIUMF, Canada's particle accelerator center. This work has enabled new scientific experiments that previously failed, and improved key metrics allowing for quicker and more effective research activities. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
2023 Dr. Shin researched titanium-based oxide thin films, with distinct properties for advanced electronic devices. Using molecular beam epitaxy, he grew these films and analyzed their electrical and magnetic traits through electrical transport and x-ray spectroscopy. These findings enhance comprehension of oxide films in cutting-edge electronics. Doctor of Philosophy in Physics (PhD)
2023 Dr. Gupta's thesis presents ways to improve the physical robustness of fluorescent polymer nanoparticles or "Pdots". It contributes to a better understanding of how their fluorescence properties degrade, and demonstrates that the brightness of Pdots is ideal for enabling smartphone-based diagnostic technologies for prospective applications in health care. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)

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