Five UBC engineering experts named Canada Research Chairs


Five UBC Applied Science researchers have been appointed as new and renewed Canada Research Chairs, among 19 chairs at UBC. Among them is our very own Dr. Ali Ghoreishi Madiseh, an assistant professor in the Norman B. Keevil Institute of Mining Engineering at UBC Vancouver.

Dr. Ali Ghoreishi Madiseh, was renewed as a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Advanced Mine Energy Systems. His research focuses on developing novel solutions for maximizing energy efficiency and improving system performance, to ultimately help mining and petroleum industries to improve their processes, cut operating costs and reduce their environmental footprint.

The Canada Research Chairs Program invests up to $311 million per year to attract and retain some of the world’s most accomplished and promising researchers in engineering and the natural sciences, health sciences, humanities and social sciences.

Other appointed researchers from UBC Applied Science are Dr. Anna Blakney, Dr. Amanda Giang, Dr. Will Hughes, Dr. Carolina Tropini. 

Dr. Anna Blakney, an assistant professor in the School of Biomedical Engineering and the Michael Smith Laboratories at UBC Vancouver campus, was awarded a new Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Nucleic Acid Bioengineering. The Blakney Lab is “a multidisciplinary group of engineers, immunologists and molecular biologists investigating the interactions between RNA, biomaterials and the immune system to prevent and treat disease.”

Dr. Amanda Giang, an assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability, is a new Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Environmental Modelling for Policy. Her research addresses challenges at the interface of environmental modelling and policy through an interdisciplinary lens, with a focus on air pollution and toxics.

Dr. Will Hughes, director of the School of Engineering at UBC Okanagan campus, was named a new Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in DNA Engineering. His research involves designing DNA for material, memory, machine and medical applications.

He is also receiving $360,000 in support for this chair from the Canada Foundation for Innovation’s John R. Evans Leaders Fund.

Dr. Carolina Tropini, an assistant professor in the School of Biomedical Engineering and the Department of Microbiology and Immunology, was awarded a new Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Quantitative Microbiota Biology for Health Applications. Her expertise is in engineering new microbes and tools to treat the chronic diseases, allergies and immune disorders that have resulted from lifestyle changes over the past 100 years.

Tier 1 Chairs are awarded to “outstanding researchers acknowledged by their peers as world leaders in their fields.” For each Tier 1 Chair, the institution receives $200,000 annually for seven years.

Tier 2 Chairs are given to “exceptional emerging researchers, acknowledged by their peers as having the potential to lead in their field.” For each Tier 2 Chair, the institution receives $100,000 annually for five years, with an additional $20,000 annual research stipend for first-term Tier 2 Chairs.

This year, 40 new and renewed Canada Research Chairs were appointed at 22 institutions across Canada.

Congratulations to all appointed researchers!