The NRC‑Fields Mathematical Sciences Collaboration Centre is an innovative research hub that is home to scientists from the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) and the Fields Institute for Mathematical Sciences (Fields).
Housed at Fields Institute, the NRC‑Fields partnership enables world‑class research, the education and training of students and researchers, and the advancement of mathematical sciences and their application to solving challenges in health, energy, connectivity, and advanced manufacturing.
Fields promotes mathematical activity in Canada and internationally, helps expand the application of mathematics in modern society, and makes mathematics accessible and engaging for students and early career researchers.
The NRC‑Fields Collaboration Centre applies math and AI to projects in health, energy, and manufacturing:
- AI for precision discovery on associations in biological systems
- Mathematical modeling of SARS‑CoV‑2 lifecycle and COVID‑19 vaccine response
- Quantum‑enhanced design for materials and chemistry
- AI‑driven process optimization in friction stir welding
These projects support the following NRC Challenge programs:
- AI for Design Challenge Program
- Pandemic Response Challenge Program
- Cell and Gene Therapy Challenge Program
- Materials for Clean Fuels Challenge Program
- Mathematical sciences
- Computational sciences
- Artificial intelligence
- Data mining and analytics
Research staff biographies
Hsu Kiang (James) Ooi
James Ooi's research interest is in mathematical modeling and simulations of dynamical systems. He obtained his Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (MSEE) and Ph.D in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Texas at Dallas, followed by postdoctoral training at the University of Ottawa. He then joined IBM Canada and worked on high performance computing research before joining the NRC.
At the NRC‑Fields Institute Collaboration Centre, James is pursuing interdisciplinary research projects applying techniques from mathematical modeling, machine learning and quantum computing for disease modeling, material and drug discoveries.
Mohammad Sajjad Ghaemi
Sajjad Ghaemi's Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) and Masters in Science (M.Sc.) studies were in Theoretical Computer Science and Machine Learning at the University of Tehran and the Sharif University of Technology, respectively. He has worked on diverse problems from robotics to optical character and face recognition.
His Master's thesis was focused on graph based semi‑supervised learning algorithms that was inspired by scarcity of labeled information. Subsequently, his Ph.D research at Polytechnique Montréal was concentrated on identifying structures in large datasets where the labels were completely unknown. Prior to joining the NRC, Sajjad was a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University, School of Medicine where he developed generalized linear models for learning across multiple high‑throughput biological assays that was successfully implemented for a variety of bioinformatics projects.
At the NRC‑Fields Collaboration Centre, Sajjad is deeply inspired by a wide range of research topics, such as theoretical design of algorithms to develop applied methodologies for miscellaneous cutting‑edge, and high‑tech problems in science and industry pivoting on machine learning in conjunction with artificial intelligence.
Professor Deirdre Haskell is the Deputy Director of the Fields Institute, and a Professor of Mathematics at McMaster University. Her research in model‑theoretic algebra has spanned an academic career of over 20 years across three countries and numerous eminent institutions. She completed her Bachelor of Arts (BA) at Oxford University, then her Ph.D at Stanford University, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at Queen Mary College of the University of London. She joined McMaster University in 2000, where she was promoted to full professor and served several terms as Associate Chair (undergraduate) of the Mathematics and Statistics Department. During her career, Dr. Haskell has served on committees of the Association for Symbolic Logic, on the editorial board of the Bulletin of Symbolic Logic, and is currently a managing editor of Math Logic Quarterly.
As Deputy Director of Fields, Dr. Haskell will be overseeing the NRC‑Fields Collaboration Centre housed within the Institute.
National Research Council of Canada
Ashkan Ebadi, Research Officer, Data Analytics Centre
James Ooi, Team Leader, Data Science for Complex Systems
Patricia Oakley, Program Leader, AI for Design Challenge program
Fields Institute for Mathematical Sciences
Professor Deirdre Haskell, Fields Institute Deputy Director
- Fields Institute for Mathematical Sciences, University of Toronto
222 College Street
Toronto, ON M5T 3J1