The David R. Cheriton Faculty Fellowships are a prestigious recognition. The awards support the work of leading faculty in computer science with an emphasis on supporting research that addresses problems associated with designing and implementing efficient and reliable computing systems, along with their effective integration.

These fellowships help the University of Waterloo and the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science continue their innovations in information technology teaching and research.

Current Cheriton Faculty Fellows


Christopher Batty

photo of Professor Christopher BattyChristopher Batty is an Associate Professor in the Cheriton School of Computer Science. Professor Batty received his PhD from the University of British Columbia in 2010 and was a Banting Postdoctoral Fellow at Columbia University from 2011 to 2013. He has also spent time with two leading visual effects studios: Frantic Films (Canada) and Weta Digital (New Zealand).

Professor Batty’s research focuses on physical simulation techniques for applications in computer graphics and computational physics. A major thrust of his work considers the development of efficient numerical and geometric methods to represent and animate the diverse behaviors of liquids, including viscous and non-Newtonian flows, interactions between fluids and solids (hair, cloth, rigid bodies, etc.), surface tension effects, bubbles and foams, and more.

Elements of his research have been incorporated into commercial software for the visual effects industry, including Side Effects Software’s Houdini and Autodesk’s Maya/Bifrost, and used in numerous blockbuster movies.

Yaoliang Yu

photo of Professor Yaoliang YuYaoliang Yu is an Assistant Professor in the Cheriton School of Computer Science, a member of the AI group and the Waterloo AI Institute, and a Canada CIFAR AI chair at the Vector Institute. He obtained his PhD from the computing science department at University of Alberta, winning an Outstanding Thesis Award, and a PhD Dissertation Award from the Canadian Artificial Intelligence Association. He spent two postdoctoral years at Carnegie Mellon University before joining University of Waterloo. He has served in the program committee of major AI/ML conferences and received best reviewer awards from NeurIPS and ICML.

His main research area is in machine learning and optimization. Topics closest to his heart include (a) design and analysis of efficient, scalable and distributed gradient-type algorithms for convex and nonconvex optimization; (b) understanding the robustness of machine learning models under random and adversarial perturbations; (c) analysis and application of kernel methods; and lately (d) deep generative models where he is fascinated by a multitude of ways to push probability densities back and forth, using ideas from probability theory, convex analysis, and deep learning. Constantly pushed by his students, he has always enjoyed learning more about vision and natural language challenges.


Lap Chi Lau

photo of Professor Lap Chi LauLap Chi Lau is an Associate Professor in the Cheriton School of Computer Science and a member of the Algorithms and Complexity group. Before joining University of Waterloo, he was a faculty member at The Chinese University of Hong Kong for seven years. He has a PhD and MSc in Computer Science from University of Toronto, and a BSc in Computer Science from The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Lap Chi’s research interests are in design and analysis of algorithms, including algorithmic graph theory, approximation algorithms and combinatorial optimization. He is interested in studying different approaches to solve graph problems and seeing new connections between them. He has designed good approximation algorithms and fast exact algorithms for graph problems, using ideas from linear algebra, probability and optimization. Recently, he is interested in using ideas from spectral graph theory and convex optimization to design and analyze algorithms for combinatorial problems.

Daniel Vogel

photo of Professor Daniel VogelDaniel Vogel is an Associate Professor in the Cheriton School of Computer Science. He has published more than 60 papers in the area of Human Computer Interaction, focusing on fundamental characteristics of human input and novel forms of interaction for current and future computing form factors like touch, tangibles, large displays, mid-air gestures, and whole-body input. 

In addition to a PhD and MSc from the University of Toronto, he holds a BFA from the Emily Carr University of Art + Design, and he leverages his combined art and science background in his research. For example, he was awarded a major grant to build a $1.8 million lab to explore the intersection of HCI and Fine Art in spatial augmented reality. 

Daniel’s 2004 paper on interactive ambient displays is one of the ten most cited papers in the history of the ACM UIST conference, and he has received multiple honours including multiple best paper awards at ACM CHI; the Bill Buxton Dissertation Award (2010); a Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship (2011–13), an Ontario Early Researcher Award (2017); the Faculty of Mathematics Golden Jubilee Research Excellence Award (2018), and the CS-Can/Info-Can Outstanding Young Computer Science Researcher Award (2018).


Edward Lank

photo of Professor Ed LankEdward Lank is a Professor in the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science. He was the co-founder of the Human-Computer Interaction Lab, and continues to co-direct the lab.

He has a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario and an Honours Bachelor's degree in Physics from the University of Prince Edward Island. He joined the faculty at Waterloo in 2006. Prior to that, he was an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at San Francisco State University. He did post-doctoral work at Xerox PARC in 2001.

Edward’s primary research interests are in intelligent user interfaces, gestural interaction, and movement modelling. His current projects include work in mechanisms for leveraging reject rates to increase the perceived reliability of recognition-based user interfaces; he has explored the design of free-space gesture input languages (e.g., motion gestures) and mechanisms for treating motion gestures; finally, he and his students have explored techniques for predicting target locations in goal-directed movements (e.g., pointing) and speed profiles in constrained movements in interfaces. Alongside his primary research areas, Edward is broadly interested in all aspects of human-computer interaction. Among many other topics, he has recently explored persuasive technologies, sustainability, computer-supported cooperative work, usable privacy and security, sketch and diagram recognition, and human-in-the-loop information retrieval.

Edward is a past recipient of a National Science Foundation Career Award, the National Science Foundation’s most prestigious award for pre-tenure faculty. Alongside research, Edward has been active in administration, serving as Associate Director of Undergraduate Studies (2011–2013) and Associate Director of the School of Computer Science at Waterloo (2013–2015).

M. Tamer Özsu

photo of Professor M. Tamer ÖzsuM. Tamer Özsu is a University Professor at the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science. He was the Director of the Cheriton School of Computer Science from January 2007 to June 2010 and the Associate Dean of Research of the Faculty of Mathematics from January 2014 to June 2016.

His research is in data management focusing on large-scale data distribution and management of non-traditional data currently focusing on graph and RDF data. His publications include the book Principles of Distributed Database Systems (with Patrick Valduriez), which is now in its third edition. He has also edited, with Ling Liu, the Encyclopedia of Database Systems. He was the Founding Series Editor of Synthesis Lectures on Data Management (Morgan & Claypool), and is now the Editor-in-Chief of ACM Books. He serves on the editorial boards of three journals, and two book Series.

He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), and The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), an elected member of the Science Academy (Turkey), and a member of Sigma Xi. He was awarded the ACM SIGMOD Test-of-Time Award in 2015, ACM SIGMOD Contributions Award in 2008 and the Ohio State University College of Engineering Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2008.

Previous Cheriton Faculty Fellows

Cheriton Faculty Fellows Year
Urs Hengartner, Bernard Wong 2017–20
Tim Brecht, Charles Clarke 2016–19
Dan Brown, Pascal Poupart 2015–18
Michael Godfrey, Jesse Hoey 2014–17
Tamer Öszu, Ihab Ilyas 2013–16 
Raouf Boutaba, Kate Larson 2012–15 
Gladimir Baranoski, Peter Forsyth 2011–14     
Robin Cohen, Alejandro Lopez-Ortiz 2010–13
Ken Salem, John Watrous 2009–12  
Charles Clarke, Yuying Li 2008–11 
 Frank Tompa, Raouf Boutaba 2007–10