The Marsland Fellowship in Information Technology provides a visible, enduring legacy for the Marsland family’s support of information technology at the University of Waterloo. The fellowship also provides a key element in supporting the expansion of the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science.
Current Marsland Fellow
Professor Éric Schost’s field of research is computer algebra: very broadly, this is the study of a collection of fundamental mathematical problems that are amenable to exact computation. This subject covers a wide range of questions, from algorithm development to low-level code optimization techniques, programming languages design, establishing lower bounds, etc. Along with new algorithms and their implementations, research in computer algebra also goes hand-in-hand with the development of new mathematics.
Professor Schost’s long-term objective is the development of efficient families of algorithms (as measured by complexity analyses), with high-performance implementations, for questions at the heart of computer algebra: fundamental algorithms on polynomials and matrices, and solving systems of linear or non-linear equations.
Much of this work is motivated by some important families of applications. He has studied problems inspired by motion planning (which amount to testing whether a mechanism can move freely between two given configurations), leading to the first algorithmic improvements since the 1990s. Another area of interest is problems coming from number theory or finite field arithmetic, where he was involved in the first large-scale point-counting on some families of algebraic curves, and gave new algorithms for the construction of finite fields.
Éric Schost received his PhD from École polyechnique, in France, in 2000. He was Maître de Conférences there until 2006; from 2006 to 2015 he was with the Computer Science Department at Western University, where he held a Canada Research Chair in Computer Algebra. He joined the Cheriton School of Computer Science in 2015.
Éric Schost received the Outstanding Young Computer Science Researcher Prize from CS-Can in 2009, and was General Chair (2011) and Program Chair (2018) of the main conference in Computer Algebra, ISSAC.
Previous Marsland Fellows