Professor Peter Forsyth received the honour of Distinguished Professor Emeritus from the University of Waterloo at the spring 2017 convocation ceremony.
Professor Forsyth has made significant contributions to research, teaching and administration at Waterloo since arriving in 1987, following some time at Calgary and after completing his PhD at Western. He has had a prolific research career, including authoring nearly 130 journal publications, six refereed book chapters and 32 conference proceedings and professional publications. His research area is scientific computation, which he has linked closely with his interest in industrial applications. Early in his career he developed fast algorithms for sparse matrix solvers and their use in reservoir and groundwater simulations. Later he moved into the general area of computational finance, where he quickly became one of the world’s foremost experts.
Professor Forsyth is well known for his many contributions to administration at Waterloo, having served as director of the Institute for Computer Research, vice-director of the School of Computer Science, and as scientific director of the Institute for Quantitative Finance and Insurance. A milestone was his efforts, along with Johnny Wong, to manage the process of the naming the School of Computer Science, which resulted in a significant endowment.
Professor Forsyth was instrumental in creating the Computing and Financial Management program. Over his career, he supervised 13 PhD students to completion, as well as 45 MMath students. From 2008 to 2013 he was the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Computational Finance, the top journal in the field, and he has been an associate editor for a number of other journals.
“Peter’s many contributions throughout his academic career span the gamut, from brilliance in computational finance and scientific computing research, to innovative contributions in education, to constructive and dedicated administrative service,” said Mark Giesbrecht, Director of the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science. “His pioneering work helped establish computational finance as a new research area.”