Borealis AI is proud to announce the recipients of this year’s Borealis AI Fellowships. The Borealis AI Fellowship recipients, supported by Canada’s top researchers and academic institutions, aim to contribute to the advancement of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning and help unlock great human potential.  

Canada’s AI research ecosystem has a long history of producing cutting-edge work, leading to the highest concentration of deep learning researchers and students in the world (Invest in Canada, 2017).  

“At Borealis AI, we believe Canada’s continued leadership as a global destination for the study of AI requires ongoing support and investment from the business community. As one of the leading voices on AI in Canada, we are committed to helping grow the ecosystem – supporting those researchers, universities, startups and companies that are driving the next wave of exploration and innovation,” noted Dr. Kathryn Hume, Interim Head of Borealis AI.

This year’s Fellowships were awarded to students at nine Canadian universities, from Dalhousie University on the Atlantic to UBC on the Pacific. The ten Fellows – five women and five men – reflect diverse backgrounds and research areas, focusing their skills on problems that range from measuring the level of privacy in anonymous databases through to uncovering new ways to screen for prostate cancer. 

“We admire the great Machine Learning research being conducted within Canada’s academic programs and research institutes like AMII, MILA and Vector Institute. And we are keen to support the young research talent flowing out of our universities. By investing in cutting-edge deep learning researchers, their universities and advisors, our goal is to build and strengthen the broader Machine Learning research ecosystem in Canada,” added Dr. Eirene Seiradaki, Director of Research Partnerships at Borealis AI.


The Borealis AI 2021 Fellowships have been awarded to: 

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University of Alberta and amii

Faculty: Dr. Martha White
Borealis AI 2021 Fellow: Vincent Liu
Research topic: Developing batch reinforcement learning algorithms with theoretical guarantees


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Logo of University of British Columbia

Faculty: Dr. Purang Abolmaesumi
Borealis AI 2021 Fellow: Golara Javadi
Research topic:Applying Machine Learning to create novel techniques for prostate cancer detection


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Faculty: Dr. Arash Mohammadi 
Borealis AI 2021 Fellow: Parnian Afshar
Research topic: Deep learning-based radiomics for disease diagnosis


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Combined logos of Dalhousie University and Vector Institute

Faculty: Dr. Sageev Oore
Borealis AI 2021 Fellow: Chandramouli Shama Sastry
Research topic: Applying generative models to the identification of distribution shifts and the learning of robust representations


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Faculty: Dr. Joelle Pineau
Borealis AI 2021 Fellow: Lucas Page-Caccia
Research topic: The development of neural representations that adapt to new data 


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Faculty: Dr. Doina Precup
Borealis AI 2021 Fellow: Veronica Chelu
Research topic: Temporal credit assignment problems in reinforcement learning


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Logo of McMaster University

Faculty: Dr. Hans U. Boden
Borealis AI 2021 Fellow: Lindsay White
Research topic: Applying algebraic topology to measure privacy in anonymous databases


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Logo of Queen's University

Faculty: Dr. Xiaodan Zhu
Borealis AI 2021 Fellow: Xiaoyu Yang
Research topic: Natural language reasoning and incorporating external knowledge into neural networks


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Logo of SFU

Faculty: Dr. Yasutaka Furukawa
Borealis AI 2021 Fellow: Nelson Nauata
Research topic: Structured reasoning, structured generative models, geometry generation, and geometry reconstruction


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Logo of University of Waterloo

Faculty: Dr. Kimon Fountoulakis
Borealis AI 2021 Fellow: Shenghao Yang
Research topic: Combining discrete and continuous optimization methods for graph-based Machine Learning


“These Borealis AI Fellowships are a strong endorsement of the hard work being done at Canada’s Universities and Machine Learning Research Institutes. More importantly, they directly support Canadian research and research teams – like those at Dalhousie University – as they strive to advance the field of Machine Learning,” added Dr. Sageev Oore, Faculty at Dalhousie University and Vector Institute and Advisor to the Dalhousie University Borealis AI 2021 Fellow.

The new cycle of Fellowship applications for the next academic year will open this fall. Please refer to our site for details and information about applying to our Graduate Fellowship program.

About the Borealis AI Fellowships

These fellowships are part of Borealis AI’s commitment to support Canadian academic excellence in AI and Machine Learning. They provide financial assistance for exceptional domestic and international graduate students to carry out fundamental research, as they pursue their Masters and PhDs in various fields of AI. The program is one of a number of Borealis AI initiatives designed to strengthen the partnership between academia and industry and advance the momentum of Canada’s leadership in the AI space.

To learn more visit: Borealis AI Fellowships