Congratulations to all of our doctoral graduates.

Doctoral students contribute to UBC and the world through their research. Each doctoral student leaves a legacy at UBC Okanagan, with their research laying the groundwork for future generations of graduate students to build on.

In recognition of the accomplishments of its doctoral graduates, UBC has instituted publishing and sharing doctoral citations during graduation ceremonies. Doctoral citations summarize the nature of the independent research, the contribution to knowledge made by the candidate in the dissertation, and the intellectual and/or practical value of the work.

Below is a list of the doctoral citations for students graduating in 2021 and students who graduated in 2020.

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Student Name Specialization Graduation Year Citation
Dr. Adebola Olutayo
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical Engineering 2021

Dr. Olutayo developed a new channel model that can accurately describe the environment’s effects on communication signals of emerging wireless systems. These channel models play a vital role in designing, implementing, testing, and deploying these new wireless communication systems.

Dr. Alireza Sadeghifar
Doctor of Philosophy
Chemistry 2021

Dr. Sadeghifar developed a hierarchy of potential models for the adsorption of H2 molecules on ionic surfaces. The proposed models were then used in the molecular simulations of these systems to answer questions that remained in the field for more than 15 years. The proposed models can now be used as a predictive tool to design future experiments and to explore more important properties of these layers.

Dr. Andy Meng
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical Engineering 2021

Dr. Meng developed an efficient modelling approach to accurately represent the dynamic phenomena of electric converters. He subsequently applied his method to study the severe fault impact on a large-scale power grid with connections to offshore renewable power plants, thereby lowering the overall computational cost while delivering the accurate response of the system.

Dr. Anil R. Prasad
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2021

Dr. Prasad studied a novel Spark Plasma Sintering Technique for the fabrication of nuclear fuel pellets and set up the first facility in Canada with that capability. His research resulted in the fabrication of several prototype fuel pellets with enhanced performance that might be powering future nuclear reactors. This technology was transferred to Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL) and is being actively pursued by Dr. Prasad at CNL

Dr. Arash Dalili Shoaei
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2021

Dr. Arash Dalili developed a Lab-on-a-Chip, which by utilizing dielectrophoretic force can manipulate, focus, and separate microparticles and biological cells. His developed device is portable, offers high throughputs and separation efficiency. Therefore, it has vast applications in point-of-care diagnostic and environmental monitoring devices.

Dr. Armin Rashidi Mehrabadi
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2021

Dr. Rashidi developed novel characterization and modelling techniques to investigate process-induced defects in the manufacturing of aerospace textile composites. The versatile modelling framework resulting from his research enables the identification of the optimum combinations of material, processing, and part geometrical factors that can lead to defect-free aerospace composite structures.

Dr. Bruno Carturan
Doctor of Philosophy
Biology 2021

Dr. Carturan built a complex computer model to show that coral species diversity in a reef makes the reef more resilient to disturbances such as storms and bleaching events. His research determined aspects of diversity that confer reef resilience and has concrete applications for the management of coral reefs as the climate changes.

Dr. Candice Quin
Doctor of Philosophy
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 2021

Dr. Quin explored the relationship between maternal fat consumption and offspring health by examining differences in infant gut microbes and immune responses in acute and chronic diseases. She found that unsaturated fats reduce immune priming in infants, increasing the risk for poor health outcomes. These studies challenge current dietary guidelines.

Dr. Carmela White
Doctor of Philosophy
Psychology 2021

Dr. White examined how various individual characteristics, such as personality, influenced the benefits of a well-being intervention. Dr. White found that while some nuances were discovered, on average, people randomized to a 6-month well-being program became happier and more satisfied with their lives, regardless of their personality traits.

Dr. Damien Leitner
Doctor of Philosophy
Psychology 2021

Dr. Leitner’s research demonstrated how eye-tracking technology predicts performance on cognitive testing in young and older adults, as well as recovery of function after a stroke. This research addressed a need to explore modern technology during the assessment of cognition to further understand brain-behaviour relationships.

Dr. Geoff Coombs
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2021

Dr. Coombs showed that acute passive heat stress improves markers of vascular function in both young, healthy individuals and those with spinal cord injuries. The underlying mechanisms will inform longer-term protocols. However, activation of the sympathetic nervous system and chronic heat exposures are important considerations for future research.

Dr. George Luka
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2021

Dr. Luka developed simple and inexpensive on-chip-based biosensors and point-of-care diagnostic devices for the detection of pathogens. He subsequently applied his techniques to detect Cryptosporidium in water samples.

Dr. Haibo Feng
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2021

Dr. Feng developed a building-level life cycle assessment framework with the integration of Building Information Modelling and Environment Production Declaration. The proposed framework was applied to the residential building sector to support policymakers and industrial practitioners reduce the overall building environmental impacts.

Dr. Iva Lihter
Doctor of Philosophy
Earth and Environmental Sciences 2021

Dr. Lihter examined deep crustal rocks now exposed in the High Himalaya to decipher the mountain-building processes recorded therein. Her work makes new discoveries on the genesis and age of rocks within the Himalaya and expands the current understanding of the processes active both prior to and during the formation of the mountain belt.

Dr. Jacqueline Kanippayoor
Doctor of Philosophy
Psychology 2021

Dr. Kanippayoor developed the first disorder-specific quality of life measure for individuals with a borderline personality disorder diagnosis. The measure has shown promising potential for identifying and monitoring long-term changes in life quality among those pursuing early treatment. Most importantly, the measure offers individuals an alternative way of describing their current quality of life in terms that are not focused exclusively on symptom outcomes.

Dr. Jennifer Arpink
Doctor of Philosophy
Psychology 2021

Dr. Arpink explored two novel approaches of measuring social support with a sample of women who had experienced intimate partner violence. Having found some benefit to measuring social support in a more nuanced manner, Dr. Arpink suggested future directions for research in this area, as well as some changes and improvements in how we measure social support for survivors of intimate partner violence.

Dr. John Henderson
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2021

Dr. Henderson incorporated theoretical insights from Entrepreneurship, Finance, Strategic Management and Data Science disciplines in the development of a predictive firm behaviour model. Dr. Henderson introduced one of the first applications of machine learning as well as the conceptual paradigm of candor to a significant management theory known as Entrepreneurial Orientation. In doing so, Dr. Henderson presents a text-based/semantic relationship to qualify entrepreneurial rhetoric and its association to future entrepreneurial firm behaviours.

Dr. Joshua Stroh
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2021

Dr. Stroh utilized an inexpensive mining by-product to develop a new aluminum alloy that boasts superior performance at engine operating conditions. Combined with extensive residual stress and fitness-for-service analyses, this research will help the transportation industry provide a greener and more sustainable means of transportation.

Dr. Kabilan Sakthivel
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2021

Dr. Sakthivel developed an easily fabricable, high throughput stretchable platform for applying cyclic tensile strain to cells encapsulated in 3D hydrogels. He extended the platform to study the combinatorial effects of different cell microenvironment factors on cell function, which could be helpful in engineering artificial tissues and organs.

Dr. Kimberley Kaseweter
Doctor of Philosophy
Psychology 2021

Dr. Kaseweter examined the prosocial treatment of patients in pain using a sample of undergraduate students and medical residents. She found that the effect of empathy on helping behaviour was moderated by individual differences in pain perception, emotion regulation, and psychopathic traits – potentially contributing to disparities in the treatment of pain.

Dr. Kristen Mancuso
Doctor of Philosophy
Biology 2021

Dr. Mancuso studied the migration of a common songbird, the Gray Catbird, and an endangered songbird, the Yellow-breasted Chat. She found that catbirds migrate to northeastern Mexico while chats migrate to western Mexico. Her research contributes to understanding the full annual cycle of both species plus informs recovery efforts for the chat.

Dr. Marina Le
Doctor of Philosophy
Psychology 2021

Dr. Le’s research examined people’s attitudes and decisions of mentally ill offenders. Her work highlighted the importance of educating people about the Not Criminally Responsible on account of Mental Disorder defence.

Dr. Matiyas Bezabeh
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2021

Dr. Bezabeh developed and applied new performance-based wind design (PBWD) frameworks for tall buildings. His research is the first to explore the dynamic response of tall mass-timber buildings using wind tunnel tests. Overall, his dissertation demonstrated the possibility of achieving sustainable and economic tall buildings through PBWD.

Dr. Max Crawford
Doctor of Philosophy
Psychology 2021

Dr. Crawford used three studies to investigate if individuals underestimate the benefits of spending time in nature. The results indicate that individuals with a higher connection to nature are more accurate at predicting their emotional response to nature. As well, spending time in nature increases an individual’s happiness and sense of relaxation more than spending time in urban settings.

Dr. Menno Salverda
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2021

Dr. Salverda’s research examined three aspects of a framework for dialogue to unsettle taken-for-granted knowledges with a group of central Okanagan professionals: affinity groups, critical learning processes and the role of the facilitator. The findings highlight considerations for community development and critical educational strategies.

Dr. Mohammad Hossein Aboonasr Shiraz
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2021

Dr. Mohammad Shiraz developed a new battery generation of Lithium/Sodium-Selenium batteries, which tries to tackle the issues that arise from current Li-ion batteries. He applied several methods to improve the life long, capacity and stability of mentioned batteries. The work can be implemented in today’s battery technology and make electric vehicles more proficient.

Dr. Mohammed Saif
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical Engineering 2021

Dr. Saif developed efficient network coding methods to minimize delay while reducing the burden on the core-network of 5G mobile networks. He subsequently applied his methods to effectively and efficiently stream popular videos to users and optimize data rate. Through extensive simulations, he showed that his proposed methods achieved improved performances over existing schemes.

Dr. Monica Good
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2021

Dr. Good studied the difficulties faced by Indigenous speakers as they interact in the Mexican legal setting and the role Indigenous interpreters play in encouraging language and cultural revitalization. This study frames the role of interpreters as cultural gatekeepers and proposes a collaboration between State and Indigenous jurisdictions.

Dr. Mypinder Sekhon
Doctor of Philosophy
Kinesiology 2021

Dr. Sekhon examined the pathophysiology of hypoxic-ischemic brain injury after cardiac arrest in humans using invasive multimodal neuromonitoring. This research provided sentinel insights into the cerebrovascular physiology of ischemic brain disease.

Dr. Piyaruwan Perera
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2021

Dr.Perera developed a life cycle thinking-based approach to plan recharging infrastructure for electric vehicles in urban communities. His research outcomes aid urban communities in reducing their transport-based carbon footprint.

Dr. Qi Zhang
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2021

Dr. Zhang researched how the performance of bridge structures can be improved under earthquake hazards. He investigated the dynamic responses of post-tensioned concrete columns and proposed design guidelines using the performance-based design framework. This research enables engineers to build more resilient bridges against earthquake events.

Dr. Rachid Ouache
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2021

Dr. Ouache developed an integrated fire risk management framework for Smart-Green multi-unit residential buildings. He established robust machine learning algorithms and solutions to help guide policies. His research illuminates decision-makers’ roles and enhances investments for specific fire prevention, protection, and intervention strategies.

Dr. Rob Mothersole
Doctor of Philosophy
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 2021

Dr. Mothersole investigated three unique proteins from the bacterium Fusobacterium nucleatum in order to identify if they may be viable as drug targets. This research may help in the development of novel treatments of several conditions associated with Fusobacterium nucleatum, such as periodontal diseases, preterm births, and colorectal cancer.

Dr. Saeed Rahbarimanesh
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2021

Dr. Rahbarimanesh developed a cost-effective and efficient numerical solver for simulating the phase change phenomenon in liquefied natural gas (LNG) flows. His solver has been extensively used to investigate the detailed physics of LNG phase change behaviour in a wide range of industrial applications, aimed at facilitating reliable design and optimization of future green LNG-based fuel systems.

Dr. Salman Alfihed
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical Engineering 2021

Dr. Alfihed examined a variety of semiconductors and polymeric materials for the integration of photoconductive terahertz devices and microfluidics as an optoelectronic sensor on a chip. The research results illuminate the role and importance of the terahertz sensors’ architecture for identifying material spectra at the micro-scale.

Dr. Sara Vieira
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2021

Dr. Vieira studied the Portuguese community in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), its organizations and Luso-Canadian transnationalism. She suggests there are differences between Luso-Canadian transnationals conceptualizations of identity and bilingualism and the established Portuguese community. Other factors such as gentrification, suburbanization, and acculturation impact this community.

Dr. Sarah MacQueen
Doctor of Philosophy
Mathematics 2021

Dr. MacQueen used a stochastic individual-based model to show that the location of wildflower enhancements around a crop and the mechanisms by which bumblebees select foraging sites can strongly affect the pollination services they provide. This work helps blueberry growers with planting decisions and informs future mathematical modelling efforts.

Dr. Serveh Naghshbandi
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2021

Dr. Naghshbandi designed an interdisciplinary framework and developed a multilayered participatory model to identify the main conceptualizations of space from doctoral students’ points of view and make their voices heard. She argues that learning space is an indicator of support and has the potential to improve the well-being of students. 

Dr. Severin Nowak
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical Engineering 2021

Dr. Nowak’s research developed novel measurement-based techniques to optimize and control power distribution systems using distributed energy resources.

Dr. Shahin Zareie
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2021

Dr. Zareie developed a smart bracing system conceptually to preserve structural health and stability. A prototype of the system has been fabricated, and its behaviour has been confirmed, characterized by experimental tests under the compression and tension loadings.

Dr. Stephanie Bishop
Doctor of Philosophy
Chemistry 2021

Dr. Bishop studied the production of the neurotoxin BMAA by cyanobacteria from Canadian lakes and the Andes in South America. She found that ecosystem complexity as well as nutrient and light availability influence the production of BMAA, which can help us understand how to decrease the risk of human exposure to this toxin in diverse environments.

Dr. Tara Carpenter
Doctor of Philosophy
Psychology 2021

Dr. Carpenter examined how the experience of social ostracization influences our moral judgments of racial in-group and out-group others. This research helps us to understand how we form impressions of others’ moral character and the impacts of ostracization on well-being.

Dr. Tim Abbott
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2021

Dr. Abbott compared and optimized multiple biological processes to help protect human health and the environment. His work will help wastewater treatment facilities recover energy and better treat organic matter, chemical contaminants, and recalcitrant forms of nitrogen and phosphorus.

Dr. Yekenalem Abebe
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2021

Dr. Abebe developed a spatiotemporal decision support framework for managing urban stormwater infrastructures focusing on risk assessment, climate change adaptation, and funding strategies. The framework provides a proactive asset management approach and helps municipalities in allocating scarce public resources effectively.

Dr. Yousif Alwai Alcheikhhamdon
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2021

Dr Hamdon investigated the use of Mixed Matrix Membranes for separating propylene off propane in petrochemical facilities. The multi disciplinary research covered the aspects of membrane material development, process design and simulation. The research aimed at reducing the separation process energy demand and carbon footprint

Dr. Yuanshi Zhang
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical Engineering 2021

Dr. Zhang’s research proposes an adaptive droop control method to regulate the active power flowing through the direct current cable without using any additional power electronics devices. This research greatly reduces the capital cost and power loss compared with the traditional power flow control methods.

Dr. Alexandra Yacyshyn
Doctor of Philosophy
Kinesiology 2020

Dr. Yacyshyn showed that the response of the neuromuscular system to fatiguing exercise depends on the biological sex and age of participants as well as the muscle group tested. This research improves our understanding of fatigue and will aid researchers and rehabilitation specialists in tailoring their protocols to better assess muscle function.

Dr. Araz Sholehkerdar
Doctor of Philosophy
Mathematics 2020

No citation available at this time.

Dr. Ayelign Mengesha Adal
Doctor of Philosophy
Biology 2020

Dr. Adal developed molecular markers for lavender fingerprinting and diversity studies, and examined the biosynthesis of monoterpenes – the major components of lavender essential oils. He cloned and functionally characterized six genes responsible for the production of precursors and key monoterpenes that are critical steps to improve lavender oils.

Dr. Bara Emran
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2020

Motivated by today’s ever-increasing demand for deployment of unmanned aerial vehicles in broad applications, Dr. Emran developed new control algorithms to improve their performance and stability. Through his research, he has contributed significantly to their safety and reliability subject to severe external disturbances and system failure. His research results enable the use of aerial vehicles in number of civilian applications including package delivery, transportation and pipeline monitoring.

Dr. Bruno Carturan
Doctor of Philosophy
Biology 2020

No citation at this time.

Dr. Chad Davis
Doctor of Philosophy
Mathematics 2020

No citation available at this time.

Dr. Cong Xu
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2020

Dr. Xu developed numerical models to better understand the behaviour of bolted wire mesh for rock slope stabilization. He revealed the force and displacement response of steel wire mesh with various bolt patterns and spacing when the mesh is subject to loads from an unstable rock. This research has significant implications for improving the effectiveness of mesh on rock slopes using a proper bolt arrangement.

Dr. Cynthia Bourne
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr. Bourne researched the influence of a set of design principles on the outcomes of a global service learning project situated in a challenging context. Her findings revealed that the three core values of respect, reciprocity, and reflection, were central to a creating a good global service learning project, worth doing for both students and in-country partners.

Dr. Donna-Leigh Goodman
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr. Goodman was passionate about improving chemistry education. Specifically, she studied the widespread use of misleading and conflicting concepts found in college chemistry teaching materials and classroom practices. In particular, Dr. Goodman’s research involved identifying the “threshold concepts” that best support students’ language development about and conceptual understanding of chemistry.

Dr. Esraa Jamal
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr.Jamal developed a business case for sustainability that linked the transportation system and projects with the quality of life,specifically by incorporating social case analysis to the economic,strategic,and implementation cases of conventional business case development methodology.Her methodology will help decision makers make informed decisions when planning and evaluating transportation projects.

Dr. Etienne Myette-Cote
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

No citation at this time.

Dr. Hamidreza Hafezinasab
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical Engineering 2020

Battery chargers and Data Centers need direct current electricity for operation, thus converters are used to change the alternating input mains into Direct Current (DC) electricity. Electricity is available in single-phase (two wires) and three-phase (three-wire) form. Three-phase is more economical for high power applications.Dr. Hafezinasab’s study focuses on high efficiency three-phase AC/DC converters.

Dr. Holli-Anne Passmore
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr. Passmore’s work involves taking notice of nature in daily routines. Her multi-national research builds a strong case that simply noting emotions evoked by everyday nature strengthens feelings of connection and elevation. Her validated Noticing Nature intervention has a powerful effect on wellbeing, even without spending more time in nature.

Dr. Iman Aghanejad
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical Engineering 2020

No citation available at this time.

Dr. Isadora Louise Quintans
Doctor of Philosophy
Biology 2020

Dr. Quintans studied the differences between the interactions of plants with beneficial and pathogenic fungi, and how beneficial fungi enhance plants defenses against pathogens. She identified thousands of genes that can cause or prevent fungal infections in plants. She also found novel antimicrobial peptides that represent promising targets for the pharmaceutical and agricultural industry. Together, these data will lead to the development of better strategies to control fungal diseases.

Dr. Jeannette Angel
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr. Angel’s research engages people in social change through community-based artworks and processes. The dissertation contributes an interdisciplinary design methodology and a model for nurturing creative experiential learning. This work can inform sustainability researchers situated in and across environmental, educational and health sectors.

Dr. Jiayu Ye
Doctor of Philosophy
Biology 2020

Dr. Ye studied how nutrients, especially fat, affect metabolic disorders such as heart diseases. Her conclusion challenges the current dietary fat guidelines on promoting polyunsaturated fats, which conversely worsen the preexisting chronic diseases such as hypertension and diabetes. Her research makes people rethink dietary choices and provides a potential therapeutic target on managing metabolic diseases.

Dr. Joanne Taylor
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr Taylor investigated food security and food sovereignty in the Creston Valley of British Columbia during the renegotiation of the Columbia River Treaty in the Creston Valley of British Columbia. Dr Taylor developed an innovative framework tool using key socio-economic factors which helped to assess food security and define the challenges to food producers in the area.

Dr. Johnathan Laumer
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical Engineering 2020

Dr. Jonathan Laumer examined the distribution of chemical bonds present within various types of thin-films of carbon, using an optical characterization technique. Through a characterization of the shape and form of the resultant spectra, he was able to quantitatively delineate between different types of thin-film carbon. This work has broad implications, both from basic materials and applications perspectives.

Dr. Lindsey Reinholz
Doctor of Philosophy
Mathematics 2020

Dr. Reinholz developed a method for constructing non-congruent numbers that have arbitrarily many distinct prime factors. This technique allows known non-congruent numbers to be extended to produce infinitely many new non-congruent numbers, thereby considerably broadening the collection of non-congruent numbers that can be generated and described.

Dr. Ma Hui
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical Engineering 2020

In multi-antenna systems, secure transmission designs are important for physical layer security which is a promising information security technique. In this thesis, Dr. Hui’s research focused on the secure transmission designs for three jamming signal aided multi-antenna systems, which can be applied in the next generation communication networks.

Dr. Maria Martignoni
Doctor of Philosophy
Mathematics 2020

Dr. Martignoni studied the risks and benefits associated with the use of organic fertilizers consisting of commercially grown arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. She developed a series of mathematical models to determine when the introduced fungal fertilizers can coexist with native fungi and boost productivity, versus when the use of fungal fertilizers constitutes a biodiversity risk and it is ultimately detrimental to crop yield. Dr. Martignoni’s work sheds light on strategies for the management of a broad range of mutualistic communities that play a critical role in agriculture, such as below-ground microbes, bees, or other animal pollinators.

Dr. Mary Kjorven
Doctor of Philosophy
Nursing 2020

Dr. Kjorven examined the complexities of navigating her roles of clinical nurse specialist in geriatrics and daughter while caring for her hospitalized older adult father within a health care system that is risk adverse. Her research will help guide collaboration with patients and families in team based and person and family centered care.

Dr. Mathieu Aubin
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr. Aubin studied the relationship among queer small presses, poetry, and lesbian and gay liberation movements in Vancouver. His study argues that small presses in Vancouver contributed to the development of liberation movements by creating queer-friendly cultural communities, publishing books, and circulating these objects to LGBTQ2+ readers.

Dr. Matt Husain
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr. Husain’s interdisciplinary research investigates poverty and class relations in the context of development aid projects in Bangladesh. Dr. Husain theorizes dual hegemony, an alliance between the political and economic elite and the international aid industry, to explain why development aid to impoverished countries benefit aid facilitators and donors, as well as a few wealthy clients, rather than empowering aid recipients on the ground.

Dr. Md. Lukman Sarker
Doctor of Philosophy
Biology 2020

Dr. Sarker investigated the structural and regulatory genes that control the biosynthesis of essential oil constituents in lavender. His work resulted in the discovery of important genes that control oil composition in this plant. Dr. Sarker also developed a comprehensive transcriptome database, which facilitates the cloning of genes expressed in lavender leaves and flowers.

Dr. Michael Tymko
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr. Tymko’s thesis encompassed data collected on three separate high altitude expeditions in the United States, Nepal, and Peru. The research objective was to determine the impact of hypoxia on blood vessel health in lowlanders and high altitude indigenous populations. The primary was that that blood vessel function was impaired at high altitude, which was mediated by elevated neural activity.

Dr. Moein Ahmadi Pour Shirazi
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2020

Dr. Ahmadipour examined the effects of web and flange openings on structural capacity of timber I-joists,and proposed a design approach for such beams. He argues that the current wood design code does not address the existence of such openings effectively. His research paves the way for a safer design approach for such important building components.

Dr. Mohamed Mohamed
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2020

Dr. Mohamed tackled some of the hurdles of current microscale tissue engineering methods. He developed efficient technologies and biomaterials for the biofabrication of 3D bioprinted and microfluidically produced constructs that can treat or replace an affected tissue. His research is a step towards translating research into real solutions for several medical problems.

Dr. Mohammad Haji Mohammadi Sani Abadi
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2020

Dr. Haji Mohammadi developed a mathematical formulation to perform numerical simulation of turbulent bubbly flows in complex geometries. He subsequently implemented the formulation into a parallel C++ code to run various real-life test cases. This novel formulation allows us to perform simulations of fluid flow with much less computational burden.

Dr. Mohammad Kamali
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2020

Dr. Kamali developed a multi-level decision support framework to quantify and benchmark the life cycle sustainability of residential modular buildings. This framework assists in selecting optimal construction methods and also improving the life cycle sustainability performance of modular buildings.

Dr. Nathalie Hager
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr. Hager examined the proposed transformation of art history into World Art History, a new approach to the study of all the worlds art based on seeking out connections between objects and their makers across nations, world regions, and time. Dr. Hager argued that World Art History signals a paradigm shift within the discipline of art history.

Dr. Ngandu Balekelayi Celestin Balek
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2020

No citation at this time.

Dr. Nurmunira Muhammad
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2020

Dr. Muhammad developed a novel chemical additive using locally available bentonite soil for mitigating the problematic subgrade soil. Through Dr. Muhammad’s work the additive was employed as a soil stabilization technique for improving the strength and resilient modulus of the silty sand soil. She subsequently studied the mechanism of strength development in weak soil through microstructural analysis.

Dr. Osei Boakye Fordwour
Doctor of Philosophy
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 2020

No citation available at this time.

Dr. Peyman Yousefi
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2020

Dr. Yousefi’s research was on development of an integrated management plan for urban water resources. He worked on analytical models to detect for any leakage and failure through the pipeline in water distribution systems. His research led to the development of an analytical technique, allowing for lower costs, higher accuracy and more reliability.

Dr. Ran Wei
Doctor of Philosophy
Psychology 2020

Dr. Wei studied deceptive language, focusing on changes in a person’s language pattern during deception. His research explored modeling techniques that can utilize the uniqueness of individual language style, and demonstrated the benefit of doing so in enhancing the performance of automatized lie detection systems.

Dr. Roya Samanipour
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2020

No citation available at this time.

Dr. Sepehr Zarif Mansour
Doctor of Philosophy
Mechanical Engineering 2020

Motion control in micrometer scales is a challenging task due to the required stringent accuracies. Conventional sensors that can help to achieve such accuracies are often bulky and expensive. Dr. Zarif Mansour developed novel techniques to minimize the direct use of sensors in micro-positioning devices that use piezoelectric actuators. His research helps designers to design compact and economic positioning stages with micrometer accuracies.

Dr. Shelley Cook
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr. Cook used social capital theory and participatory, spatial methods to promote understanding of homeless people’s presence/mobility in the urban environment. Her findings have significant theoretical implications and in the development of strength-based approaches to homelessness service delivery that foster maximum therapeutic benefit.

Dr. Soroush Dehghani
Doctor of Philosophy
Electrical Engineering 2020

No citation available at this time.

Dr. Sudip Shrestha
Doctor of Philosophy
Earth and Environmental Sciences 2020

Dr. Shrestha investigated the geological evolution of the mid-crust in the Himalaya. His research focused primarily on characterizing the cryptic geological structure of the mountain belt using an innovative, new analytical approach to detect subtle changes in the pressure-temperature-time paths that rocks record at the microscopic scale.

Dr. Sydney Morgan
Doctor of Philosophy
Biology 2020

Dr. Morgan examined how sulfite and yeast additions during winemaking can alter the microbial communities and sensory profiles of wine, and identified a local population of yeasts that shows great winemaking potential. Her research helps winemakers make more informed decisions, enabling them to produce unique and high-quality wines.

Dr. Taylor Holland
Doctor of Philosophy
Biology 2020

Dr. Holland examined aspects of using symbiotic root fungi to enhance grapevine performance after transplant. He revealed that while symbiotic fungi are often beneficial to young grapevines, it depends on environmental and biotic factors. Overall, fungal inoculants are most advantageous in the presence of stressful environmental growing conditions.

Dr. Tianlong Liu
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2020

Dr. Liu studied the application of microbial fuel cell technology in winery wastewater treatment. He designed an MFC reactor to treat winery wastewater meanwhile generating electricity, and studied the effect of pH, seasonality, and other operational parameters. This research illuminates the potential of recovering energy from wastewater treatment.

Dr. Tim Abbott
Doctor of Philosophy
Civil Engineering 2020

No citation available at this time.

Dr. Tina Inez Marten
Doctor of Philosophy
Interdisciplinary Studies 2020

Dr. Marten examined the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program in the Okanagan Valley, BC, Canada, from 2000 to 2015. Her case study focuses on German skilled workers and their families, who came to Canada as temporary foreign workers and hoped to gain permanent residence via the BCPNP. Her research reveals the BCPNP lacks oversight and enforcement, and creates a vulnerable workforce.

Dr. Vasileios Kokkoris
Doctor of Philosophy
Biology 2020

Dr. Kokkoris examined the effectiveness of fungal biofertilizers in the field and greenhouse. He found that biofertilizers performance depends on plant and fungal identity, and on soil conditions. The study also showed that unregulated spread of fungal biofertilizers that contain aggressive isolates have the potential to negatively affect natural ecosystems.

Dr. Zhenlin Tian
Doctor of Philosophy
Chemistry 2020

Dr. Tian developed chemical probes to study vital proteins in neurons. He obtained these probes through rational design and chemical synthesis. He subsequently these novel probes in living cells, which proved the application potentials. This research offered new tools to facilitate the elucidation of neurobiology problems.