About Centre for Wireless Communications

Missions and Objectives

As an academic research and educational unit attached to the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, the Centre for Wireless Communications (CWC) was established in 1996 with a donation of one million dollars from Ericsson Communications Canada over a period of five years as seed money. The mission of the Centre is to develop a world-class telecommunications research facility that will serve as a place for training highly qualified personnel in telecommunications and as a facilitator for enhancing the research activities of its faculty researchers. The objectives are to pursue first rate research, to train highly qualified personnel, and to transfer technology with industry and government labs.

The Centre’s program is built on the strength of ongoing research by its faculty researchers and their graduate students. The presence of the CWC will provide an umbrella environment of enhancing telecommunications-related research at the University of Waterloo.


The research program of CWC is being driven by a vision of emerging telecommunications technology in wireless and wireline communication networks and systems. The interworking of wireless and wireline networks and systems offers an extended mobile environment that separately would encounter stringent constraints. The support of multimedia services by the extended communications environment presents many challenging problems of a theoretical and practical nature.

Thrust Areas

The research program of CWC is structured along four thrust areas:

  1. Communications Networks
  2. Digital Communications
  3. Radio Frequency (RF) Technology
  4. Signal Processing.

The research is being carried out using a combination of analytical methods, and software and hardware approaches.

During the initial five years, the money from the Ericsson donation was used to hire two faculty members with the title Ericsson Fellow, and to provide scholarships and fellowships for graduate students on the one hand, and to incorporate industrial relevance into the students’ research programs on the other. The Ericsson Fellows subsequently became permanent faculty members in the parent Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Over the years, the four thrust areas have thrived and acquired independent research funding. As the Director, J.W. Mark’s own research interests are in BroadBand Communications Research (BBCR), the CWC’s activities are now tailored to those being conducted in the BBCR Lab, and serves as an umbrella to the original four thrust areas. The research activities and personnel profiles tailored around research activities are available in the BroadBand Communications Research (BBCR) website.