Global Impact


Science is borne out of curiosity


I am excited about the discoveries taking place at the University of Waterloo. We continue to be Canada's most innovative university in part because of the many brilliant ideas that members of our community turn into reality. The combination of curiosity and rigorous inquiry will lead to our next great invention, either directly or by furthering our knowledge of how the world works.

Donna Strickland
Donna Strickland Professor, Faculty of Science Nobel laureate in physics 2018

Prosperity and scarcity

Natural, economic and political disruption. People are being forced from their homes. Where will they work and how will they rebuild community?

There are more people on the move today than at any other time since the Second World War. Millions are being forced from their homes by natural, economic or political disruption. While millions search for their next home, others look for their next job, with nations searching for ways to create employment for all.

Prosperity and scarcity

Next–Generation Computing

There are millions of data points that make up our digital lives. How will they fit into a quantum future?

The explosion of data has transformed our lives and our economy. As innovators find new ways to use big data to improve our lives, others are in a race to protect sensitive data in a future where quantum devices, information and technologies bring both promise and risk.

Next-Generation Computing

Human–Machine Interaction

Technology is augmenting every aspect of humanity from health care to transportation and banking. Where is the fine balance between human and machine?

The line between human and machine is increasingly blurry. We are relying on machines to do everything from drive our cars to diagnose illness. Artificial intelligence decides who gets parole, while nano-sized robots deliver medicine inside our bodies. Who decides what the robots decide?

Human-Machine Interaction

Climate and Natural Wonders

Over the past 50 years, human activity has warmed our planet. We are already seeing the effects today in widely shifting patterns in climate. How can we sustain our future?

As temperatures rise and greenhouse gas emissions climb, many wonder if change will come fast enough. Some researchers are giving us a deeper understanding of our universe, while others are working to shift our consciousness or create cleaner energy in a race against time.

Climate and Natural Wonders

Healthy Aging

People in many parts of the world are having fewer children and living longer. How will we live when there are fewer family supports?

The world’s older population continues to grow at an unprecedented rate. This global transformation will affect every sector, with health care seeing the most profound shifts. There will be seven times as many elderly people by 2100. How will they live? Can they live well and who will care for them?

Healthy Aging