Mathematical Methods for Engineering Computer-Based Systems

The Waterloo Formal Methods Research Group, WatForm, was established in the Spring of 2001 at the University of Waterloo. WatForm draws its members from both the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science and the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department.

The focus of WatForm is the development of mathematical methods for engineering computer-based systems. All group members use rigorous and formal mathematics for the analysis or creation of systems. The group's research covers improvements to theories, development of algorithms, construction and evaluation of tools, and applications of techniques on real-world problems.

The WatForm members apply their results to the design and verification of real-world systems ranging from microprocessors to autonomous vehicles.

The group has developed a strong sense of synergy from the common mathematics, tools, and techniques that underly the different application domains. An important aspect to our group is the cross-fertilization of ideas that occur as we compare characteristics and solutions from our different fields.

Meet our people

Joanne Atlee

Joanne M Atlee


I am interested in all aspects of software modelling, documentation, and analysis. I am particularly interested in what I call practical formalisms -- specification and design notations that are practitioner-friendly and yet have a precise semantics that is suitable for automated analysis.