van der Schaar Lab

Fergus Imrie joins van der Schaar Lab as postdoc

The van der Schaar Lab is delighted to welcome its newest member, Fergus Imrie, who officially joined on April 1 as a postdoctoral researcher. Fergus’ experience and dedication to translational research make him the ideal person to guide the lab’s formational work on topics at the cutting edge of machine learning, with the overarching aim of transforming healthcare.

Prior to joining the lab, Fergus completed his DPhil (PhD) at the University of Oxford in the Department of Statistics, developing deep learning approaches for drug discovery. Fergus values work with a strong translational impact: his research is currently being used by a number of pharmaceutical companies on active drug discovery projects to develop new therapeutics.

A core principle for me is that methodological advances/improvements should go hand-in-hand with scientific discovery, improved understanding, and the ability to do things we couldn’t do before.

– Fergus Imrie
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As a postdoc working alongside the lab’s broader research team, Fergus will help shape research into a wide range of projects and areas, but he is particularly interested in self-supervised learning and methods for understanding clinical decision making. He is keen to work on problems in healthcare outside of drug discovery, while also solving fundamental challenges in machine learning.

As one of the dominant forces driving progress in a burgeoning area, the van der Schaar Lab continues to grow its research team. Six PhD students joined the lab in October 2020, and the 2021 intake of researchers will be announced in the coming months.

A full list of our current research team members can be found here.

Nick Maxfield

Nick oversees the van der Schaar Lab’s communications, including media relations, content creation, and maintenance of the lab’s online presence.

Nick studied Japanese (BA Hons.) at the University of Oxford, graduating in 2012. Nick previously worked in HQ communications roles at Toyota (2013-2016) and Nissan (2016-2020).

Given his humanities/languages background and experience in communications, Nick is well-positioned to highlight and explain the real-world impact of research that can often be quite esoteric. Thankfully, he is comfortable asking almost endless questions in order to understand a topic.

Mihaela van der Schaar

Mihaela van der Schaar is the John Humphrey Plummer Professor of Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence and Medicine at the University of Cambridge, a Fellow at The Alan Turing Institute in London, and a Chancellor’s Professor at UCLA.

Mihaela has received numerous awards, including the Oon Prize on Preventative Medicine from the University of Cambridge (2018), a National Science Foundation CAREER Award (2004), 3 IBM Faculty Awards, the IBM Exploratory Stream Analytics Innovation Award, the Philips Make a Difference Award and several best paper awards, including the IEEE Darlington Award.

In 2019, she was identified by National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts as the most-cited female AI researcher in the UK. She was also elected as a 2019 “Star in Computer Networking and Communications” by N²Women. Her research expertise span signal and image processing, communication networks, network science, multimedia, game theory, distributed systems, machine learning and AI.

Mihaela’s research focus is on machine learning, AI and operations research for healthcare and medicine.