Skip to main content Skip to local navigation

Three York scholars named Banting Postdoctoral Fellows for 2023–24

Three York scholars named Banting Postdoctoral Fellows for 2023–24

Saba Asaad, Stephen Melly and Lynn Yu Ling Ng have been named among this year’s recipients of the prestigious Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship awarded by the government of Canada. The program aims to attract and retain top-tier postdoctoral talent, develop their leadership potential and position them for success as research leaders of tomorrow.

Valued at $70,000 per year for two years, the fellowship allows ambitious scholars to conduct their research and devote substantial time to work without the financial pressures that might typically arise. The successful applicants were reviewed against three equally weighted selection criteria: 1) Applicant’s research excellence and leadership in the research domain; 2) Quality of applicant's proposed research program; and 3) Institutional commitment and demonstrated synergy between applicant and institutional strategic priorities.

Saba Asaad, EECS, Lassonde (NSERC)

Asaad’s research project, titled “Over-the-Air Federated Learning via Benchmark Wireless Network,” develops algorithmic and analytic frameworks to address essential issues arising in the implementation of federated learning (FL) in practical wireless networks. Asaad’s project proposes an alternative method, over-the-air FL, which leverages the superposition property of multiple access channels to realize the predefined aggregation policy directly over-the-air.

“Federated learning was first designed for ideal communication networks. However, in realistic edge-learning scenarios the edge-devices, connected to the parameter server via wireless links, face several challenges due to uncertain wireless conditions and limited resources,” explains Asaad.

The approach that is taken by the project can be leveraged in the development of a large variety of services that deal with the concept of distributed learning.

Dr Saba Asaad

A picture of Dr. Saba Asaad

Stephen Melly, Mechanical Engineering, Lassonde (NSERC)

Melly’s proposed research, titled “Development of the computational constitutive model for super-soft 4D bioprinted materials,” aims to formulate computational models that capture the complex mechanical characteristics of super-soft materials. This research has the potential to enhance our understanding of super-soft materials in 4D bioprinting using virtual experiments, facilitating advancements in the field and the development of reliable and customized artificial tissues that match the specific needs of individual patients.

“Successful design and fabrication of engineered tissues necessitate a comprehensive grasp of the mechanical characteristics of super-soft materials. This guarantees the efficacy of biomedical applications, as differences in mechanical properties between the engineered tissues and the surrounding biological tissues may result in complications like rejection,” shares Melly.

The cutting-edge project fills the growing demand for accurate computational models that describe the complex mechanical behaviors of super-soft tissues.

Dr Stephen Melly

A picture of Dr. Stephen Melly

Lynn Yu Ling Ng, Department of Politics, LA&PS (SSHRC)

Ng’s project, titled “Care for All is Care that Pulls Us Through,” employs an advanced critical intersectional approach to analyze care work and the presence of distinct forms of structural inequality (e.g. age, race, gender, class, nationality), which influence migrant care workers (MCWs) and their capacity to care for elderly persons. The project’s guiding questions are: 1) How do MCWs make sense of caring for the elderly and for themselves, and how do they strive to protect these visions of care?; and 2) How can these imaginaries of care be accounted for and integrated into care and labour migration policy?

“Eldercare is rarely framed from the perspective of MCWs beyond the common identity debates of race, gender, and class. Neither has much attention been given to their rich migratory experiences and expert knowledge of care work,” reveals Ng.

The anticipated outputs can be a valuable source of information for policy development in the field of eldercare.

Dr Lynn Yu Ling Ng

A picture of Dr. Lynn Yu Ling Ng

For more information about the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship please visit the Banting Fellowship website.