Prof receives funding recognizing emerging research leadership


Hossein Kassiri, an associate professor in the Electrical Engineering & Computer Science Department at York University’s Lassonde School of Engineering, was recently honoured with a prestigious Early Researcher Award (ERA) from the government of Ontario. He is the only researcher at York University to receive the award this year.

Hossein Kaassiri
Hossein Kassiri

The ERA recognizes rising stars in the initial stages of their research journeys who are leading impactful work. It looks to fuel innovation across Ontario by providing recipients with funding to help build teams of researchers supporting the future of innovation.

“This award is one of the most prestigious recognitions an academic can receive early in their career – it’s a great feeling to be acknowledged,” says Kassiri. “Receiving an ERA indicates that I’m headed in the right direction with my research.”

Kassiri plans to use his ERA funding to recruit talented graduate students who will help support his interdisciplinary research project spanning across disciplines from electrical engineering to neuroscience. His research focuses on the design and development of miniature brain implants that can help monitor, diagnose, and treat neurological disorders such as epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease.

These small, powerful implants work wirelessly and do not require batteries. They can sense neuronal activities in different areas of the brain, process them using machine learning algorithms that are specifically tailored for each patient, and provide responsive feedback to the brain through electric or optical pulses.

“This award will provide the financial support necessary to hire more excellent researchers and advance the development of medical device technologies,” says Kassiri.