Arvind Gupta (computer scientist)

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Arvind Gupta
13th President of the University of British Columbia
In office
Preceded byStephen Toope
Succeeded byMartha Piper (interim)
Personal details
Bornc. 1961
Jalandhar, Punjab, India
Spouse(s)Michelle Pereira
Children3 daughters: Leandra Gupta
ProfessionAcademic, Mathematics, Computer Scientist
Arvind Gupta
Alma materMcMaster University, University of Toronto
Scientific career
ThesisConstructivity Issues in Tree Minors [1] (1990)
Doctoral advisorStephen Cook, Alasdair Urquhart

Arvind Gupta (b. circa 1961) is an Indo-Canadian computer scientist who was the 13th President of the University of British Columbia (UBC) and the former CEO of Mitacs Canada.

Early life and education[edit]

Gupta was born in Jalandhar in the Indian state of Punjab.[2] Both his parents were academics. His mother was one of the first women to teach mathematics at a college in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh.[3]

Gupta lived in India and spoke Punjabi for his first five years until his family moved to Detroit where his father, a chemistry professor, had started a fellowship at Wayne State University. He then learned to speak English. Within two years, they moved to Timmins, Ontario after his father earned a job as a pollution chemist with a mining company.

He obtained a bachelor's degree in mathematics at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario before earning a master's and a PhD at the University of Toronto, under the supervision of Stephen Cook and Alasdair Urquhart.[1] His family knew some of the victims killed in the 1985 bombing of Air India Flight 182.[3]


Gupta spent 18 years in the School of Computing Science at Simon Fraser University before being recruited by UBC in 2009 as a professor of computer science. In 2012, he joined the federal government's Science, Technology and Innovation Council.[4]

From 2000 until his appointment as President of UBC in 2014, Gupta served as CEO and scientific director of Mitacs Canada, a national non-profit that worked with government and industry to fund student researchers.

In his inauguration, Gupta committed to increasing UBC's focus on research.[5] Gupta resigned abruptly from his position as President of UBC on August 7, 2015, after 13 months of service. The reasons for his resignation were not revealed[6] and caused some public controversies.

In October 2015, the University of Toronto announced Gupta's joining them as a distinguished visiting professor for one academic year.[7]


  1. ^ a b Arvind Gupta - The Mathematics Genealogy Project
  2. ^ Sherlock, Tracey (Sep 13, 2014). "University of B.C. boss hates missed opportunities". Vancouver Sun. Archived from the original on August 26, 2016. Retrieved January 27, 2019.
  3. ^ a b Smith, Charlie (March 26, 2014). "Incoming UBC president reinforces university's global brand". Georgia Straight. Retrieved September 13, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ Ian Bailey; James Bradshaw (March 12, 2014). "Arvind Gupta, innovation expert, named next president of UBC". Globe and Mail. Retrieved September 13, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ Dhillon, Sunny (Sep 12, 2014). "UBC's Gupta kicks off term as president by adding $100-million to research funding". Globe and Mail.
  6. ^ 7, Media Release | August. "UBC announces leadership transition". UBC News. Retrieved 2015-08-07. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link) CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  7. ^ "Arvind Gupta, former UBC president, joins University of Toronto". CBC News. Canadian Press. Oct 1, 2015.

Academic offices
Preceded by
Stephen Toope
President of the University of British Columbia
Succeeded by
Martha Piper (interim)