Former Mitacs professor wins Technical Achievement Oscar

Vancouver, BC – UBC Computer Science adjunct professor Robert Bridson was the recent recipient of a Technical Achievement Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for his work on several films including Gravity, The Avengers, The Hobbit, and Avatar.

Bridson was recognized for his pioneering work in developing mathematical software that makes digital animation look real on screen. His software simulates the underlying physics of the phenomena that animation artists are trying to reproduce by following the rules of nature.

Bridson has supervised numerous Mitacs internships, including projects with Microsoft Canada where his students investigated how to bridge their offline visual effects research into real-time algorithms for video games.


Alejandro Adem, CEO and Scientific Director, Mitacs

“Mitacs offers our warmest congratulations to Professor Bridson for his outstanding work in digital animation. It’s an honour for our interns to have had the opportunity to work with Professor Bridson.”

Todd Keeler, former Mitacs intern

“Professor Bridson provided excellent oversight and invaluable technical direction during my Mitacs internship with Microsoft Canada. It is exciting to see his work being honoured by such an esteemed organization as the Academy.”

Quick facts:

  • Mitacs is a national, private not-for-profit organization that develops the next generation of innovators with vital skills through unique research and training programs.
  • Mitacs’ Accelerate program connects graduate students with industry partners for research internships supervised by faculty. In 2013–2014, Mitacs supported 2,240 Accelerate internships.
  • Interns spend approximately half of the time on-site with the industry partner; the remainder is spent at the university advancing the research under the guidance of a faculty supervisor.
  • Open to all disciplines and all industry sectors, projects can span a wide range of areas, including manufacturing, business processes, IT, social sciences, design, and more.


For professor Bridson’s acceptance speech, visit YouTube.

For information about Mitacs and our programs, see