Kumar Murty

Professor Vijaya Kumar Murty, PhD, FRSC, FNAS, is a former member of the Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table.

Affiliations

Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table

While he is not listed on the About Us page, Murty is a former co-chair of the Modelling Consensus Table of the Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table.1) He co-authored an October 2021 science brief titled “COVID-19 Vaccine Confidence in Ontario and Strategies to Support Capability, Opportunity, and Motivation Among at Risk Populations”.2)

University of Toronto

Murty is a Professor of Mathematics, and has twice been Chair of the Department of Mathematics at the University of Toronto.3)

Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences

Murty became the Director of the Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences in 2019.4) The Fields Institute is advocating for the creation of “smart villages”, research for which Murty has received funding from U of T.5)

Funding

Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Murty received a $666,667.00 grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) for the purpose of creating “the COVID-19 Mathematical Modelling Rapid Response Task Force, a network of experts who will work to predict outbreak trajectories for the disease, measure public health interventions and provide real-time advice to policy-makers.”6) 7)

Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada

Murty received $3,000,000.00 from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) through their Emerging Infectious Diseases Modelling Initiative (EIDMI), to “bridge the gap between mathematical research and real public health issues. The team will seek to produce models that are effective, practical and reliable for applications to public health issues for COVID-19 as well as boost Canada’s future pandemic preparedness.”8)

University of Toronto

Murty received a portion of $1.23 million in funding from the University of Toronto's Connaught Fund through their Global Challenge Award. The project is called “Scalable architecture for smart villages.” The team is comprised of U of T political science and law researchers, as well as collaborators from Process Research Ortech Inc., the University of California, Berkeley, Stanford University, the government of India, and the Aeronautical Development Agency, Bangalore.9)

Ventures

Murty has launched two companies. The first, Prata Technologies, is not currently active.10)

The second, PerfectCloud, is a cloud-based digital identity company headquartered in Toronto, Ontario with offices in New York, United States and New Delhi, India. Dr. Murty is a co-founder and CTO since 2007.11)

In a critical commentary on Murty's perceived conflicts of interest, Canuck Law opines that, “First, by promoting the doomsday computer modelling as fact, he can convince the Ontario Government (and elsewhere) to impose more restrictions. That means more people are stuck at home, and more people will be looking at computer services. Second, by pushing the “Smart Villages” initiative, Murty is able to grow the market. In order to connect people the way he wants, they will need digital hookups, like the kinds of services that Perfect Cloud offers.”12)

The company's website is no longer online, but is available via the Wayback Machine.

1)
Hillmer, M. P., Feng, P., McLaughlin, J. R., Murty, V. K., Sander, B., Greenberg, A., & Brown, A. D. (2021). Ontario’s COVID-19 Modelling Consensus Table: mobilizing scientific expertise to support pandemic response. Canadian Journal of Public Health. https://doi.org/10.17269/s41997-021-00559-8
2)
Barrett, K. A., Feldman, J., Trent, J., Weerasinghe, A., Lebovic, G., Yan, S., Desveaux, L., Presseau, J., Khenti, A., Perkhun, A., Bodmer, N. S., Born, K. B., Jüni, P., & Murty, V. K. (2021). COVID-19 Vaccine Confidence in Ontario and Strategies to Support Capability, Opportunity, and Motivation Among at Risk Populations. https://doi.org/10.47326/ocsat.2021.02.47.1.0
3)
About. (2017, February 5). V. Kumar Murty. https://archive.ph/mUPvV
4)
Berzunza, E. (2019, May 9). Professor Kumar Murty is selected as the next Director of the Fields Institute. Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences. https://archive.ph/Y4PDZ
5) , 12)
Ronnie. (2021, April 25). Vijaya Kumar Murty, PerfectCloudIO, Smart Villages & Covid Restrictions. Canuck Law. https://archive.ph/NK8N7
6)
Murty, K. (2021). Declaration of Interest External Author Form. Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table. https://covid19-sciencetable.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/Declaration-of-Interest_Authors_V.-Kumar-Murty_20211008.pdf
7)
Kalvapalle, R. (2020, April 1). Nine U of T researchers — including Math’s Vijaya Kumar Murty — receive federal grants for COVID-19 projects. Faculty of Arts & Science. https://archive.ph/6Ti09
8)
Government of Canada. (2021, April 9). Funding Decisions - Emerging Infectious Diseases Modelling Initiative. NSERC. https://archive.ph/ECJnT
9)
Robinson, J. (2017, November 13). Connaught Global Challenge Award: Five U of T teams share $1.23 million in funding. University of Toronto News. https://archive.ph/IC79W
10)
Federal Corporation Information - 687160-7 - Online Filing Centre - Corporations Canada - Corporations - Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada. Government of Canada. Retrieved January 23, 2022, from https://archive.ph/PpfXw
11)
Identity and Access Management Solutions with Encryption | Cloud Data Security | PerfectCloud. (2021, April 24). PerfectCloud; Wayback Machine. https://web.archive.org/web/20210424233458/https://perfectcloud.io/about-us/
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