Shurui Zhou

[pronunciation: Shoo-ray Joe]


Assistant Professor
University of Toronto
Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering
Department of Computer Science (Cross-Appointment)
Department of Mechanical & Industrial Engineering (Cross-Appointment)
Schwartz Reisman Institute (Affiliated)
Data Sciences Institute (Member)
shurui (dot) zhou (at) utoronto (dot) ca
Office: PT484D
Phone: 416-978-4628

Bio W3Schools

I direct the FORCOLAB at the University of Toronto. We are focusing on helping distributed and interdisciplinary software teams to collaborate more efficiently and build high-quality software systems, especially in the context of modern open-source collaboration forms, fork-based development, and interdisciplinary teams when building AI-enabled systems or scientific software. We also apply software engineering best practices to facilitate better collaborative Computer-Aided Design (CAD). Please find our publications here.

I received my Ph.D.'s degree in May. 2020 from the Institute for Software Research, now called Software and Societal Systems Department (S3D), School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University. I am very fortunate to work with my advisor Professor Christian Kästner, and my ‘informal’ advisor and collaborator Professor Bogdan Vasilescu. I received my Master's degree from Peking University, and my Bachelor's degree from Xi'an Jiaotong University.

Prospective Students

I am actively looking for talented, motivated colleagues at different levels to join us. See here for detail.

Ph.D. Thesis

Title: Improving Collaboration Efficiency in Fork-based Development [slides]
Committee Members: Christian Kästner, James D. Herbsleb, Laura A. Dabbish, Andrzej Wąsowski.



Jun 6, 2024
Invited Talk at WiCI Seminars at Iowa State University about "Exploring the Practices and Challenges of Collaboration in Developing Scientific Open-Source Software".

Apr 26, 2022
Invited Talk at It Will Never Work in Theory about "Understanding the sustainability challenges for building open-source scientific software".

Sep 25, 2022
Invited Talk at NumFOCUS Project Summit about "Towards sustainable OSS communities".

April. 5, 2022
Invited Talk at SMILE (Statistics and MachIne LEarning Journal Club, Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics, University of Toronto) -- Improving Collaboration Efficiency for Building AI-based Software.

Oct 20. 2021
Invited Talk at Perceive'21 -- Improving Collaboration Efficiency for Building AI-based Software. [Recording]

Nov 14. 2020
Invited Talk at CSER'20 -- Improving Collaboration Efficiency for Distributed and Interdisciplinary Software Teams.

Sep. 11 2020
Talked about Forking in Open Source at Sustain Open Source Podcast

May. 5 2019
Dagstuhl Seminar 19191 -- Software Evolution in Time and Space: Unifying Version and Variability Management. [Seminar abstract] [lighting talk - Version Control For AI]


I received the Gordon Slemon Teaching of Design Award in 2022 at UofT ECE for revamping of ECE444.

ECE444 - Software Engineering 2023 Fall 2022 Fall 2021 Fall 2020 Fall
ECE358 - Foundations of Computing 2022 Fall
ECE345 - Algorithms and Data Structures 2023 Fall 2021 Fall
ECE1785/ CSC2130 - Empirical Software Engineering 2024 Winter 2023 Winter 2022 Winter 2021 Winter


  • [Co-Chair] ICSE 2025-Student Volunteers, ASE 2024-Poster, CSER 2021 Fall Meeting
  • [PC] ICSME2024, ICSE2024, FSE2023, ASE2022, FSE2022, ICSE2022-Poster, ACMwomENcourage2021-Posters, FSE2021-Student Research Competition, VariVolution 2020 Workshop
  • [Journal Reviewer] TOSEM Board of Distinguished Reviewers (2021-2024), TSE (2020, 2019), EMSE (2021), CSCW 2021, Journal of Systems & Software (2021), Journal of Software (2021), IST 2020
  • [Steering Committee] Research Software Alliance (ReSA)
  • [Grant External Reviewer] NSERC Discovery (2023, 2021)
  • [Organizer] FOSD 2018 Meeting
  • [Sub-Reviewer] ASE 2020, ICSE 2020, FSE 2019, ASE 2019, ICSE 2018, ASE 2017, FSE 2017, SPLC 2017, ICSE 2017, VAMOS 2017, SPLC 2016, ASE 2015 and TSE 2015
  • Prior Projects

    Identifying Redundant PRs on GitHub

    We monitor the coming pull request of each GitHub project and detect potentially redundant pull request pairs to save maintainer and contributors' effort. This is intended to be a GitHub bot still under implementation for our [SANER'19] paper with [Preliminary Evaluation on Usefulness].

    This project is designed as a complementary of the GitHub network view. We sift all active forks and summarize changes with statistics and representative keywords. It is a light-weight programming language independent web service for our [ICSE'18] INFOX paper and the [ICSE'18 poster] paper.
  • Prof. Shurui Zhou
  • Xinyan He (UofT-CSC494/495)
  • John Melric Espedido, Ron Hu, Andrew Kim, Ron Thomas (UofT-ECE496 Capstone 2022-2023)
  • Laith Hanania, John Perry, Cansin Varol (UofT-ECE496 Capstone 2021-2022)
  • Luyao Ren (PKU)
  • Prof. Christian Kästner (CMU)
  • Prof. Andrzej Wąsowski (ITU)