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Chris Heunen

Chris Heunen

Reader (Associate Professor) at School of Informatics, University of Edinburgh

Research Interests:
  • Quantum Programming Languages

  • Distributed Quantum Computing

  • Category Theory

Chris Heunen has a background in foundations of quantum informatics and programming semantics. He has published over 80 research articles in top venues across computer science (LICS, POPL, ICALP), physics (PRL, PNAS), and mathematics (Advances in Mathematics, Journal of Functional Analysis). He developed the first general and optimal algorithm to distribute quantum circuits over interconnected quantum systems, now used in industry standard quantum compilers. His book Categories for Quantum Theory with Jamie Vicary is used in at least 6 university courses. His work was awarded the 2012 Birkhoff–von Neumann prize, and has been funded by NWO and EPSRC Fellowships. He has attracted over £2.5m in funding as Principal Investigator, and is a co-Investigator in the Quantum Computing & Simulation hub. He is a founding editor and sits on the steering board of the journal Quantum, serves as area editor for quantum computing for the ACM Transactions in Computational Logic, and is part of the IFIP Working Group on Foundations of Quantum Computation. Part of the senior leadership team of the School of Informatics in Edinburgh, he is also Director of the Cisco Centre for Excellence in Quantum & AI.

Featured Publications:

Chris Heunen, Andre Kornell, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 119.9 (2022): e2117024119. Axioms for the category of Hilbert spaces

Current PhD students:

Nesta van der Schaaf, Matt Di Meglio, Kengo Hirata

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