Mark Driscoll

Mark Driscoll

Mechanical Engineering
McGill University

Chair title

NSERC/McGill Design Engineering Chair for Interdisciplinary Innovation of Medical Technologies

Chair program

Chairs in Design Engineering Program


Associate Chairholder since 2018


Design engineering plays a critical role in helping translate ideas into practice to address the Grand Challenges for Engineering facing humanity. Design engineering addresses end users’ needs for a new invention or technology, making its value proposition stronger by increasing commercial viability and marketplace success. The Chair’s main objective is to improve education in the interdisciplinary innovation of medical technologies. This will be achieved by bridging the gap not only between academia and industry, but also between departments and faculties internally at McGill University. The main activity will involve merging the Capstone course within the Faculty of Engineering with valuable participation from the Faculties of Medicine and Education. In addition, four new courses in medical technology will be designed and introduced. Complementary activities will include design workshops and field work. The combination of the above objective and activities will enable creativity, design and innovation to be fostered, leveraged and effectively conveyed to students.

The NSERC/McGill Design Engineering Chair for Interdisciplinary Innovation of Medical Technologies has several industry partners who will serve to guide its activities and ensure that training activities adhere to current commercial regulations and procedures. More specifically, such partners will engage in curriculum development and concrete practicum for students. The Chair’s research program will be a place for knowledge exchange, know-how and the sharing of specialized prototyping and testing infrastructure. Furthermore, the partners offer students real design problems, which are approached and solved through prototype production/testing via student Capstone projects administered by the Chairholders. The overall aim of this program is to increase the number and quality of design engineers by establishing an innovative and interdisciplinary environment that will equip graduates with the hard and soft skills required to transition into the workforce.

Dr. Driscoll’s main research surrounds the understanding of the spine through three complementing avenues spanning from expertise in biomechanics and simulation.  Dr. Driscoll and his team initially look into better understanding spinal stability. Then, they research novel concepts to explain, diagnose and treat back pain or unstable spines. Most notably, they develop novel physics-driven VR (virtual reality)/AR (augmented reality) surgical training modules. Dr. Driscoll’s extensive experience in the field of orthopedics from a biomechanical perspective along with the fact that several of his own patented medical devices have been brought to market, will allow Dr. Driscoll to continue driving research and equipping students with the skills needed to succeed in this field. The Chair’s research program and initiatives have direct benefits to Canadians and their economy in that they contribute towards improving knowledge of a widespread economical problem related to back pain and its treatment. The Chair’s program will also provide the rapid-growing biomedical industry with highly qualified personnel, and will leverage translational research for the creation of new commercial medical technologies.


  • CAE Healthcare Inc.
  • Opsens inc.
  • GSE Biomedical
  • Klox Technologies Inc.
  • Soundbite Medical Solutions
  • Agile MV
  • Pega Medical Inc.

Contact information

Mechanical Engineering
McGill University



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