Stacey Jeffery wins ERC Starting Grant for quantum algorithms on quantum computers with limited memories

Stacey Jeffery, senior researcher at CWI’s Algorithms and Complexity Group and QuSoft in Amsterdam, is awarded an ERC Starting Grant of 1.5 million euro for research on Algorithms, Security and Complexity for Quantum Computers (ASC-Q). The grant helps ambitious younger researchers launch their own projects, form their teams and pursue their best ideas.

As progress is made in implementing quantum computers, the question is looming ever larger: What will we use quantum computers for? This proposal is concerned with the theoretical computer science aspects of this question. And for the coming years, Jeffery will consider how to design new quantum algorithms, that can be run in a secure way, on quantum computers with limited memories.

Jeffery explains: “While there are already some impressive proof-of-concept quantum algorithms that demonstrate the game changing power of quantum computers, most of them assume an arbitrarily large memory, and we don’t have many algorithms for concrete real world problems that people want to solve in practice. We will work towards techniques for designing quantum algorithms that can be used by experts in a number of practical domains, who don’t necessarily have expertise in quantum algorithmic theory, to design their own quantum algorithms. We will focus on techniques that only use a small amount of quantum memory.”

On receiving the ERC grant, Jeffery said: “I’m really grateful to my colleagues at CWI and QuSoft for their support and advice in preparing this application, and preparing for the interview. Now I can’t wait to get started on the research!”

The project, which has a duration of 5 years, is expected to start at the end of 2022. It will fund the work of Jeffery, of two post-doctoral researchers and of two PhD students. More information on the grants awarded by the European Research Council (ERC) can be found at

More about Stacey Jeffery
In 2014, Stacey Jeffery received her doctorate in Computer Science from the University of Waterloo, under the supervision of Prof. Michele Mosca, and informal co-supervision of Prof. Frédéric Magniez. She was an IQIM Postdoctoral Scholar at Caltech until December 2016. Since January 2017, she has been a Senior Researcher at QuSoft & CWI, where she holds an NWO WISE Fellowship, and a Veni Grant.

Jeffery’s research interests are in quantum cryptography and quantum algorithms. She is interested in secure delegation of quantum computation, frameworks for facilitating the design of quantum algorithms, and models of quantum computation.

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