Christopher P. Monterola, Ph.D.

Professional / Research Career
  • Adjunct Senior Research Fellow, Complexity Institute, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. (October 2015-present)
  • Senior Scientist and Capability Group Manager of the Complex Systems (CxSyCapability Group, Computing Science Department, Institute of High Performance Computing, A*STAR, Singapore (August 2013-present)
  • Principal Investigator/Scientific Director, Complex Systems Programme, A*STAR Urban Systems Initiative (2012-present)
  • Associate Professor 7, National Institute of Physics, UP Diliman (2005-2012)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Max Planck Institute for the Physics of Complex Systems, Dresden (2003-2005)


Chris is a Senior Scientist at the Institute of High Performance Computing in A*STAR Singapore. He is currently the Capability Group Manager (CGM) of the Complex Systems (CxSyCapability Group at the IHPC. Chris is also the Principal Investigator and Scientific Director of the Complexity Science Programme (CSP) of the IHPC under the CxSy. The CSP is one of the programs under a bigger umbrella that is the A*STAR Urban Systems Initiative. Prior to his stint in Singapore, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the Max Planck Institute for the Physics of  Complex Systems. He obtained a Ph.D. in Physics in 2002 from the National Institute of Physics, University of the Philippines Diliman (UPD) where he was an Associate Professor 7. He was also the Coordinator of the Instrumentation Physics Laboratory (IPL), a leading physics research group in the Philippines.

Aside from teaching in UPD, he  also mentored and advised physics students (14 MS, 9 PhDs) on their research theses/dissertations. To date, he has advised/co-advised more than 30 students who have already successfully obtained various academic degrees. In 2008 and 2011 respectively, Chris received the Achievement award from the National Research Council of the Philippines(NRCP) and the Outstanding Young Scientist Award (OYS) from the DOST National Academy of Science and Technology because of his significant contributions to science and technology in the country. Also in 2011, he was an awardee of the NAST's Talent Search for Young Scientist Award.  

In 2009, the SEA-EU-NET  organized a mapping study of excellent researchers from the ASEAN member countries with the objective of raising "awareness for the existence of high-quality research" and presenting "a pool of excellent researchers in Southeast Asia." It featured Chris as one of the very few excellent researchers in the region.

His research expertise involve: Modeling Complex Systems, Computational Physics, Complex Networks, Neural Networks, Biological Physics, and Forecasting. Chris' group's research in UP focuses on the following fields: Landslide and Granular Dynamics, Social networks, Physics Education, Biological Networks, Public Opinion Research, Neural Networks, and Econophysics. The image below qualitatively shows the frequency distribution of the top 100 words used across all the abstracts of his publications in ISI-indexed journals. The word cloud was generated using Wordle.

Press Coverage
  • Smart city transport systemsA*STAR Press Coverage, 25 January 2017. [link]
  • Machine-learning to inspire Singapore metro buildout, United Press International, Inc., 25 January 2017. [link]
  • Machine-learning program predicts public transport use in Singapore,, 25 January 2017. [link]
  • Smart Data, Smart City, A*STAR Press Coverage, July 2016. [link]
  • A mathematical analysis of urban traffic models clarifies dispute over which approach is best, Science Daily, June 2016. [link]
  • How to reach disaster zone faster, A*STAR Television, July 2015. [link]
  • The right route to disaster relief, A*STAR Research,17 December 2014. [link]
  • A*STAR researchers develop predictive model for mass-transit train overloading, Green Car Congress,  24 November 2014. [link]
  • An agent-based model that analyzes commuters’ travel data will improve the Singapore rail experience, Asia Research News. [link
  • Helping trains take the strain, Science Daily Featured Research, 21 November 2014. [link]
  • Computer model that can replicate the growth of cities has valuable implications for urban planning and sustainability, July 16, 2014. [link]
  • Network Science To Aid Disaster Relief Operations, Alan Aw, Asian Scientist, April 29, 2014. [link]
  • Mapping a tool to guide rescuers in disaster zones, David Ee, The Straits Times, April 30, 2014. [link]
  • Researchers propose network-based evaluation tool to assess relief operations feasibility, Science Daily Featured Research, April 16, 2014. [link]
  • Urban planning: City dynamics yield to computer modeling, Science Daily Featured Research, 11 September 2013. [link]
  • New computer model of city dynamics could pave way to planning sustainable urban areas,, 11 September 2013. [link]

  • 2016 Country Prize Winner (Singapore), United Nation Global Pulse's The Big IDEAS Competition for Sustainable Cities and Urban Communities, June 2016. EF Legara, C Monterola, JF Valenzuela. [presentation]
  • 2016  SMRT Most Innovative Solution Award, IHPC (from CxSy MA Ramli, V Jayaraman, G Lee, C Monterola), SMRT Vendors' Day, 30 March 2016. 
  • 2014 ICCS Best Workshop Paper. N Othman, EF Legara, V Selvam, C Monterola, "Simulating Congestion Dynamics of Train Rapid Transit using Smart Card Data," International Conference on Computational Science, Cairns, Australia, 9-12 June 2014.
  • 2013 IEEE SCALE Challenge. First Prize Winner. H Kasim, T Hung, EF Legara, C Monterola, G Lee, X Li, BS Lee, S Lu, L Wang, and V Jayaraman, "Scalable Complex System Modeling for Sustainable City," Sixth IEEE International Scalable Computing Challenge (SCALE 2013), Delft, Netherlands, 14-16 May 2013. 
  • National Academy of Science and Technology (NAST) Outstanding Young Scientists (2011)
  • NAST Talent Search for Young Scientist awardee (2011)
  • Conferred the scientist rank 1 by the University of the Philippines System (2009-present)
  • University of the Philippines Centennial Professorial Chair (2008-2012)
  • National Research Council of the Philippines (NCRP) lifetime achievement award for Physics (2008)
  • Most Outstanding PhD student / Dean`s Medallion / Batch Valedictorian (2002)
  • Edgardo Gomez Award for Excellence in Dissertation Research (2002)
  • Gawad Chanselor : Most Outstanding Graduate Student (Science & Technology Cluster) (2002)
  • Gawad Chanselor: Best Published Research (2002)
  • Most Outstanding Masteral Graduate student –Dean`s Medallion, Batch Valedictorian (1999)

Most Recent Publications
  • EF Legara and C Monterola, "Inferring Passenger Types from Commuter Eigentravel Matrices,"
    Transportmetrica B: Transport Dynamics, published online on 28 Feb 2017.
  • B Yang and C Monterola, "Efficient intersection control for minimally guided vehicles: A self-organised and decentralised approach," 
    Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies 72, pp. 283-305, 2016.
  • J Pang and C Monterola, "Dendritic growth model of multilevel marketing," 
    Communications in Nonlinear Science and Numerical Simulation 43, pp. 100–110, 2017.
  • N Hu, EF Legara, GG Hung, KK Lee, and C Monterola, "Impacts of land use and amenities on public transport use, urban planning and design," 
    Land Use Policy 57, pp. 356–367, 2016.
  • B Yang, X Xinhua, ZF Pang, C Monterola, "Cluster Statistics and Quasisoliton Dynamics in Microscopic Optimal Velocity Models," 
    Physical Review E 93: 042212, 2016.
  • HY Xu, G  Li, EF Legara, SH  Kuo, D Zhao and C Monterola, "Generalized cross entropy method for estimating joint distribution from incomplete information," Physica A 453,   Pages 162–172,  July 2016.
  • B Yang, L Chea, A Verma and C Monterola, "Self-organized traffic flow at the lightless intersection: algorithms, policies and simulations of the environmental Impact," Clean Technologies and Environmental Policy 18, 2016.
  • B Yang and C Monterola, "Classification and unification of the microscopic deterministic traffic models," 
    Physical Review E 92, 042802, 02 October 2015.
  • C Abundo, C Monterola, EF Legara, Criticality of forcing directions on the fragmentation and resilience of grid networks," 
    Scientific Reports, 2015.
  • JF Valenzuela, C Monterola, EF Legara, X Fu, and SM Goh, On Centripetal Flows of Entities in Scale--Free Networks with Nodes of Finite Capability, 
    Complexity 2015.
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