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Phil Wadler

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Phil Wadler

Phil Wadler
University of Edinburgh.
Born (1956-04-08) April 8, 1956 (age 58)
Institutions University of Edinburgh
Avaya Labs
Bell Labs
University of Glasgow
University of Sydney
University of Copenhagen
University of Oxford
Chalmers University of Technology
Carnegie-Mellon University
Stanford University
Alma mater Stanford University
Carnegie-Mellon University
Thesis Doctoral advisor Nico Habermann
Doctoral students Philip Trinder,[1]
Kei Davis,[2]
Ezra Cooper,[2]
Jeremy Yallop,[3]
DeLesley Hutchins[4]
Notable awards Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh
Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery

Philip Wadler (born 8 April 1956, USA) is a computer scientist known for his contributions to programming language design and type theory. In particular, he has contributed to the theory behind functional programming[5] and the use of monads in functional programming, the design of the purely functional language Haskell,[6] and the XQuery declarative query language. In 1984, he created the Orwell programming language. He is also author of the paper "Theorems for free!"[7] that gave rise to much research on functional language optimization (see also Parametricity).


Wadler received a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Stanford University in 1977, and a Master of Science degree in Computer Science from Carnegie-Mellon University in 1979.[8] He completed his Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science at Carnegie-Mellon University in 1984. His thesis was entitled "Listlessness is Better than Laziness" and was supervised by Nico Habermann.


Wadler's research interests[9][10] are in programming languages.[11][12]

Wadler was a Research Fellow at the Programming Research Group (part of the Oxford University Computing Laboratory) and St Cross College, Oxford during 1983–87.[8] He was progressively Lecturer, Reader, and Professor at the University of Glasgow from 1987–96. Wadler was a Member of Technical Staff at Bell Labs, Lucent Technologies (1996–99) and then at Avaya Labs (1999–2003). Since 2003, he has been Professor of Theoretical Computer Science in the School of Informatics at the University of Edinburgh.[13]

Academic service

Wadler was editor of the Journal of Functional Programming from 1990–2004. He received the Most Influential POPL Paper Award in 2003 for the 1993 POPL Symposium paper Imperative Functional Programming, jointly with Simon Peyton Jones.[8][14] In 2005, he became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. In 2007, he was inducted as a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery.

Wadler is currently working on a new functional language designed for writing web applications, called Links.[15]


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