Luca Cardelli

Luca Andrea Cardelli FRS is an Italian computer scientist who is an Assistant Director at Microsoft Research in Cambridge, UK.[1][5] Cardelli is well known for his research in type theory and operational semantics.[6][7] Among other contributions, he helped design Modula-3, implemented the first compiler for the (non-pure) functional programming language ML, and defined the concept of typeful programming. He helped develop the Polyphonic C# experimental programming language.[2][8][9][10][11][12]

Luca Cardelli
Luca Andrea Cardelli

ResidenceCambridge, UK
Alma materUniversity of Pisa[1]
University of Edinburgh
Known forTheory of Objects[2] with Martín Abadi
AwardsFellow of the Royal Society (2005)
Dahl-Nygaard Prize (2007)
Fellow of the ACM
Scientific career
FieldsType theory
Operational semantics
InstitutionsBell Labs
Microsoft Research
Digital Equipment Corporation
University of Edinburgh
University of Oxford[3]
ThesisAn algebraic approach to hardware description and verification (1982)
Doctoral advisorGordon Plotkin[4]


He was born in Montecatini Terme, Italy. He attended the University of Pisa[1] before receiving his PhD[13] from the University of Edinburgh in 1982. Before joining Microsoft Research in 1997, he worked for Bell Labs and Digital Equipment Corporation,[1] and contributed to Unix software including vismon.[14]


In 2004 he was inducted as a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society. In 2007, Cardelli was awarded the Senior AITO Ole-Johan Dahl and Kristen Nygaard prize.[15]


  1. "CARDELLI, Luca". Who's Who 2013, A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc, 2013; online edn, Oxford University Press.(subscription required)
  2. Cardelli, Luca; Abadi, Martín (1996). A theory of objects. Berlin: Springer. ISBN 978-0-387-94775-4.
  4. Luca Cardelli at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
  5. Dalchau, N.; Phillips, A.; Goldstein, L. D.; Howarth, M.; Cardelli, L.; Emmott, S.; Elliott, T.; Werner, J. M. (2011). Chakraborty, Arup K (ed.). "A Peptide Filtering Relation Quantifies MHC Class I Peptide Optimization". PLoS Computational Biology. 7 (10): e1002144. doi:10.1371/journal.pcbi.1002144. PMC 3195949. PMID 22022238.
  6. Cardelli, L. (1996). "Bad engineering properties of object-orient languages". ACM Computing Surveys. 28 (4es): 150–es. doi:10.1145/242224.242415.
  7. Cardelli, Luca; Wegner, Peter (December 1985). "On understanding types, data abstraction, and polymorphism" (PDF). ACM Computing Surveys. 17 (4): 471–523. CiteSeerX doi:10.1145/6041.6042. ISSN 0360-0300.
  8. Luca Cardelli author profile page at the ACM Digital Library
  9. Luca Cardelli at DBLP Bibliography Server
  10. List of publications from Microsoft Academic
  11. Luca Cardelli's publications indexed by the Scopus bibliographic database. (subscription required)
  12. Abadi, M.; Cardelli, L.; Curien, P. L.; Levy, J. J. (1990). "Explicit substitutions". Proceedings of the 17th ACM SIGPLAN-SIGACT symposium on Principles of programming languages - POPL '90. p. 31. CiteSeerX doi:10.1145/96709.96712. ISBN 978-0897913430.
  13. Cardelli, Luca (1982). An algebraic approach to hardware description and verification (PhD thesis). University of Edinburgh.
  14. McIlroy, M. D. (1987). A Research Unix reader: annotated excerpts from the Programmer's Manual, 1971–1986 (PDF) (Technical report). CSTR. Bell Labs. 139.
  15. The AITO Dahl-Nygaard Prize Winners for 2007

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