Klaus R. Dittrich was a full professor at the Department of Informatics from 1989 to 2007. He was the head of the Database Technology Research Group and department head of the Department of Informatics from 2003 to 2007.
Klaus R. Dittrich got his diploma and PhD degrees from the University of Karlsruhe, Germany. He became widely known for the manifesto on object-oriented databases, a highly influential paper with more than 1600 citations, and for his work in engineering databases and their applications to VLSI design and software engineering. Some of this work was done while he was a postdoc at IBM Almaden Research Labs in San Jose, California. In 1989 he joined the Department of Informatics at UZH as a professor of database technology.
Klaus was a truly outstanding scholar with world-wide reputation in the database community. He made ground-breaking contributions in areas like object-oriented and active database systems. He was on the VLDB Endowment’s Board of Trustees for many years and editor-in-chief of the VLDB Journal. Posthumously he received the ACM SIGMOD Contributions Award “for lifetime dedication and service to the database community” in 2008.
Beyond that, Klaus was a wonderful colleague. All who have known him will remember his smile, his sense of humor, his constructive attitude towards solving problems and his warm support for all of us in the department.
Klaus R. Dittrich died of a stroke on November 20, 2007 at the age of 56 while on a sabbatical at HP Labs in California.
Martin Glinz, Department Head 2007-2016