Sebastian Nanz  

I'm a lecturer in the Department of Computer Science of ETH Zurich and a researcher at the Chair of Software Engineering.

Before coming to ETH in 2009, I worked in the Language-Based Technology Group at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) in Copenhagen, and in the Security Group of Microsoft Research Cambridge. I did my PhD at Imperial College London.

Before my PhD, I was a research assistant at Yale University, USA. I have graduated with Master's degrees in mathematics and computer science from Technische Universität München, Germany.

Research Interests

  • Concurrency, Parallelism, Distribution
  • Programming Languages
  • Software Verification
  • Software Engineering
  • Mobile Computing
  • Information Security


Rosetta Code Study

Rosetta Code is a popular repository of example programs written in many different programming languages. Rosetta Code is also a great resource to compare programming languages and analyze their properties. Read our ICSE'15 paper A Comparative Study of Programming Languages in Rosetta Code, and join the discussion, for example on Slashdot.

Concurrency Made Easy

Watch a short video where you can meet the team and learn about the goals of Concurrency Made Easy, our ERC Advanced Grant on concurrent programming:


  • ESEM 2015: 9th International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, 19–23 October 2015, Beijing, China. (PC member)
  • ACSD 2015: 15th International Conference on Application of Concurrency to System Design, 21–26 June 2015, Brussels, Belgium. (PC member)
  • Research Tools and Demonstrations Track at FSE 2014, 16–22 November 2014, Hong Kong, China. (PC member)
  • ACSD 2014: 14th International Conference on Application of Concurrency to System Design, 23–27 June 2014, Tunis, Tunisia. (PC member)
  • ICFEM 2013: 15th International Conference on Formal Engineering Methods, 29 October–1 November 2013, Queenstown, New Zealand. (PC member)
  • Tool Demos Track at the 9th joint meeting ESEC/FSE 2013, 19–23 August 2013, St. Petersburg, Russia. (PC co-chair)
  • ISARCS 2012: 3rd International ACM Sigsoft Symposium on Architecting Critical Systems. 26–28 June 2012, Bertinoro, Italy. (PC member)
  • TOOLS Europe 2012: 50th International Conference on Objects, Models, Components, Patterns. 29–31 May 2012, Prague, Czech Republic. (PC co-chair)
  • ISARCS 2011: 2nd International ACM Sigsoft Symposium on Architecting Critical Systems. 20–24 June 2011, Boulder, Colorado, USA. (PC member)
  • FOSE 2010: The Future of Software Engineering Symposium. 22–23 November 2010, Zurich, Switzerland. (Program chair)
  • Eiffel at 25: A FOSE 2010 workshop, celebrating 25 years of the Eiffel language. 24 November 2012, Zurich, Switzerland. (Program chair)
  • FMWS 2008: Workshop on Formal Methods for Wireless Systems 2008. 23 August 2008, Toronto, Canada. (PC member)


Edgar G. Daylight, Sebastian Nanz (Eds.). The Future of Software Engineering: Panel Discussions. Lonely Scholar, 2011.

Speaking about the field of software engineering in general terms is difficult, as is revealed in these panel discussions from the Future of Software Engineering Symposium. Top researchers debate whether any real progress has been made during the past decades and how to distinguish between good and bad software. The relationship with other disciplines, such as mechanical engineering and civil engineering, is heavily discussed. Panel I allows the reader to compare and contrast dominant voices in software engineering; it serves as an aid for lecturers in explaining to engineering students how to see the wood for the trees in the complicated field of software engineering.

Panel II addresses specific topics in software engineering, such as concurrency, program verification, and the contradistinction between software today versus how it should be in the future. Is it possible to increase the level of abstraction without paying a price in program performance? What is the difference between engineering verification and real verification? What is the role of program specifications in today's development practice? Answers to these questions are presented in Panel II.

Panelists: Barry Boehm, Manfred Broy, Erich Gamma, Michael A. Jackson, David L. Parnas, Niklaus Wirth, and Pamela Zave (Panel I). Yuri Gurevich, Rustan Leino, Bertrand Meyer, Andreas Zeller, and Patrick Cousot (Panel II).

More information on the book:

Sebastian Nanz (Ed.). The Future of Software Engineering. Springer, 2011.

This book focuses on defining the achievements of software engineering in the past decades and showcasing visions for the future. It features a collection of articles by some of the most prominent researchers and technologists who have shaped the field: Barry Boehm, Manfred Broy, Patrick Cousot, Erich Gamma, Yuri Gurevich, Tony Hoare, Michael A. Jackson, Rustan Leino, David L. Parnas, Dieter Rombach, Joseph Sifakis, Niklaus Wirth, Pamela Zave, and Andreas Zeller. The contributed articles reflect the authors' individual views on what constitutes the most important issues facing software development. Both research- and technology-oriented contributions are included.

More information on the book:

More information on related events:

  • FOSE: The Future of Software Engineering Symposium. 22-23 November 2010, Zurich, Switzerland.
  • Watch video recordings of all talks at the FOSE Symposium.