Chair of Software Engineering

Bertrand Meyer

Last updated 17 June 2023


Formerly Professor at ETH Zurich (department head 2004-2006). This page remains my main personal page.

Current academic position: Provost and Professor of Software Engineering at Constructor Institute, Schaffhausen (formerly Schaffhausen Institute of Technology).

Chief Technology Officer, Eiffel Software.

Recent books:

    + Just out (September 2022, online and printed versions available) Handbook of Requirements and Business Analysis (see details on the book page), a treatise and textbook about requirements, introduces a standard plan for requirements documents.

    + Agile! The Good, the Hype and the Ugly ( Amazon page), a presentation and unabashed critique of agile methods.

    + Touch of Class: Learning to Program Well, Using Objects & Contracts My introductory programming textbook, derived from 14 years of teaching the intro course at ETH then Innopolis and Constructor. (MOOCs also available).

    + In September 2022 I released for free access the text of my earlier book Object-Oriented Software Construction, second edition. You can find it at

Director of annual LASER software engineering summer school, since 2004 Elba Island, Italy, see the school's page (will restart in 2024).

Photographer of computer scientists: see the gallery.

Other relevant pages:

I am easy to contact; see at the bottom of this page.

(6 July 2023: I tweet every once in a while and for many years the above box displayed my latest tweets. Now — starting a few days ago — it no longer works, and, as you can see, it claims that I never tweeted. I hear that someone very smart is at work trying to improve Twitter; you can admire the first results above! If this doesn't get fixed I will remove the Twitter box altogether. You can still click “View on Twitter”. Sorry for the trouble.)



See the chair's research pages, and personal annotated list of publications: by date or by kind.

My work, proceeding at Constructor and Eiffel Software, covers most areas of software engineering, with Eiffel and Design by Contract as the unifying thread. Main topics:

    + Concurrency. My concurrency research was supported for 5 years by an Advanced Investigator Grant of the ERC, started at ETH and continued at Politecnico di Milano (2.5 M Euros, 2012-2017). See the Concurrency Made Easy project.

    + Program verification:on the basis of Eiffel's Design by Contract and the EiffelStudio IDE, buiding an environment allowing "Verification As a Matter Of Course", combining rpoofs and tests. You can try the Web version (no installation necessary, examples available online) of the AutoProof program proving system, developed first at ETH then at Constructor, at

    + Tool & method support for distributed development (CloudStudio project). See the pages on the Collaborative development course taught for many years in collaboration with many other university groups.

    + Programming education: novel pedagogical approaches. See a See an article listing my education-related pages.

    + Languages & methodology: new programming language constructs, software process, agile methods. See the Eiffel language pages.

    + Empirical software engineering.

    + O-O persistence and databases.

    + Software engineering for robotics. See the Roboscoop project pages.

PhD theses supervised:25 completed since 2004-2017. Currently (2022) supervised PhD students: Li Huang, Constructor, combining proofs and tests; Ilya Baimetov, Constructor, educational technology; Maria Naumcheva, University of Toulouse, requirements engineering.



The ETH introductory programming course, taught in English 2003-2009, in German 2010-2015, and at Innopolis University 2015-2018, uses an inverted curriculum approach supported by the Touch of Class textbook and a MOOC (open online version).

The course project in the Distributed Software Engineering Laboratory brings together students from ETH and universities around the world, who build a system collaboratively. We welcome universities interested in joining.

Multidisciplinary Robotics Programming Laboratory, open to CS, EE & ME students.

Other graduate & undergraduate courses: Software Verification; Concepts of Concurrent Computation; programming language courses (Eiffel in Depth, Java & C# in Depth); Software Architecture; Open-Source EiffelStudio Laboratory; independent-research courses. See course page.



Education: École Polytechnique, Paris; Stanford (MS in CS); ENST Paris; DEA Univ. P & M Curie (Paris VI); MA in Russian from Sorbonne (Paris IV); Dr. Sc. from Univ. of Nancy.

CV: Électricité de France 1974-1983; Univ. of California Santa Barbara 1983-1985; Eiffel Software, Santa Barbara since 1985 (president until 2001, then CTO); ETH Zurich 2001-2016.

Other positions: CEO of Société des Outils du Logiciel 1986-1990; adjunct professor, Monash Univ., Melbourne 1998-2003; chairman of TOOLS conferences 1988-2012. (After 50 conferences we declared The Triumph of Objects and closed the series — until asked to start it again as TOOLS 50+1 at Innopolis, and further sessions forthcoming). Adjunct professor, ITMO University, Saint Petersburg, 2011-2014 and Innopolis University, Kazan, 2014-2022 (resigned March 2022). Adjunct professor, Politecnico di Milano, 2016-2020, and University of Toulouse (IRIT, "Chair of Excellence"), 2016-2017.


    + Jolt Award (for Object-Oriented Software Construction).

    + Dahl-Nygaard prize for object technology (first awardee, 2003).

    + ACM Software System Award.

    + ACM Fellow.

    + IEEE Harlan D. Mills Award.

    + SIGSOFT (software engineering) Outstanding Educator Award.

    + IFIP Fellow (in first group of awardees, 2020).

    + IFIP Silver Core award.

    + ERC Advanced Investigator Grant.

    + Honorary doctorate from University of York (UK). (Also from ITMO, Russia, returned in March 2022.)

Trivia:Citeseer lists Object-Oriented Software Construction as the 65th most cited publication in computer science;Reusability: The Case for Object-Oriented Design appears in the list of the most influential papers published by IEEE Software in 25 years.

Current memberships: Académie des Technologies, Academia Europaea, IFIP WG2.3 (international working group on Programming Methodology).

Some past memberships: IFIP TC2 (Switzerland representative 2004-2011, committee chair 2009-2011); ACM Europe Council; IEEE Harland Mills prize (committee chair 2014-2018), ACM Fellows Committee; board of IMAG, Grenoble 2005-2008; scientific board of U. Paris VI (P & M Curie) 2008-2012; IEEE 60th Anniversary Award committee; ACM nominating committee 2007-2008.

Played important role in creation of: Colloque de Génie Logiciel (French software engineering conference); European Software Engineering Conference (first steering committee chair 1987-1990, general chair of ESEC/FSE 2013, steering committee member 2013-2018); TSI (Technology and Science of Informatics journal, first editor-in-chief); Journal of Object Technology (founding publisher 2002-2010, currently on steering board); Informatics Europe (first president 2006-2011, board member 2006-2013, chair of nominating committee 2014-2016).



Mailing address

Prof. Dr. Bertrand Meyer
Chair of Software Engineering
CAB E88CH-8092 ETH-Zentrum
Zürich, Switzerland

Physical address

CAB-Gebäude, Raum E88
Universitaetstrasse 6
Zürich (Kreis 6)


Phone: +41/44-632-0410
Fax: +41/44-632-1435
Email: click here


Claudia Günthart
CAB H31.1
Phone +41/44-632-8346
Winter views from our former offices in RZ building (click for full views):
City and lake, dawn City and Ütliberg Gray moment Sunset on Ütliberg
Dawn City & Ütliberg Gray moment Sunset on Ütliberg

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