Paul Spirakis#

A short laudatio by Hermann Maurer, Graz / Austria, December 2010#

Paul distinguishes himself through an impressing array of important publications in a number areas such as probabilistic methods in algorithms, combinatorial optimization, average case analysis of algorithms, parallel algorithms, algorithms and protocols for distributed systems, algorithms and complexity of graph theoretic problems, parallel complexity, approximations to hard problems design and applications of network protocols, security in computer networks, telematics problems and services, performance analysis of computer systems, of algorithms for databases and distributed systems and his successful efforts to influence research, education and informatics policies in Greece and Europe.

Spirakis, at age 54 has published over 330 prestigious refereed papers, almost 100 in high-quality journals. He has successfully supervised over 30 Ph.D. students, and his papers are quoted in many important publication, e.g. numerous times in the four standard books: 1. Fault Tolerant Parallel Computation , Alex Schwartsman , MIT Press, 2. Limits of Parallel Computation , Ruzzo et al , Prentice Hall, 3. Randomised Algorithms , Motwani and Raghavan, 4. Algorithmic Game Theory , Nisan , Roughgarden, Tardos,Vazirani. His influence goes far beyond what his CiteseerX rating (around 5400) would suggest, as is witnessed not just by his publications, but by the fact that he has written some 10 textbooks in Greek (and a number of publications in Greek languages all of which have not been taken into account in the numbers mentioned earlier), and that he is editor or co-editor of some 20 regular publications and a number of books, that he is influential in all decisions on Computer Science in Greece and in Europe. This is also shown in his long record (some 100) of invited and keynote presentations and the number of international and national committees he has served on, a partial list is more than impressive:

  • Member of the Advisory Board of the Region of Western Greece for Research and Innovation, since January 2009
  • Member of the Faculty Selection Commitee , Open Univ. Cyprus, Nicosia , June 2007
  • Member of the Ministry of Education Commitee on the design of the Ministry's proposal for the 7th EU Framework, May 2006
  • Member of the evaluation commitees for the large scale informatization of Greek customs , the Greek Post-offices and the Command and Control system of the Ministry of Naval Commerce. Also, member of the strategic design commitees for the informatization of the Greek law and justice , and for Informatics in Education
  • President of the Ministry of Justice Commitee for the monitoring and delivery of the Digital Central Criminal Records Committee, contuous since 2003
  • Greek representative in the Information Society Research Programme (IST) from Jan 99 till June 02
  • Member of the Info Society Technologies Advisory Group (ISTAG , a prestigeous body of about 40 individuals advising EU for research policy , from Jan 03 to Jan 05
  • Member of the Prime Minister commitee for the Prime Minister Office Archivals, Spring 1998
  • Member of the Parliament Dept for Citizens Privacy, Sept. 1997 to Sept 1999.
  • Member of Special Group of Minister of Industry for Informatics Research from Spring 1995 to Dec 2004
  • EU DG XVI Expert 1992 to 1993
  • Head of the Greek State Commitee on Informatics and Education (Ministry of Education), Jan 94 to Jan 1997.
  • Greek task force on Telematics (Bangemann Commitee) 1994 .
  • Executive Council Member of the Computer Tech. Institute (CTI), continuous since 88
  • Member of the Patras Univ. Senate (87-89 , 91-93 and 94-96 )
  • Vice-chair of the Counsil of the Informatics Development Bureaugh, Ministry of the Presidency, April 89 to 91
  • Spirakis was involved as PC member, PC chair or member of the steering committee of over 150 (!) scientific conferences and worked as reviewers for an incredible number of journals and organisations.

Thus, Paul Spirakis is not only an excellent researcher, but also someone who makes sure that his results and ideas do not just fill papers but do influence political decisions and research that relate to Informatics.

Welcome, Paul, to Academia Europaea!

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