Maria Christakis wins the EAPLS Best PhD Dissertation Award 2015

by Arend Rensink, Feb. 27, 2017

The EAPLS Best PhD Dissertation Award 2015 has been won by Dr. Maria Christakis (ETH Zürich), for her dissertation on "Narrowing the gap between verification and systematic testing".

It is the great pleasure of the European Association on Programming Languages and Systems to announce the outcome of the EAPLS Best Dissertation Award 2015.

This award is given to the PhD student who has made the most original and influential contribution to the area of Programming Languages and Systems, and has graduated in 2015 at a European academic institute. The purpose of the award is to draw attention to excellent work, to help the career of the student in question, and to promote the research field as a whole.

The winner of this edition of the EAPLS Dissertation Award is

  • Dr. Maria Christakis
    ETH Zürich, Switzerland

for her dissertation on

  • Narrowing the gap between verification and systematic testing

supervised by Peter Müller. The winner was selected by a committee of international experts. Details on the procedure can be found at The candidate theses were judged on originality, impact, relevance, and quality of writing.

The jury concluded unanimously that Dr. Christakis' dissertation is an outstanding piece of work; it received the best marks amidst some very strong contenders. A summary of the jury's findings:

  • The thesis contains an effort in combining verification and testing, fields that seemed to be disjoint to date.
  • This thesis presents both novel theoretical and practical results on a high level. There are contributions that advance the state of the art both in testing and verification as well as a case study on a real piece of software.
  • Her contributions are significant and novel, the breadth is also "unusual" or "impressive", and she implemented and evaluated with industrial tools.
  • The results have been published in a series of internationally well-known conferences: FM, TACAS, ICSE, VMCAI, SEFM, RV, and SPIN.
  • The dissertation is very well written.

We offer Dr. Christakis our heartfelt congratulations with her achievement. We are confident that it will be a sign of a long and distinguished scientific career.