October 2001 Jamboree - About the ETH
<about the eth>
The Federal Institute of Technology Zurich,
or - to give the university its German acronym - the ETH, was founded by
the Swiss goverment in 1854 as a polytechnic and opened its doors in Zurich in
1855. Until 1969 it was the only national university in Switzerland. In its
core areas of engineering, natural sciences, architecture, and mathematics it
is one of the leading academic research institutions world wide.
The ETH itself comprises 17 departments, 330 professors and
about 840 lecturers who fulfill teaching obligations
and conduct research.
A staff of more than 7'500 - with a 25% proportion of women - work in teaching,
research and administration. Current statistics
of the ETH show 11'700 registered students. Each year about 1'250 receive
an ETH diploma and a further 530 complete a doctoral thesis. Current annual
expenditure has reached 1 billion Swiss francs.
The Department of Computer Science at the
ETH consists of four Institutes: the Institute of Computer Systems, the Institute of
Information Systems, the Institute of
Theoretical Computer Science, and the Institute for Scientific
Computing. Currently, 22 professors, several senior research
associates, around 100 research assistants, and the permanent
technical and administrative staff form the department's crew of some 130
The Department offers a 9 semesters (i.e., 4.5 years) diploma program in
computer science and a PhD program. Currently, about 800 Diploma students and
100 PhD students are registered.
The main current research themes are databases, global information
systems, information management, distributed systems, operating systems,
software construction, programming languages and their compilers (the
programming languages Pascal and Modula have emerged from ETH Zurich),
computer graphics, computer vision, computational biochemistry, parallel
computing, numerical linear algebra, computational geometry, combinatorial
algorithms, algorithmic geometry, information security and cryptography,
logic programming, ubiquitous computing.