Skip to main content

Martin Lester

Personal photo - Martin Lester

Martin Lester

Senior Teaching Assistant

Wolfson Building, Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3QD


I am interested in the theory and application of type systems in programming languages. This covers several areas of computer science, including the semantics of programming languages, the underlying mathematical structures and methods of formal verification.

Working with Steven Ramsay and Robin Neatherway, I was involved in the development of THORS, a model-checker for verifying Alternation-Free Mu Calculus properties (and hence CTL properties) on value trees generated by Higher Order Recursion Schemes. We believe this work is applicable to verifying liveness properties of higher order functional programs.

My research currently focuses on the verification of information security properties in dynamically typed languages, such as JavaScript. In particular, I am studying how to produce a more principled analysis of metaprogramming constructs such as eval, which are ignored by most existing static analyses. Working with Max Schaefer under the guidance of Luke Ong, we have produced an information flow analysis for a JavaScript-like language with staged metaprogramming. We are hoping to publish our work in 2013.


My undergraduate degree was a BA in Computer Science, gained while studying at Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge (2003-2006). After a period working as a software developer for Autonomy Systems, I studied for the MSc in Mathematics and Foundations of Computer Science at St Edmund Hall College, Oxford (2008-2009). I am currently studying for a DPhil in Computer Science at Merton College, Oxford, under the supervision of Luke Ong.

I was part of the team from Luke Ong's research group that won the ICFP Programming Contest in 2011. Our winning entry was written in the functional programming language F#.