Sam Staton

A photo of me
Associate Professor
Royal Society University Research Fellowship

Department of Computer Science,
University of Oxford

Room 421
Wolfson Building, Parks Road
Oxford OX1 3QD
+44 (0)1865 (2)73893
sam.staton at

Interests: My research is in programming language theory, and I'm also interested in logic and category theory. I've recently been especially interested in two kinds of programming language:

Aside from these recent interests, I've been involved in various foundational aspects of programming language theory. One key theme has been computational monads and algebraic theories: This line of work stems from the observation that notions of computation can be determined by program equations using techniques from universal algebra. I have presented new algebraic frameworks to analyze program equations for quantum computation (POPL 2015), jumps (LICS 2014), local store and pi-calculus (LICS 2013, FOSSACS 2010 and MFPS 2009) and functional logic programming (FOSSACS 2013). See WACT 2014 for a categorical perspective. I've also been involved in game semantics (LICS 2014) and categorical operational semantics (e.g. LICS 2008, LICS 2006, LMCS 2011).

Quick biography: Royal Society University Research Fellowship (Jan 2015 —) at Oxford (Mar 2015 —) and Cambridge (Jan 2015 — Feb 2015); Researcher in Nijmegen on ERC project Quantum Computation, Logic, and Security (Oct 2013 — Dec 2014). Fixed-term lectureship at Cambridge (Jan 2011 — Oct 2013), partly supported by my grant from the Isaac Newton Trust / EPSRC Strategic Fund. Researcher on the ANR project CHOCO: Curry-Howard and Concurrency Theory at Lab PPS, Paris (June 2010 — Jan 2011). EPSRC Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship in Theoretical Computer Science, at Cambridge: Mathematical Operational Semantics for Data-Passing Processes (June 2007 — May 2010). Research assistant on EPSRC grant Domain Theory for Concurrency — New Categorical Foundations (Jan 2006 — May 2007). PhD Student with Marcelo Fiore (Oct 2002 — Dec 2006).

Publications and preprints

Students and RAs

Courses taught: Principles of Programming Languages. A course on coalgebra jointly with Alexandra Silva in Nijmegen; Courses on Discrete mathematics I, Semantics of programming languages, and Category theory and logic.

Responsibilities and events

I currently run the Departmental Seminars series and co-organize the OASIS seminars in Oxford.

Programme committee co-chair: 30th Conference on Mathematical Foundations of Programming Semantics (MFPS XXX).

Programme committee member: 44th ACM SIGPLAN-SIGACT Symposium on Principles of Programming Languages (POPL 2017); 26th European Symposium on Programming (ESOP 2017); Workshop on Syntax and Semantics of Low-level Languages (LOLA 2016); 10th International Workshop on Fixed Points in Computer Science (FICS 2015); 6th Conference on Algebra and Coalgebra in Computer Science (CALCO 2015); 3rd ACM-SIGPLAN Workshop on Higher-Order Programming with Effects (HOPE 2014); Combined 21st International Workshop on Expressiveness in Concurrency and 11th Workshop on Structured Operational Semantics (EXPRESS/SOS 2014); 11th International Workshop on Domain Theory and Applications (Domains XI); 18th ACM SIGPLAN International Conference on Functional Programming (ICFP 2013); Workshop on Syntax and Semantics of Low-Level Languages (LOLA 2013); 5th Conference on Algebra and Coalgebra in Computer Science (CALCO 2013); 21st Conference on Computer Science Logic (CSL 2012), 4th Workshop on Mathematically Structured Functional Programming (MSFP 2012); 11th International Workshop on Coalgebraic Methods in Computer Science (CMCS 2012); 9th Asian Symposium on Programming Languages and Systems (APLAS 2011); 4th Conference on Algebra and Coalgebra (CALCO 2011); 8th International Workshop on Structural Operational Semantics (SOS 2011); 7th International Workshop on Structural Operational Semantics (SOS 2010). External review committee of 39th ACM SIGPLAN-SIGACT Symposium on Principles of Programming Languages (POPL 2012).

Steering committee: IEEE Symposium on Logic in Computer Science (LICS).

Organizing committees: Local organizer: FSCD 2017; CALCO 2015 and MFPS XXXI; International Conference on Category Theory (CT 2014); Informal Workshop on Programming with Handlers (Cambridge June 2013).

Some recent/upcoming invited talks: Uncertainty in Computation, 2016; QSLC 2016; WIP 2016; MFPS 2016; CHOCOLA, Jan 2016; S-REPLS2, Nov 2015; MFPS 2015.