'Father of the Internet' receives Honorary Degree from the University of Reading
Release Date 09 July 2015
The University of Reading is delighted to have presented Dr Vinton G Cerf for an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science.
Vinton G Cerf is widely known as one of the ‘fathers of the internet', co-designing the TCP/IP protocols and the architecture of the Internet. Today, at the age of 72, he is Vice President and Chief Internet Evangelist for Google, contributing to global policy development and the continued spread of the Internet.
Dr Cerf has received numerous awards including the US Presidential Medal of Freedom, US National Medal of Technology, the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering, the Charles Stark Draper award and Officer of the Legion d'Honneur. In 2012 President Obama appointed him to the National Science Board.
Vinton served as chairman of the board of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN); has been a Visiting Scientist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and also served as founding president of the Internet Society (ISOC).
Dr Cerf's fellowships include the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the British Computer Society. Vinton is also a member of the National Academy of Engineering.
Dr Cerf said: "The University of Reading has a well-earned reputation in the academic world. The award of this degree honoris causa means a great deal to me, personally and professionally. I hope I can continue to earn this distinction in the future."
Vinton was presented for an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science by Professor Ben Cosh, Dean of the Faculty of Science.
Professor Cosh said: "It was a great honour to present Vinton with his honorary degree. His insight, innovation, and commitment has transformed the lives of people across the globe. It is difficult to imagine our lives without the internet - from booking a train ticket or talking face-to-face with a loved one on the other side of the world, to having breaking global news at your fingertips through the advent of social media. Dr Cerf has revolutionised the way we communicate."
Dr Cerf is a hearing aid user and together with his wife, Sigrid Cerf, who has a cochlear implant, is a strong role-model for deaf people and innovative forms of communication.
After the ceremony Vinton and his wife Sigrid met with Ken Carter, Founder and Executive Director of Decibels, a charitable company with the aim of promoting the arts-based education and training of disabled children and young people. Ken is also Director of the Deafax Research and Development Unit, of which Dr Cerf is Honorary President. Both charities are based at the University's London Road Campus and work closely with the Institute of Education.
They also met with Cathy Wardale, Programme Director of Theatre Arts, Education and Deaf Studies. This unique course is offered nowhere else in the world and offers the chance to study theatre arts, education and deaf studies together, with a focus on Sign Theatre.
Dr Cerf then visited the University's Learning Hub where he discovered a unique innovative learning tool - a talking pen pal book which allows children who speak different languages to learn together in one classroom.