In memoriam: Roberto Confalonieri

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Roberto Confalonieri, who retired from the Institute’s ICT Service in 2008, passed away on 8 January 2020 at the age of 76.

Roberto joined the EUI in late 1978, working in the nascent Computing Service of the Institute. He remained there for nearly thirty years, a participant in the technological transformations required of modern research universities.

His former colleague Eric Gallo (now retired), with whom he worked for his entire career at the EUI, remembers him with affection: ‘I started working at the EUI Computing Service in 1976 […] Roberto joined us a couple of years later. I learnt a lot from Roberto and not only about computing. His vision of life was somewhat new to me and enlightened my thoughts in a permanent way. His sense of humour is well remembered and cherished.  For me and surely many others, his passing is a great loss.’

Roberto also served the Institute as member of the Staff Committee, an office he held with dedication and enthusiasm that he transmitted to other colleagues. As retired staff member Bonnie Bonis writes, ‘Roberto Confalonieri was one of the people I knew from my earliest times at the Institute, even before I moved into the ICT (Computing) Service in 1990. During the years in which we were colleagues in the same Service, there were numerous occasions for collaborative work together. However, the biggest influence Roberto had on me was in the social/representative aspect of life at the Institute. In fact, he was a member of the Staff Committee and as he was nearing retirement he approached me with the suggestion that I present myself as a candidate for the Committee so that he could step down with some assurance that there would be someone to take his place. I agreed to do it and ended up participating steadily in the representative bodies of the EUI staff ever since. This involvement has greatly enriched my experience at the Institute, and I thank him for it.’

Together with EUI colleagues and friends, we express our sincerest condolences to his wife and his daughter.