Professor Hans-Peter Künzi 1955-2020

31 Aug 2020 - 12:45

The Department of Mathematics and Applied Mathematics at UCT has been greatly saddened by the death of Professor Hans-Peter Künzi while on sabbatical in Switzerland. Although we knew he was ill, this has come as a shock to us all. Hans-Peter was the leader of the Topology Research Group here at UCT, but his support also extended to cooperation with colleagues working in Category Theory, Algebra and Analysis.

Hans-Peter first came to UCT in the 1980’s as a postdoctoral student with Guillaume Brümmer. He returned to UCT and to the Department when, after appointments in various capacities in Europe and the USA, he was appointed as Full Professor in the year 2000. In 2011 he became a UCT Fellow.

He was highly respected internationally for his research, as evidenced by his NRF A-rating, and he was a leader in his primary area of research, aspects of asymmetric topology. In July 2004 he was the main organizer of the 19th Summer Conference on Topology and its Applications, one of the large annual conferences in his field, which was held at the University of Cape Town. He has a large number of publications – over 200 - and many co-authors. He also published in the areas of order and in combinatorics. He was on a number of Editorial Boards, including Quaestiones Mathematicae, the Journal of the South African Mathematical Society, and had a large number of research students.

Hans-Peter’s willingness to take on the position of HoD for the period August 2012 – December 2016 was a clear indication of his commitment to the well-being of us all in the Department.

We will all miss him. He was very supportive of our individual efforts and initiatives, even when they were not necessarily in his direct line of research.