Professor Stefano Zacchetti 1968-2020

Thursday 30 April 2020

It is with immense sadness that we announce the death of Professor Stefano Zacchetti, BA, PhD Venice, Yehan Numata Professor of Buddhist Studies and Professorial Fellow of Balliol. He died suddenly on 29 April 2020.

Professor Zacchetti’s research focused on early Chinese Buddhist translations (2nd-5th centuries CE); Mahāyāna literature in Sanskrit and Chinese; the history of the Chinese Buddhist canon; and Chinese Buddhism (particularly early Chinese Buddhist commentaries). His publications included the monograph In Praise of the Light (Tokyo 2005) and a number of articles.

Before joining Balliol in 2012 he was from 2001 to 2005 Associate Professor at the International Research Institute for Advanced Buddhology (Tokyo), and from 2005 to 2012 he worked as a tenured lecturer (ricercatore) at the Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Department of Asian and North African Studies. In autumn 2011 he taught as a Visiting Professor at the University of California, Berkeley. 

Dame Helen Ghosh (Master of Balliol) writes: ‘Our first thoughts are, of course, with his family in their terrible loss. The loss to us as a community is not just of his outstanding scholarship and inspiring teaching, but also of the warmth, good humour, friendship and boundless curiosity with which he enriched our lives in College. We will miss him enormously.’