Rick Schlichting

Distinguished Visiting Professor
Computer Science Department
United States Naval Academy

Office: Michelson 327
Tel: 410-293-6805
Email: schlicht@usna.edu
CV (pdf)


Fall 2018: Operating Systems (IC411)

Research Interests

Distributed systems, fault-tolerant and highly dependable systems, cloud computing, network functions virtualization (NFV) and network clouds, edge computing, networks


Rick received a B.A. degree in mathematics and history from the College of William and Mary in 1977, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in computer science from Cornell University in 1979 and 1982, respectively. From 1982-2000, he was on the faculty in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Arizona, where he rose to the rank of Professor.  From 2000-2017, he was in the Research organization at AT&T Labs, first in Florham Park, NJ and then at 33 Thomas St. in New York, NY.  As a department head at AT&T, he managed several different departments, including the Dependable Distributed Computing and Communication Research Department (2001-04),  the Software Systems Research Department (2004-12), and  the Software and Distributed Systems Research Department (2012-13).  He was also an individual contributor as a Distinguished Member of Technical Staff-Research and a Distinguished Inventive Scientist (2013-17).

Rick has long been active in advocating the value of international collaboration in computer science, with a special focus on Japan based on the two sabbaticals he spent there.  The first was in 1990 as a Visiting Researcher at Tokyo Institute of Technology where he carried out collaborative research in the area of fault-tolerant software, and the second was in 1996-97 as a Visiting Chief Researcher at Hitachi Central Research Lab where the joint research involved the use of heterogeneous distributed processing for scientific applications.  He founded the JapanCS Project at Arizona dedicated to increasing the awareness and accessibility of Japanese scientific and technical information (JSTI) related to computing, and ran it from 1990-2000.  As part of this, he moderated the comp.research.japan newsgroup on USENET, and maintained a website with an online electronic archives of JSTI.  He continued coordinating and participating in on-going collaborations with Japanese scientists while at AT&T.

Rick has been an ACM Fellow since 2001 and an IEEE Fellow since 2002, and has served on the editorial boards of IEEE Concurrency, IEEE Transactions on Computers, IEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems, and IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering.  He has been a member of IFIP Working 10.4 on Dependable Computing and Fault Tolerance since 1986 and was  Chair from 2006-12.  He is also active in the IEEE Computer Society Technical Committee on Dependable Computing and Fault Tolerance, serving as Chair of that organization from 1998-99. 

Selected Awards

Faculty of Science Distinguished Teaching Award, University of Arizona, May 1987.

1993-94 Distributed Systems Engineering Journal Premium (best paper award), Institution of Electrical Engineers (UK), for the paper ``Consul: A Communication Substrate for Fault-Tolerant Distributed Systems, by S. Mishra, L. Peterson, R. Schlichting,'' August 1995.

Named ACM Fellow, for ``Influential research on fault-tolerant and dependable computing, configurable network protocols, and distributed systems.  Outstanding leadership of and service to the computing community,'' March 2001.

Best Paper Award, IFIP/ACM International Conference on Distributed Systems Platforms (Middleware 2001), for the paper ``Providing QoS Customization in Distributed Object Systems, by J. He, M. Hiltunen, M. Rajagopalan, R. Schlichting,'' November 2001.

Named IEEE Fellow, ``For contributions to dependable computing and distributed systems,''  January 2002.

IFIP Outstanding Service Award, ``For outstanding contributions to IFIP and the Informatics Community,'' September 2011.

Jean-Claude Laprie Award in Dependable Computing, for the paper  ``Fail-Stop Processors: An Approach to Designing Fault-Tolerant Computing Systems, ACM Transactions on Computer Systems 1, 3 (August 1983), by R. Schlichting, F. Schneider,'' June 2017.


A reasonably complete list of publications can be found here.


A list of most of the patents granted for work done while at AT&T can be found here.

Last updated: August 11, 2018