It is with great sadness that we announce the sudden and untimely death of Stefano Zacchetti, Yehan Numata Professor of Buddhist Studies in the Faculty of Oriental Studies and Fellow of Balliol College. Our thoughts are with his wife and his two sons.
Stefano joined the Faculty of Oriental Studies in 2012. Before coming to Oxford, he was Associate Professor at the International Research Institute for Advanced Buddhology in Tokyo (2001-2005) and Lecturer at Ca’ Foscari in Venice (2005-2012).
His research interests included the development and transmission of the “Perfection of Wisdom” (prajñāpāramitā) Sūtras, early Chinese translations of Mahāyāna scriptures, and the formation of the Chinese Buddhist canon. He had just completed the manuscript of a monograph on the *Mahāprajñāpāramitopadeśa and the Larger Prajñāpāramitā, which will be a milestone in the exploration of this important part of Mahāyāna Buddhist literature.
Stefano has been the cornerstone and mastermind of the Buddhist Studies programme at Oxford. He has trained and mentored Master’s and doctoral students; he has enriched the field by organising guest lectures, reading groups, and academic events; and he has shaped the profile of Buddhist Studies at Oxford through his outstanding expertise. For his students he has been a caring and inspiring teacher and mentor, and his colleagues will remember his diverse and wide-ranging interests, his profound knowledge, his humility, his human warmth, his unfailing good humour, and his sartorial elegance.
The Faculty will not be the same without Stefano Zacchetti, and we will miss him enormously.