Vinton Cerf, honorary doctor of the URV and father of the Internet, will receive the 2018 Catalonia International Prize

He is the co-creator of the IP protocol, which has made the Internet possible, and vice-president of Google

Vinton Cerf, vice-president of Google and co-creator of the IP protocol. Photo: Wikimedia.

The 30th edition of the Catalonia International Prize awarded by the Catalan Government will go to the American engineer Vinton Cerf, regarded as one of the fathers of the Internet. Cerf was awarded an honorary doctorate by URV in 2000 and is the co-designer, along with Robert Khan, of the TCP/IP protocol, the basic programme underlying all communications on the Internet. The prize is awarded to individuals who have made a decisive contribution to developing cultural, scientific and human values around the world and it is to be given to Cerf in recognition of his role in the technological and social development of the Internet, which he has worked to make a basic infrastructure accessible to everyone.

It is the first time that the jury has given the prize to a technologist, and it has done so because he is the creator of the IP protocol and has both publically and privately worked and reflected on social, political and legal aspects of the Internet. When announcing the winner of the 2018 prize, the president of the Catalan Government, Quim Torra, highlighted Cerf’s connections with Catalonia insofar as he was president of the international body that authorised the use of the .cat domain. He is currently global vice-president of Google.

Manel Sanromà, professor at the URV and currently CEO of the puntCAT Foundation, sponsored Vinton Cerf during his investiture as a doctor of the URV and said that “although it is true that Kleinrock, Roberts, Crocker, Postel, Kahn and a few others share with Cerf the scientific and intellectual paternity of this child that we call the Internet, nobody else has followed as closely as Cerf the development of their own child, concerned about a 1001 aspects of the great Web of Webs”.

There were 109 candidates for the prize, which will be presented on 25 March 2019 in the Palace of the Catalan Government.

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