Obituary: Hans-Bjørn Foxby – University of Copenhagen

02 May 2014

Obituary: Hans-Bjørn Foxby


Hans-Bjørn Foxby, born 12 February 1947, was MSc in 1969 and Licentiate (PhD) in 1973 from the University of Copenhagen. Since 1975 he has been employed at the Department of Mathematical Sciences, UCPH, first as an associate professor and later as a senior associate professor (1988).

Hans-Bjørn FoxbyHans-Bjørn was Head of Department in the period 1987-90. In 1988, he was the initiator of the Algebra Research Group, and from 1990 he was for many years the Department’s representative in the Faculty Council.

As a teacher, Hans-Bjørn was very popular, and since 1994 he has graduated seven PhD students, most of whom have pursued a university career.

Hans-Bjørn’s research was in commutative algebra, and he had an extensive international network. His more than 30 articles are still widely cited, and they have had a major impact in the field. Hans-Bjørn had extended stays abroad at the University of Illinois (1973) and the University of Oklahoma (1981).

A special issue of the Journal of Pure and Applied Algebra was dedicated to Hans-Bjørn on the occasion of his 65th birthday.

Hans-Bjørn was very much a family man and in his spare time he was interested, among other things, in cycling, birds and square dance.

In 2009, Hans-Bjørn Foxby was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease and he died peacefully in his sleep on 8 April 2014. He is survived by his wife (Ulla), three children (Nana, Iben and Sidsel), sons in law and grandchildren, who all miss him. So do we at the Department of Mathematical Sciences.