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Programming Language Foundations in Agda

YOW! Lambda Jam 2019


Clone the repository at

This is the textbook for the course.

Install Agda, the Agda standard library, and configure the plfa library. This can be done by following the instructions under the heading

Getting Started with PLFA



This course is an introduction to formal methods in Agda, covering datatypes, recursion, structural induction, indexed datatypes, dependent functions, and induction over evidence; with focus on formal definitions of naturals, addition, and inequality, and their properties.

The textbook is freely available online:

  • Programming Language Foundations in Agda

The book has been used for teaching by me at:

  • University of Edinburgh (Sep-Dec 2018)
  • Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio) (Mar-Jul 2019)
  • University of Padova (Jun 2019)

and by others at

  • University of Vermont
  • Google Seattle.

The book is described in a paper (of the same title) at the XXI
Brazilian Symposium on Formal Methods, 28--30 Nov 2018, which is
available here:

The paper won the SBMF 2018 Best Paper Award, 1st Place.

Philip Wadler

Professor of Theoretical Computer Science

University of Edinburgh

United Kingdom

Philip Wadler is an ACM Fellow and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, past chair of ACM SIGPLAN, past holder of a Royal Society-Wolfson Research Merit Fellowship, winner of the SIGPLAN Distinguished Service Award, and a winner of the POPL Most Influential Paper Award. Previously, he worked or studied at Stanford, Xerox Parc, CMU, Oxford, Chalmers, Glasgow, Bell Labs, and Avaya Labs, and visited as a guest professor in Copenhagen, Sydney, and Paris. He has an h-index of 60, with more than 20,000 citations to his work according to Google Scholar. He contributed to the designs of Haskell, Java, and XQuery, and is a co-author of Introduction to Functional Programming (Prentice Hall, 1988), XQuery from the Experts (Addison Wesley, 2004) and Generics and Collections in Java (O’Reilly, 2006). He has delivered invited talks in locations ranging from Aizu to Zurich.