Andrzej Rakowski 1931–2018

ESCOM mourns the passing of our esteemed colleague Andrzej Rakowski on 3 April 2018 in Warsaw, at the age of 87.

Rakowski played a key role in the founding of ESCOM in 1990 and served as President from 2001 to 2003. For two decades he was the society's most important Eastern European representative. ESCOM was just one of many academic institutions and societies in acoustics, psychology/cognition and music, both within Poland and internationally, to which he made essential contributions.

Rakowski’s psychoacoustical research addressed pitch perception, intonation, pitch memory, absolute pitch, pitch shift, loudness, timbre, and roughness. His publications belong to the foundations of our academic academic discipline.  Remarkably, much of the work was performed behind the iron curtain during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.

We remember Andrzej Rakowski as a kind and gentle man with a twinkle in his eye who took an active interest in the research of his colleagues and quietly asked perceptive questions. Our founding permanent secretary Irène Deliège often met him at events that they co-organised and remembers innumerable long and memorable conversations. John Sloboda writes: “I recall many meetings where his scientific acumen and personal courtesy were a valuable and very noticeable contribution. His work established the highest standards of scientific rigour and international visibility, and has been a model and an inspiration for generations of scientists.”

We are saddened by the loss of this remarkable personality and leading researcher and send our deepest condolences to his wife and family.

The ESCOM Executive Council