Pierre-Jacques Courtois is a professor of computer science in the engineering department of the Catholic University of Louvain-la-Neuve in Belgium. He has degrees in electrical engineering and nuclear physics, and a doctorate in applied sciences. Formerly with the Philips Research Laboratory in Brussels, he has been working for the last fifteen years at the Belgian authorized inspection agency for nuclear installations, where he is in charge of the assessment of safety critical software based systems used in nuclear power plants. He has served as a consultant to the OECD and to the IAEA for issuing guidance on the design and validation of software important to nuclear safety. He has also served as the chairman of the European Commission nuclear regulator task force on licensing issues of nuclear safety critical software, and he has been active in several European research projects on dependable computer systems and nuclear safety.