Chile: SPRING mourns death of Prof. Ampuero

SPRING mourns the sudden death of the coordinator of the SPRING Programme Chile, Prof. Robinson Ampuero. While participating in a SPRING Conference in Tanzania, Prof. Ampuero suddenly died of a heart attack. We were and still are deeply shocked by his death and at first could not believe the news, as we knew Prof. Ampuero as an energetic manager and ardent mentor of the SPRING programme.

Robinson Ampuero studied Regional Science in Karlsruhe (Germany). He went on to become university professor in his home country Chile, bringing on board extensive professional and scientific experience.

At the end of 2005 he was appointed (together with Prof. Max-Neef) coordinator of the planned SPRING programme at the Faculdad de Ciencias Económicas y Administrativos of the Universidad Austral de Chile in Valdivia. He put all his efforts into establishing the SPRING programme in Valdivia as part of the global SPRING network. Thanks in large measure to Prof. Ampuero, in 2006 the first group of SPRING students was able to come to Valdivia for their second year of studies after finishing the first year in Dortmund. 

His firm and tireless commitment to the SPRING students and the programme was most evident in the way he facilitated, organized, guided and accompanied the students during their surveys and workshops on the island of Chiloé and in the Region de los Rios. These practice-oriented workshops with local representatives as well as the international conference organized by Prof. Ampuero on the topic of administrative decentralization and the newly established Region de los Rios were important milestones in establishing the reputation of SPRING as an academic programme oriented towards problem-solving.

For this legacy of hard work and pioneering achievements Robison Ampuero will be remembered by students, colleagues and planning professionals both in Chile and within the worldwide SPRING community.