A logic for parametric polymorphism

  • Gordon Plotkin
  • Martín Abadi
Conference paper

DOI: 10.1007/BFb0037118

Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 664)
Cite this paper as:
Plotkin G., Abadi M. (1993) A logic for parametric polymorphism. In: Bezem M., Groote J.F. (eds) Typed Lambda Calculi and Applications. TLCA 1993. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol 664. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg


In this paper we introduce a logic for parametric polymorphism. Just as LCF is a logic for the simply-typed λ-calculus with recursion and arithmetic, our logic is a logic for System F. The logic permits the formal presentation and use of relational parametricity. Parametricity yields-for example-encodings of initial algebras, final co-algebras and abstract datatypes, with corresponding proof principles of induction, co-induction and simulation.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gordon Plotkin
    • 1
  • Martín Abadi
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of EdinburghEdinburghUK
  2. 2.Systems Research CenterDigital Equipment CorporationPalo AltoUSA

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