News Details | 06-Dec-2011

NTU President, Professor Bertil Andersson receives honorary doctorate from India’s President

India’s President Pratibha Patil has presented NTU president, Professor Bertil Andersson with an honorary Doctor in Letters from Symbiosis International University (SIU), a multi-institutional university in India.

This was at SIU’s 8th convocation at its Lavale campus near Pune on Saturday, 3 Dec 2011.

In his acceptance speech for the D.Litt, Prof Andersson, said he was honoured to be recognised for the doctorate and that there was vast potential for co-operation between NTU and SIU.

"The NTU has a strong legacy of ties with China, but it is also keen on having its presence in India," he added.

“There can be room for more collaboration between our two institutions, such as joint PhDs and collaborative research and studies in areas like sustainable growth, water, energy and health care, medicines and nanotechnology, among many others.”

He also suggested that an enhancement of the faculty and student exchange activity between the two universities will also be beneficial.

The other honorary doctorate recipient by the Indian university this year includes Sundeep Waslekar, president, Strategic Foresight Group, Mumbai.
Founder chancellor of SIU, S B Mujumdar, said the university's growing association with eminent experts like Prof Andersson and Waslekar is aimed at stepping up its efforts on the research front by securing more number of good teaching faculty members.

In all, 4,058 students from various courses under the seven SIU faculties received post-graduate and graduate degrees, while five students were awarded PhDs.

Prof Andersson is no stranger to receiving honorary doctorates, as earlier this year in June, he was also given an honorary doctorate by the renowned Hebrew University of Jerusalem, together with two Nobel laureates -- Professor Ada Yonath, the 2009 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry and Professor Harald zur Hausen, 2008 Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine.

The university from Israel, boasting eight Nobel prize winners among its alumni and faculty, had bestowed the NTU president a honorary Doctor of Philosophy for his research in biochemistry, most notably in photosynthesis research.

Professor Andersson, who has over 300 scientific papers published, researches on how plants cope with light and heat stress to understand how the photosynthesis process can take place under extreme conditions.  Photosynthesis research is important in advancing the concept of the artificial leaf, one of the Holy Grails of science in decades as scientists work on creating an artificial leaf that can be used as an inexpensive source of solar energy.

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