Tata Group Chairman Emeritus Ratan Tata has been awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Manchester for his contribution to innovation and philanthropy.
The UK university said the award was presented to the 82-year-old industrialist in Mumbai recently during the India tour of President and Vice Chancellor Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell.
“Ratan is inspirational. For him, philanthropy and innovation are spokes of the same wheel, each leading towards the improvement of lives which is the very same ethos we share at the University of Manchester,” Rothwell said.
“He is an example to big business, small enterprise, to researchers and developers, those who give and those who can give more. We believe that he will be an example to our students as they grow to become global citizens,” she said.
The university’s citation notes that under Tata’s leadership, from 1991 to 2012, the group became a global name and one of the largest conglomerates in the world, with the acquisition of major international brands such as Tetley, Daewoo, Corus, Jaguar and Land Rover.
“Ratan has equally made a deep impact in philanthropy through the Tata Trusts, which he chairs. Under his guidance, the different Trusts, set up over time by Tata family members since 1892, have come together as a unified operating entity to target their talent and resources to pursue important causes that are good for India.
“Some of the most important causes Ratan has championed are nutrition, sanitation, cancer care, rural poverty alleviation, and social entrepreneurship,” notes the citation.
The varsity said that the honorary doctorate recognised his sense of social responsibility and philanthropy.
“Social Responsibility is one of Manchester’s three core strategic goals sitting equally alongside our commitments to world-class research, and outstanding learning and student experience,” it said.