Former Prime Minister, Dr Gordon Brown, has been recognised for his services to global education by The Open University (OU) at a ceremony in London. He was presented with his honorary doctorate by OU’s Chancellor Baroness Lane-Fox.
Gordon Brown was awarded the Doctor of the University for his exceptional contribution to widening access to educational opportunities globally. His continued championing of education in areas of conflict, disaster and extreme poverty has transformed the life chances of millions of people around the world.
Upon acceptance of his award Gordon Brown said:
“It is an honour to be part of The Open University’s 50th anniversary as it celebrates its two millionth student and its now global reputation as a university committed to education for all.
As one of its first tutors in the early 1970s I have followed its remarkable progress and I am delighted that The Open University has become such a treasured British institution.”
Chancellor of The Open University Baroness Lane-Fox said:
“Our world is changing rapidly. The need for education is more critical now than it has ever been. Globally, we face growing challenges from climate change, automation and mass movement of people. Education has enormous potential to help us all. Gordon’s achievements and how his work is bringing the importance of global education as a solution to many of the humanitarian crises we’re facing to the fore. It is for his tireless efforts that we’re proud to honour him with this award.”
Gordon Brown is also UN Special Envoy for Global Education and Chair of the Education Workforce Report that is due to be published on the 23 September. His wife, Sarah Brown also gave an impassioned speech at the ninth Pan-Commonwealth Forum in Edinburgh about the need for a concerted effort to meet global education needs by 2030.
The Open University’s Charter includes provision for the Senate (a governance body of the OU) to award honorary degrees of Doctor of the University (DUniv). The DUniv is awarded to people whose achievements have had an impact nationally or internationally, and who are widely recognised by others working in the field.