The Chancellor, Lord Sainsbury of Turville, today conferred Honorary Degrees on eight distinguished individuals at a congregation in the Senate House.

Pictured: Front row l-r  Hilary Mantel, The Chancellor, The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Ada Yonath

Back row l-r Professor Joseph Stiglitz, Mario Vargas Llosa, Dr Harold Varmus, Sir John Elliott, Professor Jonathan Spence, Professor Daniel Kahneman

Honorary Degrees, the highest honours that the University can give, have a long history, dating back 500 years. One of the earliest recorded ceremonies was in 1493 when the University agreed to honour the poet John Skelton.

The traditional ceremony, with choral singing and Latin orations, took place in the Senate House. The graduands this year were:

Daniel Kahneman, Professor of Psychology and Public Affairs Emeritus, Princeton University, Nobel Laureate in Economic Science (Doctor of Science)

Joseph Stiglitz, Professor of Finance and Economics, Columbia University, Nobel Laureate in Economic Science (Doctor of Science)

Harold Varmus, Director of The National Cancer Institute, United States of America, Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine (Doctor of Science)

Ada Yonath, Director of The Helen and Milton A Kimmelman Center for Biomolecular Structure and Assembly, Weizmann Institute of Sciences, Israel, Nobel Laureate in Chemistry (Doctor of Science)

John Elliott, Regius Professor of Modern History Emeritus, University of Oxford, historian of Spain (Doctor of Letters)

Hilary Mantel, author, twice winner of the Man Booker Prize (Doctor of Letters)

Jonathan Spence, Sterling Professor of History Emeritus, Yale University, historian of China (Doctor of Letters)

Mario Vargas Llosa, author, Nobel Laureate in Literature (Doctor of Letters)

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