Figures from the worlds of religion, law, science, art and medicine to be honoured by the University of Glasgow

Published: 27 June 2007

Glasgow University will award eight honorary degrees during this year's summer graduation ceremonies

The University of Glasgow will award eight honorary degrees during this year?s summer graduation ceremonies. The list of graduands, their achievements and the date when they will receive their degree are as follows:

The Reverend Professor Keith Ward (DD) - Thu 28 June, 4pm
A leading figure in inter-faith relations, Keith Ward is an internationally important theologian and philosopher of religion. Gresham Professor of Divinity at Gresham College, London, his work focuses on the interface between philosophy and religion, the relationship between science and religion and the dialogue between religious traditions. He is a member of the International Board of the Global Ethics and Religion Forum, the Governing Council of the Royal Institute of Philosophy and the Oxford Centre for Vaishnava and Hindu Studies. Professor Ward has also been a regular participant in the Pontifical Academy of Sciences consultations at the Vatican and elsewhere and was joint President of the World Congress of Faiths (WCF) for nine years.

Hon Sir Nicolas Bratza (LLD) - Fri 29 June, 11am
As Judge at the European Commission of Human Rights, Nicolas Bratza has dedicated himself to helping establish a new European legal system built upon the rule of law and respect for human rights. A member of the European Commission of Human Rights from 1993-1999, he has also served as President of one of the Court?s Sections since 1998. He received a knighthood in 1998.

Emeritus Professor Derick Thomson (DLitt) - Fri 29 June, 4pm
More widely known as Ruaraidh MacThomais, his Gaelic name under which he writes his poetry, Professor Derick Thomson is one of the most prolific and influential Scottish Gaelic poets of the past century. He has consistently pushed forward the boundaries of Gaelic poetry and for sixty years his poetry has celebrated and challenged Scottish and Gaelic society. Founder of the quarterly ?Gairm? which has showcased new Gaelic writing for 50 years and founder of Gairm publications, Professor Thomson is widely acclaimed as the father of modern Gaelic publishing.

Professor John M Preston (DVMS) - Sat 30 June, 11am
A veterinary graduate of Glasgow University, John Preston is Former President of the AgVet Division of Merck & Co Inc. in New York and senior member of the Merck Management Committee. He is one of the most powerful businessmen in animal health worldwide. After leading the establishment of Merial Limited, Professor Preston retired in 2000 but is still active in the sector, serving on the board of several companies and acting as a government advisor.

Professor Peter Hagoort (DSc) - Tues 3 July, 4pm
Peter Hagoort is Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at the Radboud University Nijmegen and Director of the National F.C. Donder Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging. His research group Neurocognition of Language researches the way complex language skills such as reading, listening and speaking are fixed in the human brain. For his scientific work Professor Hagoort received the Hendrik Muller Prize of the Dutch Academy for Art and Sciences (KNAW) in 2002. In 2004 he was appointed Companion of the Order of the Dutch Lion and in the same year elected member of the KNAW. In 2005 he was awarded the prestigious Spinoza prize for his excellent research and outstanding performance in building up the F.C. Donders Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging.

Emeritus Professor Sir Roddy MacSween (DSc) - Wed 4 July, 11am
Professor Sir Roddy MacSween is internationally respected as a teacher, author and researcher in pathology, with specialist interest in diseases of the liver. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in Edinburgh and England and Honorory Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in London. He has also held the position of President of the Royal College of Pathologists and Chairman of the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges. Since retirement Professor MacSween is now involved with charitable work as Chairman of the Medical Advisory Committee of the Children?s Liver Foundation, Chairman of Tenovus Scotland and a Committee Member of the British Lung Foundation (Scotland). He was knighted in June 2000.

Professor Dame Carol Black (DSc) - Wed 4 July, 11am
Professor Dame Carol Black is currently Professor of Rheumatology at the Royal Free and University College Medical School and Former President of the Royal College of Physicians. With a special interest in connective tissue disease, she runs the major clinical and basic research centre in Europe for systematic sclerosis and related disorders. She is currently a member of the NHS University Advisory Board, a member of the Council of the Academy of Medical Sciences, a member of the Modernisation Board and a Governor of the Health Foundation. She was awarded a CBE in 2002 and a DBE for her services to medicine in 2005.

Kate Richardson (

Photographers and journalists are invited to the graduation cermonies. If you wish to attend, or for further information please contact Kate Richardson in the University of Glasgow?s Media Relations Office on 0141 330 3683 or email

First published: 27 June 2007

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