Newswise — The University of Haifa will award eight Doctor of Philosophy honoris causa degrees to: Frederik Willem de Klerk, Lady Irene Hatter, Dr. Ernest Strauss, Prof. Stefan Reif , Chaim Topol , Prof. Julia Kristeva, Uri Lubrani and Prof. Celso Lafer, in the course of the University's 42nd Meeting of the Board of Governors events.

Doctor of Philosophy Honoris Causa recipients Former President of the Republic of South Africa and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Mr. Frederik Willem de Klerk, who ended the apartheid policy in south Africa, will receive the degree in recognition of his vision, courage and belief in the equality of all human beings, and for his leadership and ability to go against the stream; for his actions to end the policy of racial segregation in South Africa; and for his constant pursuit of equality, pluralism and coexistence between all peoples - values entrenched in the University of Haifa's ethos.

The philanthropist and true friend of the university, Lady Irene Hatter, will receive the degree in recognition of her commitment to making education accessible to underprivileged young people; for her involvement and support of the international ORT network and the opening of numerous schools around the world; for her enduring aid to University students through scholarships and by establishing a student center that bears the Hatter name; for being among the first to recognize the importance of studying marine civilizations; and for her contribution to making the University an Israeli leader in marine research today

The philanthropist Dr. Ernest Strauss will receive the degree in recognition of his efforts to advance education and scientific learning throughout the world; for his longstanding endeavors to bring the Swiss Jewish community together; for the ability to combine business and economic vision while recognizing the importance of academic research; and for his generous contribution to the Dr. Moses Strauss Marine Geosciences Department at the University of Haifa, which stands at the forefront of scientific research in the field.

Pioneering 'Genizah' researcher, Prof. Stefan Reif will receive the degree in of his lifetime achievement on behalf of the preservation, research and accessibility of the ‘Cairo Genizah’ to the academic community and the public at-large, and for groundbreaking research that still serves as a treasure trove of information about Jewish and Israeli communities and their ways of life in the past; For his deep devotion to the University of Haifa, particularly with its Center for Interdisciplinary Research of the 'Cairo Genizah’; and for being a true friend and loyal ambassador over the years to the State of Israel, Israeli academia and the University of Haifa.

Leading theater and film actor Chaim Topol will receive the degree in recognition of his unique contribution to Israeli culture, particularly to the theater and the cinema, and for being one of the pillars of cultural activity in Israel for over 50 years; and for his unique cross-cultural activities, especially for children; and for his ongoing involvement in Israeli public life.

Philosopher, psychoanalyst, sociologist and feminist Prof. Julia Kristeva in recognition of her exceptional scholarship and academic vision that combines intellectual, social and humanistic perspectives; for the understanding that advanced science sometimes demands shattering existing; and for her social and intellectual contribution to advancing the status of women and gender equality.

The diplomat and Israel security expert Uri Lubrani will receive the degree in recognition of his long-term contribution to the security and achievements of the State of Israel; for his diplomatic activities to advance the goals of the State of Israel in the world, and primarily, his involvement in strengthening strategic connections with Iran during the era of the Shah; for striving to integrate the Druze sector into Israeli society - an undertaking of national importance that is shared by the University of Haifa; and for the central role he assumed in bringing the Jews of Ethiopia to the State of Israel.

Former Brazilian foreign minister Prof. Celso Lafer will receive the degree in recognition of his visionary political leadership that contributed to the economic and social development of Brazil, in particular, and to Latin America, as a whole; for his dual roles as statesman and academician and for the ability to leave his mark in both arenas; for understanding that science in the 21st century is global and extends beyond borders; and for his efforts to strengthen diplomatic connections between Brazil and Israel in general, and specifically, with the University of Haifa.