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Renowned economist receives honorary degree from Northumbria

7th December 2016

Respected South East Asian economist Dr W.A. Wijewardena has been awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Civil Law by Northumbria University, Newcastle.

Dr Wijewardena is currently President of the Business Management School (BMS) in Colombo, Sri Lanka. His career at the Central Bank of Sri Lanka lasted 37 years culminating in nine years as the Deputy Governor, responsible for economic research, monetary policy, financial system stability, public debt, rural credit and banking.

Simultaneously, he was the Chairman of both the Institute of Bankers of Sri Lanka and the Sri Lanka Accounting and Auditing Standards Monitoring Board. 

He retired from his Central Bank role in 2009 to focus on his academic interests.  He became President of BMS in 2010 and also undertook visiting posts at several other institutions, including the Asian Institute of Technology, the University of Sri Jayewardenepura and Naresuan University. 

He has also acted as Council Member of the University of Colombo, the leading university in Sri Lanka.  He is the author of a number of books explaining complex economic issues to a general audience, including Capital Markets in Sri Lanka: Problems and Prospects and Economic Wisdom.

Dr Wijewardena said: “Hard work is the best friend whom one could have. It not only leads to excellence but also makes one different from others. There is no easy way or shortcut to success. Success is attained only through a journey which one undertakes with patience, dedication and resolution.”

BMS is a longstanding partner of Northumbria University.  The relationship has produced over 1,000 graduates, including full-time students studying in the UK and distance learning students studying in Sri Lanka and the Maldives.  It has led to Northumbria being the largest provider of undergraduate distance learning management education in Sri Lanka.

Dr Wijewardena received his honorary degree alongside students graduating from Northumbria’s Business and Law programmes.

The recipients of honorary degrees are nominated by the University’s staff for their achievements, their links to the University – and for their sheer inspirational qualities. Professor Dame Ann Dowling is also receiving an honorary degree from Northumbria University this month.

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