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Sir Jack Zunz awarded honorary doctorate

UK Press Team
10 December 2015

Sir Jack Zunz has been presented with an Honorary Doctorate of Science in Engineering Honoris Causa, from his alma mater, the University of the Witwatersrand’s Faculty of Engineering.

This is in recognition of Sir Jack’s vast contribution to engineering and the built environment, as well as his philanthropic initiatives, implemented through the Ove Arup Foundation.

Sir Jack was a trailblazer in providing elegant ‘total design’ engineering solutions and he is perhaps best known for leading the team that solved the engineering challenges on the Sydney Opera House’s now iconic roof structure, Sir Jack graduated in Civil Engineering from the University of the Witwatersrand in 1948.

He left for London to join Ove Arup in 1950, returning to South Africa in 1954 to establish the South African office of Ove Arup. In 1961, Sir Jack was made an Associate Partner at Ove Arup, becoming a Senior Partner in the London office in 1965. Jack Zunz became Chairman of the Ove Arup group from 1977 to 1984 and later Co-chairman of the firm globally from 1984 to 1989.

Sir Jack, now 91, recorded his address for the graduation audience from his home in London. James Oppenheim - recently retired and a long-standing colleague of Sir Jack and director of Arup - accepted Sir Jack’s Honorary Doctorate Scroll on his behalf.

In recognition of his achievements Sir Jack was Knighted (Knight Bachelor) in 1989. Sir Jack received many other prestigious awards including the Institution of Structural Engineers Gold Medal (1988), Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering (1983) and Honorary Member of the Architectural Association (2011).

Read Sir Jack Zunz's full citation (.PDF, 159KB)