Goodenough College Alumnus Dr Arkebe Oqubay awarded Japan’s highest decoration, the Order of Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star’ by Emperor Akihito of Japan

Our warmest congratulations to College Alumnus H.E. Dr. Arkebe Oqubay, Minister, Special Advisor to the Prime Minister of Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, with a rank of Minister, who on 6 November 2018 was conferred with Japan’s highest decoration, the ‘Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star’. 


 Dr Oqubay recieved his decoration from Emperor Akihito and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe for his outstanding work in the industrialization of Ethiopia and for his role in advancing and strengthening the economic ties between the two countries.

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Dr Oqubay, a Goodenough College scholarship recipient, was resident in William Goodenough House from 2013-2014 and completed his PhD in Development Studies, specialising in Industrial Development in Africa, at SOAS, University of London. Dr Oqubay is a former mayor of Addis Ababa, and was named African Mayor of the Year in 2005.  He is a research associate at the Centre of African Studies in the University of London. His recent works include Made in Africa: Industrial Policy in Ethiopia (OUP, 2015); The Oxford Handbook of the Ethiopian Economy (OUP, 2019); China-Africa and an Economic Transformation (OUP, 2019); How Nations Learn: Technological Learning, Industrial Policy, and Catch-up (OUP, 2019); African Economic Development: Evidence, Theory, and Policy (OUP, forthcoming); and The Oxford Handbook of Industrial Hubs and Economic Development (OUP, forthcoming). He was recognized by the NewAfrican as one of the 100 Most Influential Africans of 2016 and a “leading thinker on Africa's strategic development” for his work, both theoretical and practical, on industrial policies.

The Order of the Rising Sun was established in 1875 by Emperor Meiji of Japan. The Order was the first national decoration awarded by the Japanese government and was created by decree of the Council of State. The badge features rays of sunlight from the rising sun. The design of the Rising Sun symbolizes energy as powerful as the rising sun in parallel with the "rising sun" concept of Japan.

The order is awarded to those who have made distinguished achievements in international relations, promotion of Japanese culture, advancements in their field, development in welfare or preservation of the environment. Prior to the end of World War II, it was also awarded for exemplary military service. Previously the Order of the Rising Son at Gold and Silvers Star level has been awarded to a wide range of dignitaries including current United States Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, who received his award in 2015.


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