The University of Pretoria has conferred an honorary doctorate on Emeritus Professor Sijbren Cnossen, as recognition as an international authority in the field of public finance and taxation. Cnossen previously held the position of extraordinary professor at the African Tax Institute in the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences at the University of Pretoria.
‘Recognition of his expertise’
‘The Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences is really pleased to have a long-standing academic relationship with someone of Professor Cnossen’s stature,’ said Professor Margret Chitiga-Mabugu, Dean of the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences. ‘This honorary doctorate is a gesture of recognition of his expertise and a token of our appreciation for the time he has invested in the African Tax Institute over the past 20 years. His exceptional contributions to the field of public finance and tax policy are world-renowned and our staff and students have benefited immensely from his insights.
Speaking at the graduation ceremony, Professor Cnossen expressed his joy at the honour that was conferred on him. ‘I am deeply moved and humbled by the honorary degree this great university has bestowed on me so generously. I am forever indebted to Professor Riël Franzsen – I assume he initiated the process [of getting me honoured] – for his love and friendship that have sustained me throughout the two decades that I was associated with the University of Pretoria. I am also indebted to the staff and students at the African Tax Institute for offering me a most congenial environment in which to teach and publish,’ he said. Following the awarding of the doctorate, Professor Cnossen delivered a special lecture titled “Excise taxation to preserve health and to protect the environment”.
About Sijbren Cnossen
Sijbren Cnossen (86), is Emeritus Professor of Tax Law at Erasmus School of Economics and Emeritus Professor of Economics at the University of Maastricht. He is still active as Academic Partner of CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis. In the past he held appointments at the Law Schools of Harvard University, New York University and the University of Florida, the College of Europe at Bruges, and the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Studies (NIAS). He is the (co-)author of several books and numerous articles on the design and economics of taxation. Professor Cnossen is past editor of International Tax and Public Finance and De Economist. As a consultant to the IMF, World Bank, South African Treasury, OECD, EU Commission, USAID and HIID, he has advised more than 30 countries on the design and reform of their tax systems, most recently Zambia and Aruba. His latest book is titled Modernizing VATs in Africa.