Emeritus Professor Gajaraj Dhanarajan (“Raj”) is a Malaysian national and holds BSc and MSc degrees from the University of Madras, a Diploma of the Imperial College (DIC) and an MSc from the Imperial College of the University of London and a PhD in biology from the University of Aston in Birmingham, UK. His career, stretching over 45 years, has seen him helming two universities in Hong Kong and Malaysia.
From 1995 to 2004, he was president of the Commonwealth of Learning, an inter-governmental agency. He is acknowledged as one of the world’s leading advocates and experts on open and distance learning, for which he has served as a consultant for the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the African Development Bank and the Inter-American and Caribbean Development Banks.
Among the international development agencies that he has worked with are UNESCO, UNICEF, ILO, WHO, UNHCR, ITU and the International Federation of Red Cross Associations. Other development agencies that have used his experience include CIDA, DFID, AusAID and NZODA. The government of Malaysia conferred on him the nation’s second highest civilian honour in 2008, which carries the title of Tan Sri. In October 2013 he was awarded the Prize for Lifelong Contribution to Open Education by the International Council for Distance Education.
He holds honorary doctorates from ten universities in the Asia-Pacific region, Europe and North America.