NOVA University Lisbon awarded the title of Doctor Honoris Causa to His Royal Highness the Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg, on 12 May, at the Rectorate, in a ceremony presided over by the President of the Portuguese Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.
The Vice-Rector of NOVA, Professor João Amaro de Matos was the Patron and requested the attribution of the title in recognition of the promotion of bilateral relations between Portugal and Luxembourg and the support of the Portuguese community in Luxembourg.
The laudation was delivered by Professor Ana Santos Pinto, Associate Dean at NOVA FCSH who highlighted the admirable and inspiring role of leadership and promotion of inclusion that the Grand Duke has exercised in his country, stating that "this capacity to welcome is the greatest value of truly liberal societies: respect for diversity and for the value of each individual, promoting tolerance and guaranteeing public and individual rights and freedoms".
In his speech, the Grand Duke highlighted the multicultural nature of the Luxembourg society, which includes a large Portuguese community, noting that “All these inhabitants, coming from all over the world, constitute an extraordinary social and cultural wealth”, and stressing that “ this "living together" should never be taken for granted; it is a continuous process, a permanent collective commitment, based on dialogue”. To conclude, he emphasized that "knowing how to communicate in several languages and being able to navigate the social codes of other societies is an enormous advantage, it is the key to a more tolerant and peaceful world", inviting students to mobilise themselves to build a more just, united and sustainable world.
The Rector of NOVA, Professor João Sàágua, praised "the remarkable role that the Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg managed to play in his country, ensuring a social harmony and a political dynamism that were vital for its national development and its international influence".