Obituary: José Viriato Soromenho-Ramos

  • 2016•08•05     Guimarães

    It is with great sorrow that we share the news that Dr. José Viriato Soromenho-Ramos passed away on 21 July 2016.

    A key person in the establishment of the United Nations University International Institute for Software Technology (UNU-IIST) in Macau in 1991 and UNU-EGOV in Guimarães in 2014, Dr. Soromenho-Ramos was the first Chairman of the UNU-IIST Advisory Board, Financial Controller of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Assistant Treasurer of the  International Monetary Fund (IMF), and Senior Advisor of the United Nations University (UNU). In 2009, he was awarded by the President of the Portuguese Republic with the Portuguese Order of Merit.

    Dr. Soromenho-Ramos was instrumental to the establishment of the unique partnership between the Portuguese Government, the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Government of Macau Special Administrative Region (SAR) towards jointly supporting the establishment of UNU-IIST. The partnership made possible smooth development of UNU-IIST into fully-functional institute, and set it on the path towards relevance and growth on the basis of assured financial commitments, political support by three founding governments, generous hosting provisions by Macau, and high-level Advisory Board. The arrangements also assured the continuity of the institute during and beyond the transition of Macau from the Portuguese to Chinese administration in 1999.

    Dr. Soromenho-Ramos was personally engaged with the establishment of UNU-EGOV in Guimarães based upon the EGOV programme that started and developed within UNU-IIST between 2004 and 2014. His experience, connections and advice, all of which he offered generously and selflessly, were invaluable to the project. He combined passion and wisdom, cared about international projects like UNU-IIST and UNU-EGOV, and in general represented the best of the Portuguese tradition of international engagement and statesmanship in the management of international public affairs.

    On behalf of UNU-EGOV, we wish to express our most sincere condolences to the family of Dr. José Viriato Soromenho-Ramos.