Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content

Tanoto Foundation Professorships


The Tanoto Foundation, set up by Mr Sukanto Tanoto and Mrs Tinah B. Tanoto in 2001, is a philanthropic organisation that strives to be a centre of excellence in poverty alleviation through education, empowerment and enhancement of quality of lives. Tanoto Foundation’s mission is to work with communities and partners to address root causes of poverty in countries where the Tanoto family has significant presence. As an accomplished self-made entrepreneur, visionary and pioneer of a number of industries in Indonesia, Mr Sukanto’s success in growing his business empire is widely recognised.

In 2012, he was awarded the Wharton School Dean’s Medal Award, which recognises individuals for their contributions to the enlargement of the global economy and to the improvement of lives worldwide. His achievements have been nothing short of decades of hard work. Despite having to leave school at the age of 17 to support his family, his relentless hunger for knowledge drives him to continue learning through various means, including taking up courses in renowned universities around the world till today. Mr Sukanto strongly believes that education is a key to escaping the vicious cycle of intergenerational poverty and the grips of its effects. To date, the Tanoto Foundation has provided over 20,000 scholarships, built several schools and education facilities that produced 27,000 graduates, developed 60,000 hectares of Community Livelihood Plantations and created more than 1,800 jobs in local communities through Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (SME) programmes.

In 2009, the Tanoto Foundation made its first donation of S$5 million to Duke-NUS to establish a Professorship and Research Initiative in Diabetes. In 2013 and 2014, the Tanoto Foundation gave another S$3 million each to support the Professorship in Medical Oncology and Research Initiative in Asian Lymphoma, as well as the Professorship in Cardiovascular Medicine and Research Initiative in Genetics & Stem Cell, bringing a total of S$11 million in donations. These donations have enabled the advancement of research and medicine in Asia to identify new ways of diagnosing patients, thereby allowing early prevention, more accurate diagnosis and better treatment for patients.

Click below to read about the current awardees of these Distinguished Professorships.

Tanoto Foundation Professorship in Cardiovascular Medicine

Tanoto Foundation Professorship in Medical Oncology

Tanoto Foundation Professorship in Diabetes Research