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Professor Tunji Olaopa, 59, the Executive Vice-Chairman, Ibadan School of Government and Public Policy – iSGPP, Bodija and Professor of Public Administration, Lead City University, Ibadan, was born in Awe, Afijio LGA of Oyo State. A University of Ibadan trained political scientist, Olaopa holds a doctorate degree in public administration. He joined the Federal civil service in 1988 as Speech Writer and Chief Researcher in the Office of the President, Aso Villa, Abuja.
As a career bureaucrat, Olaopa served the Federal Government in various capacities including being Coordinator, Education Sector Analysis and Head, Policy Division in the Federal Ministry of Education and Deputy Director/Head, Technical Secretariat, Reform Strategy Team of The Presidency. He was pioneer Director of Programmes of the the Bureau of Public Service Reforms (BPSR) and served in that capacity from 2003 until 2010 when he was appointed Permanent Secretary. During the period he served on the African expert team that developed the continental reform strategy.
He served as Permanent Secretary in 5 ministries namely, the Career Management Office; the State House; Labour and Productivity; Youth Development; and Communication Technology, during which time he contributed to fashioning of key institutional frameworks such as the facilitation of the National Productivity Model, the National Youth Development Strategy in 2013, the conception of the Bureau of Public Service Reforms (BPSR), among others. A seasoned researcher, trainer and prolific writer, Professor Olaopa has authored a dozen (12) major books, thirty (30) monographs, one co-authored book, 20 articles in peer-reviewed journals and several essays, chapters and articles in conference proceedings.
Prof. Olaopa is a recipient of many honours and awards including the 2012 Dr. Kwame Nkrumah African Distinguished Public Service Order of Merit Award; the 2015 National Productivity Order of Merit (NPOM) Award; Senior Fellowship of the Nigerian Leadership Initiative (NLI)/Yale University Fellowship in 2015; Honorary Doctor of Science (D.Sc) of Lead City University in Public Administration in 2015; Award of Excellence of the Nigeria’s Institute of Physics and the
Nigerian Historical Society in 2016; Fellow, Institute of Management Consultants of Nigeria in 2016; University of Texas at Austin’s Thabo Mbeki Award for Distinguished Public Service and Scholarship in 2018, University of Ibadan 70th Anniversary Lifetime Achievement Award in 2018, among others.
Prof. Olaopa is married to Funlola and they are blessed with three children and one grandson.