Hakobyan was born in Lernadzor village in Armenia's southern province of Syunik. In 1940 he graduated from the Faculty of Geography-Geology of the Yerevan State University (YSU). He was the dean of the YSU's Faculty of Geography in 1955-57 and 1963-65. He thereafter served as the chair of that department between 1962 and 1986. Most of his work was focused on the historical geography of Armenia. He also authored several textbooks.