Onofre Corpuz

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National Scientist

Onofre Corpuz
Onofre Corpuz.jpg
Minister of Education, Culture & Sports
In office
July 1979 – January 1984
PresidentFerdinand Marcos
Preceded byJuan Manuel
Succeeded byJaime Laya
Secretary of Education
In office
December 16, 1967 – April 20, 1971
PresidentFerdinand Marcos
Preceded byCarlos P. Romulo
Succeeded byJuan Manuel
13th President of the University of the Philippines
In office
PresidentFerdinand Marcos
Preceded bySalvador P. Lopez
Succeeded byEmanuel V. Soriano
1st Chairperson of the Career Executive Service Board
In office
PresidentFerdinand Marcos
Preceded byNone
Succeeded byJacobo C. Clave
Personal details
Onofre Dizon Corpuz

(1926-12-01)December 1, 1926
Camiling, Tarlac, Philippines[1]
DiedMarch 23, 2013(2013-03-23) (aged 86)[2]
NationalityFilipino Philippines
Spouse(s)Dr. Aurora Corpuz
Alma materUniversity of the Philippines Diliman (B.A., 1950)
University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign (M.A., 1953)
Harvard University (M.P.A, 1955; Ph.D., 1956)
OccupationProfessor, Public servant
ProfessionEconomic historian, Political scientist
AwardsNational Scientist of the Philippines

Onofre Dizon Corpuz ONS (December 1, 1926 – March 23, 2013[2]) was a Filipino academic, economist, and historian. He served as the Secretary of Education of the Philippines from 1968 to 1971 and was the 13th president of the University of the Philippines System from 1975 to 1979. Dr. Corpuz was later named Minister of Education under the parliamentary system wherein he was also member of the now defunct Batasang Pambansa (National Assembly) from 1979 to 1983.

Being the first one to come up with the idea of establishing the Career Executive Service (CES) in the Philippines based on existent bureaucratic structures in other countries, Corpuz served as the first chairman of the Career Executive Service Board (CESB) from 1973 to 1978.[3]

In 2004, he was named National Scientist of the Philippines for his contributions to Filipino scholarship particularly in areas of economics, history, political science, and public administration.[4] At the time of his death, he was a Professor Emeritus at the School of Economics of the University of the Philippines Diliman.

Early life[edit]

Dr. Onofre Dizon Corpuz was born on December 1, 1926 at Taft Street, Poblacion, Camiling, Tarlac to Remigio Corpuz, a school teacher and Isabel Dizon.[1]

He finished his primary and secondary education in his hometown province of Tarlac, Philippines. He was salutatorian of Camiling Elementary School in 1938 and of Tarlac High School in 1944 before he took up his B.A. degree at the University of the Philippines at Diliman from 1946 to 1950 wherein he graduated magna cum laude. He joined the Upsilon Sigma Phi fraternity in 1947. It was also here that he joined and later served as the resident Governor of the Pan Xenia Fraternity.

Corpuz obtained his master's degree at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign in the United States in 1953. He later finished a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree in 1955 and a Ph.D. in Political Economy & Government in 1956 from Harvard University.

In 1976, the Royal Chulalongkorn University in Thailand awarded him a Ph.D., honoris causa in 1976.


Dr. Corpuz was appointed Undersecretary of the Department of Education by former President Ferdinand E. Marcos in 1966 and was promoted to Secretary in 1968. As head of the country's education department, he joined the Southeast Asia Ministers of Education Council. He was also concurrently chairperson of the Population Commission.[5]

In 1972, he became the Founding President of the government-owned Development Academy of the Philippines. Corpuz later ran for a position and won in the Batasang Pambansa, the legislative body of the parliamentary Philippines during the Marcos era. As a member of the legislature, he served as Minister of Education. He took a break from government service in 1983.

The economist reentered government as member of the board of the National Historical Institute in 1987 during the time of former President Corazon C. Aquino.

Professor Corpuz served as president of the now defunct The Manila Chronicle from 1994 to 1996. Earlier, he was part of the Board of Governors of the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii from 1974 to 1976. East-West Center is closely linked to several academic institutions in Hawaii, particularly the University of Hawaii.


Dr. Corpuz conducted research at the United States Library of Congress, the Widener & Houghton Libraries at Harvard University, the New York Public Library, the British Museum Library, and the Archivo General delas Indias in Sevilla, Spain. He was also a visiting research associate at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.

His specializations included economic history, public administration and policy. His previous research formed the basis for his best-known published works, which include: The Philippines (1965; Prentice-Hall); Roots of the Filipino Nation 2 vols. (1989; Aklahi Foundation); An economic history of the Philippines (1997; University of the Philippines Press); and Saga and triumph: the Philippine revolution against Spain (2002; University of the Philippines Press).

Personal life[edit]

Professor Corpuz was married to retired professor and former dean of the College of Home Economics (CHE) of University of the Philippines Dr. Aurora G. Corpuz.


  1. ^ a b "Birth certificate of Onofre Copruz". Philippines Civil Registration (Local). Retrieved 21 January 2015.
  2. ^ a b "Former Education Secretary O.D. Copruz dies". Manilatimes.net. Archived from the original on 21 April 2013. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  3. ^ "Career Executive Service Board Chaipersons". Career Executive Service Board. Retrieved 25 March 2013.[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ "National Academy of Science and Technology". Department of Science and Technology. Retrieved 25 March 2013.[permanent dead link]
  5. ^ "UP Diliman School of Economics". University of the Philippines Diliman website. Retrieved 25 March 2013.

External links[edit]

Academic offices
Preceded by
Salvador P. Lopez
President of the University of the Philippines
Succeeded by
Emanuel V. Soriano