In developing this policy the University had regard to the provisions of section 40B(1)(b) of the Human Rights Act 2004 (ACT).
Naming Rights Policy
The purpose of this policy is to describe the circumstances under which University buildings, facilities, academic entities and academic positions may be named after an individual, an organisation or a business:
where an individual, organisation or business has provided a substantial financial contribution to the University; or
where an individual, organisation or business has provided distinguished service to the community and/or the University and is considered worthy of recognition through honorary naming.
This policy applies to the naming of the University’s facilities, academic entities and academic positions, including (but not limited to):
buildings, or parts thereof;
facilities, including lecture theatres, laboratories, classrooms, collections, equipment and outdoor areas;
academic entities, such as faculties, schools, disciplines and units within a course; and
academic positions, normally Chairs but may also include other significant academic appointments.
The naming of a building, facility, academic entity or academic position to acknowledge an individual, organisation or business is one of the highest recognitions that the University can bestow.
All naming recognition must be consistent with University Strategy and proposed naming should enhance the public reputation of the University and the benefactor.
The credentials, character and reputation of proposed benefactors for whom the naming of a position or facility is proposed, will be carefully considered before an offer of naming rights is made.
Gender balance in the allocation of naming rights will also be a consideration during the evaluation process.
In the case of recognition of substantial benefaction, approval for the naming of whole buildings and significant academic entities (such as Faculties and Schools) rests with the University Council.
In the case of recognition of distinguished service to the University and/or Community (honorary naming), approval rests with the University Council.
In the case of recognition of other benefaction, such as approval for naming University facilities (lecture theatres, gardens, collections etc), and academic positions rests jointly with the Chancellor and Vice-Chancellor in accordance with this policy. Decisions shall be reported to the next meeting of Council.
Decisions to approve naming rights should take into account a number of factors, such as:
the size of the contribution relative to the value and cost of the Building, Facility, Academic Position/Entity being named;
the compatibility of the proposed name with the function of the Building, Facility, Academic Position/Entity;
community, cultural and ethnic sensitivities. Where necessary, input should be sought from relevant University and community representatives;
any potential risk to the reputation of the University from aligning the University with the name of an individual or company whose reputation may vary over the term of the naming agreement. This risk should be minimised by the formalising of an agreement with a termination clause for the University in the event of a reputational issue arising.
The University Council reserves the right to cancel the named entity and to re-name it, at any time, subject to any written agreement entered into with a sponsor.
Naming of Academic Positions
A Chair or other significant academic positions may be named after a sponsor:
If it is fully endowed, i.e. if a large contribution is provided to the University for perpetual investment, the interest from which will be sufficient to cover the salary and on-costs of the position in perpetuity; or
if the salary and on-costs of the Chair (or significant academic position) will be met for at least 3 years, with naming granted for the same period of time.
Where a sponsor makes a substantial contribution to the salary and other costs of a Chair or academic position, the sponsor (or a representative of the sponsor) may be invited to suggest selection criteria for the position and may be invited to have a nominee on the selection committee. The University however, retains the ultimate authority in designing criteria for the selection of staff and for deciding whom to appoint to the position.
Naming of Academic Entities
Proposals to create a new academic entity (such as a Research Centre or School) or to name an existing academic entity must be endorsed by Academic Board to Council.
An academic entity may be named after a sponsor:
If it is fully endowed for a sum sufficient to make a significant and lasting difference to the operation of that academic entity.
If a minimum of 50% of the costs of the activities of the entity will be met for at least 5 years, with naming granted for the same period of time.
Academic structures change regularly, and any agreement with a benefactor must anticipate such change.
Naming of Buildings and Facilities
A Building may be named after a sponsor if the sponsor provides a contribution of at least 50% of the total capital cost of the Building or a minimum of $3 million dollars (the final amount to be determined depending on the building offered).
Proposals may be considered for naming parts of buildings or outdoor areas on receiving assurance of endowments or continuing funds, at an appropriate level, from individuals or corporations. The minimum donation will be $20,000 per annum.
When planning a fundraising campaign, the Vice-Chancellor and Chancellor can approve a range of spaces and set levels of sponsorship at the commencement of the campaign, in advance of any discussions with potential sponsors.
The naming of a Building or Facility must have a specified term for recognition of that name. Naming rights sponsorship of a Building or Facility will usually be approved for a 5 year period however, the University has discretion to vary the term depending on the size of the contribution and the ongoing relationship with the sponsor.
Buildings and Facilities that are named in honour of outstanding individuals with no financial consideration may be named for the life of the building.
The decision to honour distinguished service to the University and/or Community is entirely at the discretion of the University Council.
Normally, the University acknowledges an individual’s exceptional service to the institution, community or industry through the conferral of an honorary academic title.
In rare and outstanding cases, the University may name a physical structure (building, facility) or academic position/entity in honour of an individual who has rendered extraordinary and outstanding service. Consideration of such an honour will not normally occur until at least two years has elapsed following the person’s involvement with the University.
The University will not normally name a Building or part of a Building after a member of staff or former member of staff. Recognition in such cases is generally conveyed in other ways including the conferral of the title of Professor Emeritus (in the case of a distinguished, retired Professor).
Authority to Use Name
The University will respect requests for confidentiality and anonymity from donors and sponsors.
Sponsorships and Donations
Sponsorships and donations are treated differently by the Australian Tax Office and should be recognised and treated differently within the University.
Donations: Donors’ contributions can be tax deductible as a gift where no material benefits are given to the donor apart from public acknowledgement through the naming of a Building, Facility, Academic Entity or Academic Position. The intentions of the Donor and University will be documented in a Gift Agreement, signed by both parties.
Sponsorships: Where a set of specific benefits is offered in return for a contribution, the arrangement is a sponsorship, which attracts GST and is not legally a tax-deductible gift. All Sponsorships must be formalised with a written agreement identifying the financial arrangements and benefits, the term of the agreement and the agreed naming of the Building, Facility, Academic Entity or Academic Position.
Responsibilities for implementing this policy are set out in the Procedures for Assigning Naming Rights.
The University of Canberra Act 1989 (ACT) vests the governance and management of the University to the University Council.
Procedures and/or guidelines supporting this policy:
The name assigned to a University facility, academic entity or academic position.
Includes (but is not limited to) buildings, centres, schools, institutes, streets, paths, outdoor areas, gardens, wetlands, collections, halls, houses, residences or parts thereof.
Where a set of specific benefits is offered in return for a contribution, the arrangement is a sponsorship, which attracts GST and is not legally a tax-deductible gift. All Sponsorships must be formalised with a written agreement identifying the financial arrangements and benefits, the term of the agreement and the naming of the Building, Facility, Academic Entity or Academic Position.
Donors’ contributions can be tax deductible as a gift where no material benefits are given to the donor apart from public acknowledgement through the naming of a Building, Facility, Academic Entity or Academic Position.