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Policy: Naming recognition


To outline the principles governing recognition through asset naming of exceptional contributions to the University.


This policy sets out principles governing recognition through asset naming of exceptional contributions to the work, reputation or standing of the University; for significant philanthropic gifts; or for outstanding achievement as a scholar or in the service of society. The policy also includes conditions for naming through sponsorship.


This policy applies to all proposals for recognition through naming and all University assets, whether physical or non-physical.


A gift to the University is defined (in accordance with ATO Taxation Ruling 2005/13) as a transfer of the beneficial interest in property, in which the transfer is made voluntarily and arises by way of benefaction, and from which the giver receives no material benefit or advantage. (Detailed definitions of gifts to the University and a framework for determining philanthropic income can be found in the Gifts to the University Guideline. Not to be confused with gifts to an individual staff member, which are declared through the Gift Declaration and Registration Form.)

Physical assets include, but are not limited to, buildings, roads, open spaces, and internal spaces, such as rooms, lecture theatres and labs.

Non-physical assets include, but are not limited to, academic entities, academic programs, Committee chairs, professorships, sub-professorial academic positions, lectures, exhibitions, scholarships, bursaries, prizes and awards.

Sponsorship refers to a non-philanthropic arrangement that benefits both the University and the sponsor, typically a corporation or foundation. It is a contribution in money or kind with expectation of material benefit to the sponsor, such as naming rights, promotion or public recognition.

Policy statement

  1. Recognition through naming is conferred:
  1. in alignment with the legislation, policy and strategic aims of the University;
  2. on the basis that it does not compromise the values, integrity, autonomy or reputation of the University; and
  3. following a transparent and rigorous process, as outlined under the procedure.
  1. Naming of assets in recognition of philanthropy:
  1. acknowledges both significant individual gifts and gifts made to the University over time that have made a major impact on the institution;
  2. is conferred:
  • in recognition of eligible gifts accepted by the University in line with the ANU Gifts and Fundraising Policy and Gift Acceptance Procedure.
  • when gifts meet or exceed minimum thresholds set by the University;
  • at a level and for a duration commensurate with the contribution; and
  • on receipt of the gift(s); and
  1. does not confer any material benefit to the donor, nor special privileges, control or responsibility for the asset named.
  1. Naming of assets in recognition of outstanding achievement or contribution to the University or to society:
  1. is sensitive to the history and character of the University, and reflects the diversity of the ANU community, our commitment to equity, and our responsibility to Indigenous Australia;
  2. is conferred:
  • at a level commensurate with the achievement or contribution;
  • by preference only to deceased honourees (though in rare or exceptional cases the University may recognise a living honouree to balance naming); and
  • is considered only when the strategic or cultural benefit to ANU is greater than the potential funding opportunity; and
  1. is not conferred in recognition of current students or members of staff.
  1. Recognition through use of a name does not include:
  1. titles or post-nominals;
  2. corporate logos; or
  3. the name of a corporate entity, where an identifiable and relevant family name could be used in its place.
  1. Naming of assets under the terms of a sponsorship is conferred:
  1. with reference to the minimum thresholds set by the University; and
  2. at a level and for a duration commensurate with the terms of the sponsorship agreement.


Printable version (PDF)
Title Naming recognition (under review)
Document Type Policy
Document Number ANUP_000379
Purpose To outline the principles governing recognition of exceptional contribution to the University through asset naming.
Audience Alumni, Staff, Affiliates
Category Governance
Topic/ SubTopic Community & Development - Donations
Effective Date 6 Oct 2023
Next Review Date 5 Oct 2028
Responsible Officer: Vice-President, ANU Advancement
Approved By: ANU Council
Contact Area ANU Advancement
Delegations 268

Information generated and received by ANU staff in the course of conducting business on behalf of ANU is a record and should be captured by an authorised recordkeeping system. To learn more about University records and recordkeeping practice at ANU, see ANU recordkeeping and Policy: Records and archives management.