Policy 100 - Naming of University Assets

Approved Board of Governors 2010.5

NAMING OF UNIVERSITY ASSETS

PREAMBLE

1. It is a long and well-established University of Ottawa tradition to name existing and proposed tangible and non-tangible assets after the names of founders, benefactors, members of staff and others who have made exceptional contributions to the University and its mission, or to the broader local, national or international community.

2. Naming also provides meaningful opportunities to recognize outstanding contributions by those who serve as an inspiration for future generations of students, graduates and members of the University of Ottawa community. Further, the University’s association with such extraordinary individuals strengthens the institution and its sense of heritage and connection to the local community.

3. The process and standards governing decisions on naming assets, as defined in Section 6, must be clearly established and transparent for several reasons:

a) The selection of individuals for such recognition reflects how the University perceives itself, its mission and its values;

b) The number of University assets available for naming is limited while the number of people who could be honoured this way is much higher. Therefore, each naming decision must be weighed very carefully;

c) Names are usually attached to a particular asset in perpetuity or for the life of the asset; and the tribute paid by the University to its staff, benefactors and other deserving people must be consistent.

PURPOSE AND APPLICATION

4. This Policy has been adopted to ensure that the process and standards that govern the naming of assets are articulated consistently and are understood clearly by everyone, and to make sure the process and standards are adhered to by all those involved.

5. As of the date of its approval by the Board of Governors, this Policy will be referenced in and deemedto be part of any naming proposals or other relevant documents.

6. This Policy applies to the naming of all assets, tangible and non-tangible, owned by the University including, but not limited to, the following assets:

Tangible assets:

a) land, buildings or building components (for example, a wing, lecture and seminar room, laboratory, reading room, atrium, foyer)

Non-tangible assets:

a) academicunits (for example, a faculty, department, school, institute, centre)

b) academic programs

c) academic positions (for example, chair, fellowship, professorship)

d) athletic programs

Other naming opportunities

7. The approval process required for naming proposals that do not involve a University asset, including those referred to below, will be determined by the Vice-President, External Relations, or that person’s delegate, in consultation with the appropriate senior administrators.

Naming opportunities that do not involve a University asset include:

a) collections of books, archives, art and other documentary and/or cultural materials;

b) equipment;

c) events, both academic (for example, lectures, symposia, conferences) and non-academic (for example, athletic and other extracurricular events).

No application

8. This Policy does not apply to the following:

a) Endowments and student awards are dealt with under Policy 112. Any naming opportunities associated with endowments and student awards are addressed by the Development Office through the terms of reference approval procedure.

b) Sponsorship opportunities and agreements, which are subject to the University of Ottawa’s sponsorship policy.

NAMING STANDARDS

General

9. The naming of University of Ottawa assets must adhere to the following standards:

a) Each naming must contribute to the University’s objects and purposes under the University of Ottawa Act and to the University’s mission and priorities, while preserving its integrity and academic freedom;

b) Naming of academic units and programs must not prevent the University from altering its academic and research priorities;

c) Individuals must be of sound reputation;

d) Naming of tangible assets to recognize a corporation, foundation or other similar entity will be for a set and limited period of time;

e) No corporate names, logos, symbols or word marks may be featured on the exterior of any building that houses an academic unit; and

f) No commitment, oral or written, may be made by a member of the University community to any person for the naming of any asset without the prior written approval of the Administrative Committee.

Naming in honour of individual where no gift is involved

10. Naming to honour an individual where no gift is involved must adhere to the following standards:

a) No commitment for naming will be made without prior approval of the Administrative Committee.

b) A proposed honouree must have achieved distinction in one or more of the following ways:

i)   While serving the University in an academic capacity, the individual demonstrated high scholarly distinction and earned an excellent national or international reputation.

ii)  While serving the University in an important administrative capacity, the individual rendered distinguished service that warrants recognition of the exceptional contributions this individual made to the welfare of the University.

iii) The individual contributed in a truly exceptional way to the welfare of the institution or has achieved a unique distinction that warrants recognition.

c) A naming proposal may be made to honour an individual upon:

i) two years from the date of retirement, the date of other separation from the University, the end of a term of elected or appointed office or the date of the person’s death if the person was still an active member of the University community at the time of death.

d) Proposals for naming of University assets to honour current members of the University community will be considered only in exceptional circumstances. 

Buildings

11. Naming of a building or other asset such as a new or newly renovated facility will not take effect until the University has received a minimum of 51% of a private sector contribution or 51% of the capital cost, as the case may be.

In exceptional circumstances, the naming can take effect before the minimum stated above has been received by the University. All such exceptions must be approved by the Administrative Committee.

Renaming

12. When a proposal is made to rename an asset or add another name, a naming proposal must be prepared in accordance with the process set out in sections 17 and 18, and must contain the information indicated in sections 15 and 16. In addition, the following guidelines apply:

a) Any proposal to rename or to add another name in recognition of a gift will be reviewed by Legal Services. All gift documents related to the original gift and related naming, as well as gift documents related to the subsequent gift and proposed renaming will be reviewed.

b) When a building or building component named in recognition of a gift or an individual has reached the end of its useful life and will be replaced or substantially renovated, the replaced or renovated structure may be renamed in recognition of another gift.

c) When an asset is named in recognition of a gift or in honour of an individual, but the asset then ceases to exist or will be developed for another use, appropriate recognition of earlier donors and honourees will be considered.

d) When a proposal is made to rename an asset, University representatives will make all reasonable efforts to provide advance notice to the original donors or honourees and their immediate family members.

Plaques and signs

13. Plaques and other signs recognizing a naming will be generally of a uniform design and contain the name of the honouree and the date of dedication or, as appropriate, the date on which a substantial portion of the project was completed. All plaques and signs are subject to University of Ottawa policies and guidelines for signage.

Revocation

14. The University reserves the right to revoke a naming at its sole discretion where, in the opinion of the Board of Governors, it would be in the best interest of the University to revoke the naming. Requests to revoke a naming must be sent to the Administrative Committee for consideration and will then be referred to the Board of Governors for a decision.

CONTENTS OF NAMING PROPOSAL

15. Naming proposals must be in writing and contain the following information:

a) A description of the naming opportunity being proposed;

b) A description of the eminence the person has achieved, and the reputation and integrity of the individual or entity whose name is being proposed;

c) The proposed duration of the naming;

d) The implications of the particular naming proposal on other naming opportunities associated with the asset, and if applicable, on an academic unit, in the context of the mission and priorities of the University;

e) A provision for the future renaming of the asset, especially where the asset may eventually be replaced or substantially altered in its form, nature or use;

f) The level of support for the proposal within the Faculty or Service (with letters from faculty members) if relevant;

g) An explanation of the appropriate timing in the case of naming to recognize a retired or deceased individual;

h) The relationship of the individual or entity to the University; and

i) Any concerns with the naming and any potential short- or long-term implications of the naming on the Faculty, Service or the University.

16. Naming proposals associated with benefactors must contain the following additional information:

a) The nature of the gift and the expected impact it will have;

b) The dollar amount of the gift and the proposed disbursement schedule;

c) The impact on the University’s or Faculty’s strategic priorities, the relevance and the sustainability of the gift when the naming is being proposed for a new unit or program;

d) The duration of the naming when a corporation, foundation or other similar entity is being recognized; and

e) Provisions for dealing with a gift not received in accordance with the agreed terms.

NAMING PROPOSAL PROCESS

17. A member of the University of Ottawa community must forward a proposal for naming in writing to the President, a Vice-President, a Dean or the University Librarian.

18. A naming proposal for an asset will be considered as follows:

Step One (preliminary consideration)

a) The President, Vice-President, Dean or University Librarian, as the case may be, will evaluate the naming proposal and, if the proposal is deemed worthy of further action, will seek the written opinion of the President or, in the case of the President, a Vice-President, or the Vice-President’s delegate, on the merits of pursuing the proposal.

Step Two (written naming proposal)

b) Once a written opinion to proceed with the naming proposal has been received, the President, Vice-President, Dean or University Librarian, as the case may be, together with the Development Office and Legal Services when required, will develop a written naming proposal in support of the naming.

Step Three (consultation and approval by the Board of Governors)

c) When the naming proposal pertains to a building or academic unit,

i)   the naming proposal will be submitted to the Administrative Committee for its approval.

ii)  If approved by the Administrative Committee, the naming proposal will then be referred for consultation to an ad hoc committee comprised of up to three (3) representatives each from the Board of Governors and the Senate as well as members of the University community. Members of the University community consulted must include a student selected by the Graduate Students’ Association of the University of Ottawa and/or the Student Federation of the University of Ottawa who is registered in the academic unit or attends classes in the building involved in the naming proposal.

iii) The recommendations of the ad hoc committee will be submitted to the Administrative Committee. The Administrative Committee is not bound by the recommendations of the ad hoc committee but will review and consider all recommendations proposed. The Administrative Committee will then either decline the naming proposal or recommend the approval of the naming proposal to the Board of Governors. 

d) When the naming proposal does not involve a building or academic unit, the naming proposal will be submitted to the Administrative Committee to determine whether the naming proposal will be:

i)   referred for consultation to an ad hoc committee comprised of up to three (3) representatives each from the Board of Governors and the Senate as well as any other person or persons the President deems appropriate orapproved without further consultation.

ii)  The decision whether to refer the proposal to the ad hoc committee for consultation will be based on the size of the donation, the visibility it will bring and the proposed named asset.

iii) Where the Administrative Committee refers the naming proposal to the ad hoc committee, the result of the consultation will be submitted to the Administrative Committee. The Administrative Committee is not bound by the recommendations resulting from the consultation but will review and consider all recommendations proposed. The Administrative Committee will then either decline or approve the naming proposal or forward the naming proposal to the Board of Governors for approval. The decision whether to refer the proposal to the Board of Governors will be based on the size of the donation, the visibility it will bring and the proposed named asset.

GENERAL PROVISIONS

Confidentiality

19. The University will make all reasonable efforts to deal with a naming proposal in strict confidence. However, the University is subject to the Ontario Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and may be required to disclose information related to a naming proposal as a result of a request for access to information provided for under the Act.

Records

20. Once final approval of the naming has been granted and the naming has been publicly announced, the official naming proposal, gift agreement and all related documents will be forwarded to the Office of the Vice-President, Governance.

21. The Office of the Vice-President, External Relations will retain a copy of all naming proposals, gift agreements and any related documents.

22. Physical Resources Service will maintain a database of named buildings or building components and is responsible for keeping the database up to date.

Policy review

23. This Policy will be reviewed periodically, when deemed necessary by the Administrative Committee. Any amendments proposed as a result of the review must be approved by the Executive Committee of the Board of Governors.

 

Published May 31, 2010

(Office of the Vice-President, External Relations)

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