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Honorary Academic Titles Policy

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Section 1 - Purpose

(1) This Policy sets out the conditions for conferral of honorary academic titles at Macquarie University, and the benefits afforded to and obligations of title holders.


(2) Macquarie University recognises the importance of and promotes collaboration with individuals, other institutions and organisations in research, scholarship, and learning and teaching in Australia and internationally. The University provides for the award of honorary academic titles to:

  1. promote collaboration in teaching and research, and facilitate the exchange and sharing of knowledge, experience and expertise in pursuing the University’s strategic goals;
  2. recognise individuals for academic or professional / career achievements in industry or community that are of relevance to the work of Macquarie University; and
  3. establish and / or recognise a formal academic association with the University, where it is considered advantageous to both the University and the title holder.


(3) This Policy applies to:

  1. current or former Macquarie University staff;
  2. staff of organisations affiliated with Macquarie University; 
  3. individuals from outside the University who are eligible for the award of honorary academic titles; and
  4. current Macquarie University honorary academic title holders.

(4) This Policy does not apply to:

  1. appointment of Adjunct Supervisors for Higher Degree Research students – refer to Higher Degree Research Supervision Policy;
  2. appointment of Adjunct Supervisors (Placement) – refer to the Practical Placements Policy;
  3. award of honorary degrees – refer to Honorary Degree Policy; and
  4. award of Distinguished Professor title – refer to Award of Distinguished Professor Policy.
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Section 2 - Policy


(5) The University may award the following types of honorary academic titles:

  1. Emeritus;
  2. Honorary;
  3. Visiting;
  4. Adjunct;
  5. Conjoint; and
  6. Clinical.

(6) The appropriate title, its definition and purpose, levels, term and approval authority for the conferral of all honorary academic titles are set out in the Honorary Academic Titles Schedule.

(7) The title and its level will reflect an individual’s academic or equivalent professional standing.

(8) Nomination and conferral of the Emeritus Professor title will be in accordance with the Professor Emerita Emeritus Policy and Professor Emerita Emeritus Procedure.

(9) Nomination, conferral and renewal of the other titles will be in accordance with the Honorary Academic Titles Procedure.

General Conditions

(10) The award of an honorary academic title does not:

  1. establish an employment relationship between the University and the recipient;
  2. alter any existing employment relationship (unless it is intended to supersede that relationship); or
  3. entitle the recipient to any salary payments or alter any existing salary payments.

(11) It is expected that any activities in research and / or teaching at Macquarie University are performed by the title holder in the course of employment / appointment with another university or organisation, or as a volunteer in retirement.

(12) Normally, current continuing or fixed-term employees of Macquarie University are not eligible for honorary academic titles at Macquarie University. In limited circumstances, professional staff of Macquarie University may be eligible for an Adjunct title as per the Honorary Academic Titles Schedule.

(13) Honorary academic title holders will not normally be employed or receive payment from the University.  However, honorary title holders may be employed by the University where they are undertaking specific work for the University, and in exceptional circumstances, such as where:

  1. the payment is for activities that go beyond the normal expectations of an honorary title holder and which are of a temporary nature; and/or 
  2. the honorary title holder is undertaking research and holds external funding which allows for the full or partial payment of a salary and the research work undertaken, or deliverables, go beyond the normal expectations of an honorary title holder. 

(14) For the avoidance of doubt:

  1. for the duration of any employment relationship, the title holder will have the same rights and obligations as any other Macquarie University employee; and
  2. in the exceptional circumstances outlined above an individual may simultaneously hold an honorary title and an employment relationship with Macquarie University; and
  3. employment under clause 13 will be subject to the Approval of the Executive Dean, following consultation with the Chief People Officer; and
  4. employment will be in accordance with the relevant industrial instrument.

(15) An honorary academic title holder may be reimbursed for reasonable expenses incurred in the exercise of their honorary role, where approved by the appropriate delegate in advance of incurring the expenses. 

(16) Normally, honorary academic titles are restricted to one (1) per person.

(17) When using the conferred title, the full title must be used with the exception of Conjoint title holders, who have an option to leave the word ‘Conjoint’ from their honorary academic title. The appropriate format for the use of titles is set out in the Honorary Academic Titles Procedure.

(18) Title holders are accountable to the designated Head of Department, or where appropriate, Executive Dean or a Deputy Vice-Chancellor.

(19) It is anticipated that Honorary, Visiting, Adjunct and Clinical title holders will contribute to the research and / or teaching activities of Macquarie University commensurate with their standing. Their contributions may include for example:

  1. participation in independent and / or joint research programs including publishing and acting as grant Chief Investigator and partner, subject to grant conditions;
  2. co-supervision of Higher Degree Research students;
  3. guest presentations to undergraduate and / or postgraduate students; and / or
  4. consulting on research, teaching and curriculum development matters.

(20) Conjoint title holders are expected to make a similar contribution to that made by academic employees at Macquarie University.

(21) A title holder is required to comply with the Macquarie University Staff Code of Conduct, Macquarie University Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research, Intellectual Property Policy, and other relevant University policies.

(22) Conjoint and Clinical title holders in the Faculty of Medicine, Health and Human Sciences are required to abide by relevant by-laws of the Macquarie University Hospital (if appropriate) and other relevant requirements. This would include: criminal record checks and working with children checks requirements, Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency registration and statutory requirements relating to health professional registration.

(23) Additional title-specific conditions are outlined in the Honorary Academic Titles Schedule.


(24) The honorary academic title holder will enjoy the precedence and courtesy due to academic staff of the University.

(25) For the term of their title, the title holder will have:

  1. use of the honorary academic title as specified in their Invitation Letter;
  2. identification number (OneID), Macquarie University email account and access to the University’s WiFi, VPN and Wiki;
  3. access to Macquarie University Library resources, including remote access to online collection;
  4. access to on-campus parking on payment of prescribed fees; and
  5. staff rates for purchases at U@MQ/Campus Life.

(26) A number of additional privileges may be given to the title holder for the term of their title. These additional privileges are not an ordinary expectation of an honorary academic title, and will only be granted subject to agreement with the Executive Dean and commensurate with the requirements of the role. These additional privileges may include:

  1. negotiated access to Macquarie University ICT resources, including computer and telephone;
  2. negotiated use of space, including office space and access to laboratory and research facilities;
  3. negotiated reimbursement of expenses on presentation of receipts;
  4. negotiated airfares and living expenses for individuals visiting from overseas or interstate;
  5. negotiated conference support including airfares;
  6. ability to apply through the University to research funding bodies subject to grant conditions;
  7. ability to apply for internal research grants subject to grant conditions;
  8. approval to supervise research students; or
  9. ability to participate in Department or Faculty meetings and other activities.

(27) These additional privileges will be specified in the Invitation Letter and may be varied from time to time.


(28) Title holders are specifically excluded from the following:

  1. access to corporate credit cards;
  2. formal supervision of Macquarie University staff, with the exception of Conjoint title holders for whom this exclusion is waived;
  3. primary supervision of Higher Degree Research students, with the exception of Conjoint title holders for whom this exclusion is waived;
  4. authority to comment on behalf of the University, represent the University or bind the University; and
  5. recognition for the purpose of Academic Senate and Council elections.

Withdrawal of Title

(29) Honorary academic titles are conferred at the discretion of Macquarie University. An honorary academic title, and any associated conditions and privileges, may be withdrawn at any time at the absolute discretion of the University.

Merit and Equity

(30) Conferral of honorary academic titles will be based on merit and will recognise individual’s academic and professional achievements relevant to the type and level of the honorary academic title. The University will adhere to the principles of equity and non-discrimination.

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Section 3 - Procedures

(31) Refer to the Honorary Academic Titles Procedure.

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Section 4 - Guidelines

(32) Nil.

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Section 5 - Definitions

(33) The following definition applies for the purpose of this Policy:

  1. Honorary academic title means an academic title awarded to an individual who is typically not employed by Macquarie University, but who is a collaborator for research and / or teaching and / or where a formal academic association is mutually beneficial.