Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Donor Naming and Recognition Policy

1. Introduction and Purpose

The purpose of this document is to set out the institution’s policy on recognising philanthropic gifts received by the University.

As an exempt charitable body, the University carries out fundraising activities to generate philanthropic income in support of its charitable objectives. Philanthropic gifts contribute to funding the University’s research agenda, student experience, and estate.

To create a culture of philanthropy and enable the Development Strategy, the University is committed to celebrating proudly donors’ generosity through named spaces, buildings, scholarships and academic posts.

This policy sets out the University’s policy on recognition of gifts through the naming of assets, to enable clear, consistent and wise decision making

2. Scope and Definitions

The University of Warwick is registered with the Fundraising Regulator and follows the Code of Fundraising Practice, which sets the professional and ethical standards that apply to fundraising in the UK.

Fundraising and stewardship of donors, is carried out by the Development & Alumni Engagement Office on behalf of the University, in accordance with the Code.

This document is owned by Development & Alumni Engagement and must be read in conjunction with the following University policies and procedures:

  • The Policy on the Solicitation and Acceptance of Gifts
  • The Policy on the Naming of University Buildings
  • Financial Procedure 9 – Philanthropic Gifts to the University.

This document acknowledges that while recognition of philanthropy and gifts can take place in multiple ways, the policy applies specifically to gift recognition where the recognition is via naming.

In the context of this policy, the term “Asset” refers to an opportunity that might be named in recognition of a gift. It includes academic posts, scholarships, centres, programmes, physical spaces and buildings, and other opportunities that may arise on a case by case basis, for example events and in memoriam opportunities.

The term “Gift” includes all philanthropic funding, income and donations to the University. For a detailed definition of types of funding that constitute a gift, see FP9.

All donor naming opportunities should comply with this policy. For further advice, contact the Development & Alumni Engagement Office via

3. General Principles

The University values the generosity of benefactors and is committed to celebrating proudly philanthropic support by naming spaces, buildings, scholarships, equipment, centres, academic posts, and other opportunities.

By showing appreciation for gifts received, the university raises awareness of philanthropy on campus, enhances the reputation the university and the asset, and encourages future donations. Recognition of gifts can also enable the University to satisfy the requirements of a Donation Agreement.

The following situations can lead to naming opportunities in recognition of gifts and philanthropy:

A. Naming in recognition of a gift – To express appreciation for an individual or organisation's philanthropic contribution to the University.

B. Commemorative naming – To recognize an individual or organisation’s connection to the University, or their extraordinary services to the University or campus community.

C. Hybrid naming – To celebrate an individual or organisation where both a gift to the University and outstanding service or connection is involved.

The University may recognize a gift by naming an asset in commemoration of an individual who is not the donor. The choice of name for recognizing any asset in relation to a gift, will be determined by the Director of Development in consultation with the donor. Any materials relating to donor recognition and naming opportunities will be in keeping with the University’s brand and identity.

4. Process

The Director of Development should be consulted in advance of any negotiations about commemorative naming and naming of buildings, to determine whether the naming opportunity might be attractive to donors.

The Director of Development will establish thresholds for naming opportunities in recognition of donations, in consultation with the Vice Chancellor.

Development & Alumni Engagement will be responsible for agreeing the details of naming opportunities with the donor or their representative in accordance with FP9, taking into account the agreed thresholds.

Where recognition of a gift relates to the naming of buildings or physical space on campus, the Director of Development will assess whether or not the naming fulfils the requirements of the Policy on Naming of University Buildings. In the event of any uncertainty, the Director of Development will consult with the Director of Estates.

Where the naming relates to a new or entire building, the naming must first be approved in accordance with the Recognition of Gifts Policy. On approval, the Director of Development will then make a recommendation for approval in line with the Naming of University Buildings, to the University Estate and Environment Committee.

5. Responsibilities

It is the responsibility of all University Departments (Academic and Professional) to comply with this Policy and to inform Development & Alumni Engagement of any potential naming opportunities.

It is the responsibility of Development & Alumni Engagement to liaise with donors, individuals and organisations to progress naming opportunities.

It is the responsibility of Development & Alumni Engagement to gain internal approval for naming opportunities in recognition of gifts. This includes naming of buildings and facilities in recognition of gifts.

It is the responsibility of Development & Alumni Engagement to communicate donor naming decisions to internal stakeholders once agreed.

It is the responsibility of Development & Alumni Engagement to communicate donor naming decisions to external stakeholders and to collaborate with the Estates and the Marketing Communications Team regarding any related promotional materials.

It is the responsibility of Development & Alumni Engagement to maintain an accurate record of all gifts recognised by the University.

Policy Document Control

Owner and Key Contact(s)

Andrea Crowley, Deputy Director of Development (Alumni & Supporter Engagement)
Date issued 21 May 2021
Approving body/ bodies Policy Oversight Group; University Executive Board
Related Statutes, Ordinances, Regulations, Policies and Guidance FP9 Philanthropic Gifts to the University
Policy on the Naming of University Buildings
Policy on the Solicitation and Acceptance of Gifts
Equality Screening Form submission date and outcome Completed 19 May 2021
Version Control
Current Version Number 2
Date of Last review N/A
Date of Next review 21 May 2024
Expiry date Every three years
Amendment History
Version No. Date Summary of amendments Author
2 25 May 2021 Change to Equality Form Submission outcome Andrea Crowley