Awarding the title of Emeritus Professor Policy and Procedures


Staff members and Council members dealing with the potential award of 'Professor Emeritus' to retired or retiring staff members at the grade of professor.


This policy outlines the process for consideration of the award of the title “Professor Emeritus”.


The Honorary Degrees and Awards Statute 2019 states as follows:

Council may also, in its discretion and on the recommendation of University Honours Committee, award the title ‘Professor Emeritus’ to a retired member of the academic staff who held the office of a professor of the University immediately before their retirement.


1. Where a staff member is to become a retired member of the academic staff who held the office of a professor, the University may initiate a review by the University Honours Committee to consider the award of the title 'Professor Emeritus'.

Related procedures

1. The dean is to provide confidential advice to the University Honours Committee regarding the degree to which the retired professor’s service brought honour to the University.

2. The dean is to provide such advice to the Vice-Chancellor.

3. The HR Advisory team is to provide any supporting employment information that the dean requires.

4. The Vice-Chancellor is to provide advice through the secretary of the University Honours Committee.

5. The University Honours Committee is to consider the advice, and may forward a recommendation to the University Council.

6. The University Council then will consider the recommendation of the University Honours Committee.

7. Where Council wishes to offer the award of the title of “Professor Emeritus”, the Vice-Chancellor will write to the retired staff member, and invite them to accept the award of the title.

8. When the award of the title has been made and accepted, the retired staff member may retain and use the title of “Professor Emeritus” of the University of Auckland during their retirement.

9. It will be a condition of the award that the holder of the title “Professor Emeritus” will not use the title when he/she:

  • holds a position in the paid regular workforce
  • intends to or does offer academic services to another organisation in the tertiary educational sector, or
  • intends to or does engage in any activity that may or does conflict with the interests of the University

10. In the event that this condition is not adhered to, the University may exercise its discretion to withdraw the award of this title.


The following definitions apply to this document:

Staff member refers to an individual employed by the University on a full or part time basis.

Council means the Council of the University and the governing body of the University.

Retirement means permanently withdrawing from the paid regular workforce.

University means the University of Auckland and includes all subsidiaries.

Key relevant documents

Include the following:

Document management and control

Content manager: Associate Director, HR Services
Owner: Director, Human Resources
Approved by: Vice-Chancellor
Approval date: 16 March 2022
Review date: 16 March 2027