View current

Philanthropy and Fundraising Policy

This is the current version of the approved document. You can provide feedback on this document to the Enquiries Contact - refer to the Status and Details tab from the menu bar above.

Section 1 - Purpose and Scope


(1) The University of Queensland (UQ or the University) recognises the importance of philanthropy and fundraising in raising income to support its mission and strategic priorities.

(2) The University supports a culture of giving. In pursuing such opportunities, UQ will protect its independence and intellectual freedom by ensuring that gifts and philanthropic partnerships are consistent with our values, priorities and policies. 


(3) This Policy and associated Procedure apply to all UQ staff who act for or on behalf of UQ to facilitate philanthropic contributions to UQ. The Policy also applies to UQ controlled entities.

Top of Page

Section 2 - Principles and Key Requirements


(4) UQ recognises the importance of socially responsible philanthropy and fundraising practices with the highest standards of professionalism and abides by the Universities Australia Code of Practice for Australian University Philanthropy. UQ’s philanthropy and fundraising program is conducted in accordance with the following principles:

Gift Acceptance

(5) Gifts may be accepted for a specific or general UQ purpose. 

(6) The purpose of a gift will be consistent with UQ’s functions, as set out in the University of Queensland Act 1998.

(7) Endowment is the preferred option for funding academic positions or programs.

(8) To the extent practicable, the wishes of the donor of any gift to UQ will be honoured.

(9) The acceptance of a gift will have no adverse impact on UQ's admissions and awards policies, processes and decisions.

Recognition of Gifts

(10) UQ may publicly recognise donors and their gifts, unless anonymity is requested by the donor. 

(11) Public recognition of philanthropic generosity is considered in accordance with the Naming Policy.

Valuing Gifts-in-Kind, Stock or Property

(12) Gifts are to be valued in accordance with Australian Taxation Office requirements, and credited on the date the donor relinquishes control of the gift to UQ.

(13) UQ will determine and record the value of the gift independently.

Gifts Requiring the Outlay of UQ Funds

(14) UQ may match philanthropic donations to attract further philanthropic support.

(15) Gifts requiring a financial commitment by UQ (e.g. matching funds, financial contributions to construction projects) will be subject to the prior approval of the Vice-Chancellor or relevant member of the University Senior Leadership Group (for gifts directed to specific units).

Investment of Endowed Funds

(16) All endowment funds will be managed in accordance with UQ's Investment Policy.

Ethical Conduct

(17) UQ staff will act with the highest standards of professionalism and integrity when receiving or accepting gifts.

(18) UQ staff will not provide financial or legal advice to donors or prospective donors when planning or negotiating a gift.

(19) UQ staff will not knowingly encourage a gift if:

  1. the making of the gift is contrary to the donor’s or potential donor’s best interests; or
  2. the donor does not have the legal capacity to make the gift.

(20) Paid fundraisers, whether employees or consultants, are compensated by a salary, retainer or fee but not by a commission based on the number of gifts received or the value of funds raised.

Right to Decline Gifts

(21) UQ reserves the right to decline any gift:

  1. that is inconsistent with UQ’s functions and priorities or otherwise not in its best interest.
  2. that will create an unnecessary ethical or legal exposure for UQ.
  3. that will result in adverse publicity or impose unnecessary and burdensome responsibilities on UQ because of the gift’s source, restricted condition or purpose (including gifts that may compromise UQ’s integrity, autonomy and/or commitment to academic freedom); or
  4. that will require expenditure beyond UQ’s resources or impose unacceptable compliance obligations or administrative costs on UQ.
Top of Page

Section 3 - Roles, Responsibilities and Accountabilities


(22) The Senate provides oversight of UQ’s Advancement and Community Engagement program (via the Senate Advancement and Community Engagement Committee) and annually reviews amounts available, or expected to be available, to UQ by way of bequest, donation or special grant, and the spending of the amounts.


(23) The Vice-Chancellor approves UQ’s Advancement and Community Engagement strategy with support and advice from the Vice-President (Advancement and Community Engagement).

Vice-President (Advancement and Community Engagement)

(24) The Vice-President (Advancement and Community Engagement) oversees UQ’s Advancement and Community Engagement strategy and is responsible for coordinating University-wide fundraising activity under the direction of the Vice-Chancellor. 

Top of Page

Section 4 - Monitoring, Review and Assurance

(25) Compliance with the Policy will be managed by the Office of the Vice-President (Advancement and Community Engagement). The Vice-President (Advancement and Community Engagement) will also be responsible for the regular review of this Policy and related documents.

Top of Page

Section 5 - Recording and Reporting

(26) UQ Advancement and Community Engagement will:

  1. record, acknowledge, recognise and report to donors;
  2. appropriately manage and protect information gathered on donors and prospective donors; 
  3. issue receipts for tax-deductible gifts in accordance with Australian Taxation Office requirements; and
  4. periodically report to the Senate, through the Senate Advancement and Community Engagement Committee, regarding UQ’s Advancement and Community Engagement program.
Top of Page

Section 6 - Appendix

Definitions and Terms

Terms Definitions
Endowment A fund in which the donor has stipulated the principal be maintained inviolate and in perpetuity, but that all or part of the income derived from investment of the principal may be expended for the specified purpose.
Gift An irrevocable transfer of personal property (e.g. cash, securities, books, equipment) or real property by a donor, either outright or through a planned/deferred gift arrangement, for the charitable purpose designated by the donor and without expectation of a tangible or economic benefit to the donor except tax benefits.