Incoming Sponsorship - Operational Policy | UniSC | University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Incoming Sponsorship - Operational Policy

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Approval authority
Vice-Chancellor and President
Responsible Executive member
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Global and Engagement)
Designated officer
Director, Development Office
First approved
24 June 2008
Last amended
11 January 2019
Review date
22 November 2023
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1. Purpose of policy

USC is committed to ensuring that its financial arrangements are carried out in an ethical manner. The purpose of this policy is to establish the framework and guidelines within University of the Sunshine Coast for the creation of productive sponsorship alliances with corporations, foundations, individuals and other non-government organisations.

2. Policy scope and application

This policy does not apply to externally funded research or academic consultancy activities which may or may not provide a benefit to the funder.

This policy applies to all staff and entities within the University.

3. Definitions

Please refer to the University’s Glossary of Terms for policies and procedures.

4. Principles

The following are the fundamental principles that shape our relationships with sponsors:

4.1 Sponsorship of the University or of any symposium, project, program or event will not entitle any sponsor to influence any decision of the University.

4.2 The University will not enter into any sponsorship with any corporation or organisation where the association with the prospective partner or acceptance of the sponsorship would jeopardise the integrity or values of the University or adversely impact upon the University's standing and reputation in the community. All tobacco sponsorships are prohibited.

4.3 Sponsorships from private corporations and organisations differ from philanthropic gifts or donations to the University in that they are negotiated on the basis of a mutuality of benefit, they require a fully-executed contract of agreement (see Appendix A) and attract GST. For policies around the University’s acceptance of philanthropic gifts, please refer to the University’s Donation Acceptance – Managerial Policy; see also the Naming – Governing Policy.

4.4 All sponsorship must be consistent with existing University policies.

5. Policy

5.1 All event and project sponsorships must have significant financial commitment from the sponsor to help offset the costs associated with the activity.

5.2 All sponsorship arrangements attract GST, which should be calculated and charged over and above the agreed sponsorship amount.

5.3 The University will take a coordinated and strategic approach to its corporate and philanthropic community. To achieve this the Director, Development Office must be informed of, and give approval to, all intended approaches before any sponsorship requests are made.

5.4 Sponsorship relationships with the University must be identified and recorded in the Development Office’s CRM database.

5.5 Promotional use of corporate logos and colours by sponsors are not permitted in any permanent or ongoing campus signage (e.g. building or area signage, sports fields, or score boards) and are for an agreed period and must be in a form that is compliant with University policy.

5.6 Promotional use of corporate logos and colours may be included in printed marketing materials such as brochures, invitations, flyers and tickets. Promotional use of corporate logos and colours in banners or signage in conjunction with temporary exhibits or events may be used for a limited time period in conjunction with the sponsored event (i.e. within a few hours of the specific event’s occurrence). Corporate identification and logos should always be displayed secondary in size and position to the University’s branding. A description of the use of logos and colours must be included in the sponsorship agreement (see Appendix A). All use of the University logo must be approved through Marketing.

5.7 Sponsors must not use the University’s communications as a direct sales channel for their products or services.

5.8 The benefiting (sponsored) area must not, and must not appear to, unduly endorse the sponsoring company or its products. In particular, the benefiting (sponsored) area must put procedures in place to ensure that sponsors do not receive returns that are greater than is proper and proportionate and that any sponsorship agreement is able to withstand public scrutiny.

5.9 In-kind sponsorship is the provision of goods or services to support or enhance a University event or activity where free promotion is received in return. These arrangements are also liable for GST. To measure the value of in-kind sponsorship, the benefiting department or area of the University should consider the opportunity cost, that is, how much it would have cost the department if it had paid for the support provided. Such consideration should be given before the services or goods are accepted.

5.10 The Pro Vice-Chancellor (Global and Engagement) must be notified of all proposed sponsorship agreements, which require approval by the Vice-Chancellor and President or an authorised representative. All sponsorship, whether cash or in-kind, will be embodied in written contractual agreements between University and the sponsorship partner. No benefits will be provided to sponsors before a contract is fully executed.

5.11 An external organisation that uses University premises or facilities and wishes to display their own sponsorship signage during an event or exhibition will first obtain permission from the Vice-Chancellor and President or authorised representative. Permanent or ongoing signage which services the sponsorship of an external organisation will not be permitted.

5.12 Any signage erected on University premises can be taken down and discarded at the University’s discretion.


Appendix A: Incoming sponsorship agreement guidelines

In creating a sponsorship agreement each of the following areas must be considered and a clause included where appropriate

Description of the sponsorship: The contract will contain a comprehensive description of the item, project or event being sponsored, including a list of obligations for both parties.

Terms of agreement: The dates for commencement and conclusion of sponsorship must be included in the contract. All sponsorships should have a defined term with an end date, at which time renewal of the sponsorship may be sought.

Key personnel: The contract will include the names of the primary contacts from both parties, and to whom issues regarding the contract are to be referred.

Limitations on and approval of the use of the University’s name and logo: The contract will clearly detail the limited use of the University’s name and logo by the sponsor in its own internal and external promotion and advertising as per the negotiated arrangements.

Exclusivity: The University may wish to offer outright or industry exclusivity to a sponsor or the sponsor may request such exclusivity. Where agreed, an appropriate statement regarding exclusivity will be included in the contract.

Financial terms and schedule of payments: The total value and the payment schedule of the sponsorship agreement between the parties will be clearly identified in the contract. It should be noted that all sponsorships (including that of in-kind support) will attract GST and this should be added over and above the agreed sponsorship amount.

Obligations of the parties to each other: The obligations of the parties are dependent upon the form of the sponsorship and will be determined on an individual basis.

Breach of contract: Prior to initiating formal notification of breach of contract, the parties will undertake all appropriate and reasonable efforts to resolve the matter. Should these efforts not prove successful, either party may give written notice of a breach of contract, which may lead to the dissolution of the contract.

Right to discontinue the sponsored program or event: When circumstances beyond the control of University force the cancellation or postponement of a sponsored event or project, the University reserves the right to so cancel or postpone without liability or breach.