The tradition to appoint honorary doctorates, doctores honoris causa, was initiated in 1839, when the first honorary master’s degree, as it was then called, was conferred at Uppsala University. However, the tradition did not become widespread until in the 1940s. A honorary doctorate can only be bestowed upon a person by promotion. However, exactly what achievements are honoured in this manner vary between higher learning institutions.
At the University of Gävle, we confer honorary doctorates at the Academic ceremony. At this ceremony, the honorary doctor receives the insignia: the hat, the ring and the diploma. The University of Gävle appoints researchers or lecturers employed at another higher learning institution but who have made vital contributions in their fields for the University’s research or education to be its honorary doctors. Honorary doctors may also be prominent cultural figures or other worthy individuals who have contributed greatly to the University and its activities, regionally, nationally and internationally.
New honorary doctors