ERIC Number: EJ723786
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
What's in a Name? For A Million Bucks or So, You can Name that School
Altbach, Philip G.
Academe, v92 n1 p46-47 Jan-Feb 2006
Although "naming rights" have proliferated in American higher education for the past several decades, the phenomenon has recently expanded to extraordinary lengths. In this area, academe fits right in with the larger culture, which has named everything from AutoZone Park to Gillette Stadium to the children's wing of your local hospital. Anything to get an extra dollar out of donors is fair game. This author contends that this type of "branding" weakens the focus and mission of an institution and perhaps even its broader reputation. It confuses the public, including potential students, and feeds the idea that the twenty-first-century university is simply a confederation of independent entrepreneurial fiefdoms. And although branding may strengthen professional schools, it ignores the core arts and sciences disciplines, where separate identities do not work. He argues that the trends that are seen now in the United States, and perhaps tomorrow in other countries, will inevitably weaken the concept of the university as an institution that is devoted to the search for truth and the transmission of knowledge.
Descriptors: Higher Education, Private Financial Support, Corporate Support, Donors, Fund Raising, Marketing, Institutional Advancement
American Association of University Professors, 1012 Fourteenth Street, NW, Suite 500, Washington, DC 20005-3465. Tel: 202-737-5900; Fax: 202-737-5526; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A