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Honorary Degrees/Doctorates

The Lincoln University Honorary Doctorate
The Lincoln University Council established an Honorary Degrees Committee in November 1992 to enable it to confer higher doctorates honoris causa and to establish guidelines for the award of honorary degrees. The Committee will consider nominations using the criteria below and will make a recommendation to Council regarding the award of honorary degrees.

The degrees available to be awarded are:

D.Com – the degree of Doctor in Commerce

D.Nat.Res – the degree of Doctor of Natural Resources

D.Sc – the degree of Doctor of Science

D.SocSci – the degree of Doctor of Social Science honoris causa

2017 Recipient
Annabel Langbein, D.Com.

2016 Recipients
Honorary Professor Peter Skelton, CNZM, Honorary Doctor of Natural Resources: Former Environment Court Judge Peter Skelton, now an Environment Canterbury Commissioner, is considered a pioneer in his field. In 1978, he became the first Environment Court Judge to be based in the South Island, with the expansion of a judiciary based in Auckland and Wellington. He spent more than 20 years in the role, and more recently, his depth of experience has played a key part in developing water management plans for Canterbury. Honorary Professor Skelton has always had a strong interest in access to justice both as a practising lawyer and as a Judge and in 2001 he was appointed the first Chair of the Environmental Legal Assistance Fund’s Advisory Committee administered by the Ministry for the Environment that enables community groups to obtain funding for resource management cases. In 2001, Honorary Professor Skelton was made a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit in recognition of his services to environment law.

Hon John Luxton, QSO, Honorary Doctor of Science: A recipient of the Queen’s Service Order and an A.C .Cameron Award winner, Mr Luxton is also a former parliamentarian and Minister of the Crown. During his time as a Minister, his roles were varied and an indication of his broad interests, knowledge and abilities. Mr Luxton is Co-Chair of the Waikato River Authority, Chair of the Asia New Zealand Foundation and of Hauraki Iwi owned Pouarua Farm Partnership and a Director of Wallace Corporation, Tatua Co-op Dairy Company, and a number of private farming companies. Mr Luxton recently stepped down from his position as the inaugural chairman of DairyNZ in 2015 after eight years in the role.

A list of our previous medalists can be found on our Former Honorary Doctorate Recipients page.

Award Nomination Criteria

The Nominee will be assessed on the following criteria:

1. The Nominee has achieved very high distinction in his/her field, whether or not that field relates to the fields of specialisation of Lincoln University. That achievement will be considered under the following categories:

  • Agriculture and Natural Resources;
  • Arts, Culture and Sport;
  • Commerce;
  • Environment;
  • Māori;
  • Politics;
  • Recreation and Tourism; and Science and Research.

2.    The candidate has established connections with Lincoln University:

  • on account of being a graduate or diplomat of Lincoln University; or
  • on account of being a former member of the Council of Lincoln University; or
  • on account of other connections with Lincoln University; or
  • on account of being a former staff member.

3.    The candidate has the potential to enhance the public profile of Lincoln University or of its areas of specialisation or to inspire the students of Lincoln University through being a role model.



Nominations close on 13 February 2018 for the 2018 awards and on 31 August 2018 for the 2019 awards.

To make a nomination, please download a copy of the form (Word version available via email) and send the completed form to Adrian Carpinter (Council Secretary):

  • Email:, or
  • Mail: Vice-Chancellor's Office, PO Box 85084, Lincoln University, Lincoln 7647, New Zealand
    Please do not attach any other supporting materials as these will not be considered. Curriculum vitae's are also not necessary)