The recognition of merits eventually certified.

 

DOCTOR HONORIS CAUSA or honorary doctorate

The rank of honorary doctorate or doctor honoris causa (or ad honorem) is an honorific title granted by a procedure of exception. Originally a university, place of knowledge per excellence, used to grant the rank of doctor honoris causa to distinguish a doctus personality which knowledge and wisdom were considered as exemplary, but also to be able in return to brag for having recognised and "recruited" in its ranks said personality. In the past universities also granted some more picturesque titles than doctor honoris causa, like doctor or professor angelicus, eximius, mirabilis, subtilis, illuminatus... The intronisation act of a honorary doctor or doctor honoris causa is often still an opportunity for displaying an old protocole (formerly in Latin).

Nowadays the granting of an honorary rank or title like doctor honoris causa may answer to one the three following needs:

  • recognise and distinguish an exceptional personality who brought a notable contribution to his field of expertise, to higher education or to a specific institution,

  • honor simultaneously the recipient and the institution,

  • reward or encourage past or future donations.

 

Most sets of rules insist on moral qualities like probity, and another equally important criteria for the nomination of a doctor honoris causa is the recognition by one's pairs. Doctors honoris causa can be met in all fields of konwledge, be it letters and arts, exact sciences, human or social sciences, philosophy...

Actually honorary distinctions can be of distinct levels, the most appreciated one being of course the one of honorary doctor (doctor honoris causa), although the one of emerit professor (professor emeritus) is not disconsidered by teachers whose own university would not dare to grant the honorary doctorate, at least as long as they are in activity within their faculty.

The Université Multiculturelle Internationale, as far as it is concerned, grants an honorary master (magister honoris causa) and an honorary doctorate (doctor honoris causa).