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Conferment and Inauguration Ceremony

The Conferment and Inauguration Ceremony is a party for Malmö University staff and students. During the evening we will celebrate employees who, after many years of hard work within academia, will be awarded doctoral titles or inaugurated as professors at Malmö University.

The celebration kicks off with a ceremony at Malmö Live on October 19, 2018, from 16.00 to 18.00. The ceremony will start with a procession, during which the new professors and doctors will be presented and the three traditional insignia — the doctoral hat, diploma and ring — will be handed out. The award for this year’s best thesis will be granted, as well as the Stefan Bengstsson Award and other prizes. There will also be music and entertainment provided by Malmö University’s Academic Choir and Orchestra and other guest artists.

Mingle with students and staff
From 18.00 onwards, all registered guests are welcome to the ‘Academic Lounge’ on the ground floor of the Niagara building, just across the street from Malmö Live. You’ll be offered a glass of sparkling wine on arrival and will have the opportunity to congratulate the new doctors and professors. To ensure participation, please make sure to sign up by October 12.

Event: Conferment and Inauguration Ceremony

Open to: All employees and students at Malmö University, as well as invited guests

Location: Malmö Live and Niagara, Dag Hammarskjölds Torg 4 and Nordenskiöldsgatan 1, Malmö

Time: October 19, 2018, from 16.00 onwards

When you arrive at Malmö Live on October 19, you will receive a ticket that grants you access to both the ceremony and the Academic Lounge. Please make sure to arrive well in advance, preferably at least fifteen minutes before the ceremony starts. For guests who are not taking part in the procession, no formal dress code is required; however, many people choose to dress a little smarter than usual.  

Sign up for the Conferment and Inauguration Ceremony

We look forward to welcoming you!

How often do you get to wear your doctoral hat?
In order for new doctors to feel truly welcome in the academic community, employees who have already have already been through the inauguration process themselves are invited to participate in the procession as a symbolic gesture of affinity. If you have a doctoral hat, feel free to wear it for the occasion. Gowns can be borrowed on request. Please email sofia.nilsson@mau.se to confirm your participation in the procession.


The Annual Celebration has changed shape

As previously announced, the University has, as of 2018, chosen to split what was previously known as the ‘Annual Celebration’ into two separate events — one in the autumn and one in the spring. In the autumn the focus is on celebrating new doctors and professors, while the spring festivities are held in conjunction with students' exams and graduation.

The programme for the spring celebration has not yet been determined. More information will follow at a later date.



The Conferment and Inauguration Ceremony is a party for Malmö University staff and students. During the evening we will celebrate employees who, after many years of hard work within academia, will be awarded doctoral titles or inaugurated as professors at Malmö University.

This year’s Conferment and Inauguration Ceremony takes place at Malmö Live on October 19, 2018. All University students, alumni and staff are welcome!
Read more and sign up here

Watch the film from 2017 year's ceremony

New to academia?

Here is a list of useful terms related to the Conferment and Inauguration Ceremony.

The conferment of new doctors

Those who wish to continue their education beyond master’s studies can apply for a PhD, also known as a doctoral degree. A doctoral degree usually takes around four to five years to complete and culminates in a dissertation in which the doctoral candidates defend the research conducted during their studies. This is called a thesis defence. When the thesis has been approved through examination, the candidate is conferred, meaning that they are welcomed into the community of doctors through a ceremony — the conferment — and are given the title ‘Doctor’, or ‘doktor efter erlagda prov’ in Swedish.

The University can also confer a person who has not taken a formal exam by awarding them an honorary doctorate. This is a way for the University to recognise and honour a person who, through means other than research, has contributed to the development of a specific field. Doctors who have held a doctorate for 50 years or more are called jubilee doctors.

The inauguration of professors

A newly-appointed doctor may continue their studies at the University and conduct further research. Often, this research is combined with teaching at the University. A doctor may eventually become a professor. Professors are responsible for research and postgraduate studies at the faculty where they work. A professor officially assumes their new office at the inauguration ceremony.

A ceremony steeped in tradition

There are many medieval traditions surrounding ceremonies where new doctors and professors are celebrated and welcomed, and some of these are upheld to this day.

The Swedish word ‘promovera’ comes from the Latin word promovere and means moving forward — to promote. The traditional insignia are items that are presented at the ceremony. The doctoral hat symbolises freedom and power. The laurel wreath is a victory symbol from antiquity and has also been used as an award for poets, and, at early universities, as a reward for scholarly efforts. The ring symbolises loyalty to science. Finally, all new doctors receive a diploma, which was originally a written confirmation of their rights. Even today, the diploma is often written in Latin, rolled up and sealed.

The procession

The podium in the conferment context is called a parnassus, a term taken from Greek mythology that symbolises knowledge and learnedness. The procession over the parnassus reflects the long journey that leads to the attainment of knowledge. When the new doctors, the promovendi, are guided across the parnassus, they independently transition into to a new stage of their educational career.

The gown

During the procession that initiates Malmö University Conferment and Inauguration Ceremony, gowns are worn. The gown is a thin garment that is worn on top of a dress, suit, or other clothing. The gown symbolises that everyone is equal within the sciences; no matter how worn or threadbare your clothing, it is your academic merit that counts. Malmö University’s gowns are black and burgundy and designed by Kerstin Fröberg from the textile company Bergdala Spinnhus. The back of the gown bears the stylised letter ‘M’.

Last updated by Sara Appelquist