Shared Email and Public Folders


Public folders in Outlook are used to share information. For instance, a public folder might be for a departmental calendar, a message board, shared email, or a variety of other collaborative applications. Folder owners manage access permissions, for folders they control, and can assign new owners as required. If a folder owner is not available, access may be assigned at the request of the folder owner's departmental manager. Folder owners or their supervisors may request that a public folder have an email address assigned to it.

Common Uses

  • Shared calendar
  • Voicemail
  • Shared email

Public Folder Roles

  • Publishing Editor - All of Publishing Author + Edit all items
  • Editor - All of Author + Edit all items & Delete all items
  • Publishing Author - All of Author + Create subfolders
  • Author - All of Non-Editing Author + Delete all items
  • Non-Editing Author - Create, read & view items, delete owned items, edit owned items
  • Reviewer - Read items & view items
  • Contributor - Create items & view items
Important Notes
"Send-as" privileges for public folders is a separate, additional feature.
Public folder data/content/messages are NOT backed-up.
Emails replies from public folders (even with "send-as" privileges) will be in the sender's sent items.
If the public folder will primarily be used for email, a Shared Mailbox is the preferred tool.

Best practices

It is strongly recommended that your team discuss their business practices for managing email in public folders or shared mailboxes. These are some external links that might be helpful:

Getting started and support

To set up or get support for a shared email/public folder contact the Technology Service Desk at,, submit a request through the Technology Service Catalog, or submit a request by clicking Request Service on this page.

Who can use it

  • Faculty
  • Staff

Related Services

Mailing Lists
Cloud Storage (Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive)

Shared Email and Public Folders

Related Articles (9)

Follow the steps below to view Public Folder email in Outlook Favorites pane.
Public folders feature auto-reply. This feature can be used for Out of office or other automated responses.
Public folder owners and editors can find and restore deleted items (emails, events, etc.) using the Outlook client. NOTE: Items "permanently deleted" (i.e. deleted using Shift-Delete) aren't backed up and aren't recoverable.


Service ID: 12039
Tue 2/2/16 4:11 PM
Mon 9/12/22 1:56 PM