Oxford University Press facade
Oxford University Press facade
Credit: OUP

Oxford University Press

Oxford University Press (OUP) is a department of the University of Oxford. It furthers the University's objective of excellence in research, scholarship and education with a worldwide publishing programme.

The Press has an incredibly diverse programme, publishing more than 6,000 titles a year worldwide, in more than 40 languages and in a variety of formats – print and digital. OUP products cover an extremely broad academic and educational spectrum, making content available to users in whichever format suits them best.

The Press publishes for all audiences – from pre-school to secondary level schoolchildren; students to academics; general readers to researchers; individuals to institutions. The range includes dictionaries, English language teaching materials, children's books, journals, scholarly monographs, printed music, higher education textbooks and schoolbooks. The main criteria when evaluating a new title for publication are its quality and whether it supports the aims of furthering education and disseminating knowledge.

Many titles are created specifically for local markets and are published by regional branches. The Press sells more than 110 million units each year, most of which are outside the UK.

History

Oxford University Press has a rich history which can be traced back to the earliest days of printing. The first book was printed in Oxford in 1478, just two years after Caxton set up the first printing press in England. The University was involved with several printers in Oxford over the next century.

From the late 1800s OUP began to expand significantly, opening the first overseas OUP office in New York in 1896. Other international branches followed, including Canada (1904), Australia (1908), India (1912), and Southern Africa (1914).

Today OUP has offices in 50 countries, and is the largest university press in the world.

Publishing

OUP publishes more than 6,000 titles a year worldwide, in a variety of formats.

Its range includes dictionaries, English language teaching materials, children's books, journals, scholarly monographs, printed music, higher education textbooks, and schoolbooks.

Many of these titles are created specifically for local markets and are published by regional publishing branches. The Press sells more than 110 million units each year, and most of those sales are outside the UK. 

Structure

OUP's governance structure is written into the University of Oxford statutes. The policy of Oxford University Press is overseen by a group of delegates appointed from the academic staff of the University.

The delegates meet fortnightly during academic term-time under the chairmanship of the Vice-Chancellor. They are actively involved in the publishing programme; all proposals are referred to them for approval and individual delegates maintain a dialogue with editors in their specialist subject areas.

The delegates appoint a Finance Committee consisting of some of their own number, the Chief Executive of the Press and other senior colleagues, as well as outside advisers. The Finance Committee acts in much the same way as the board of directors of a company.

The Chief Executive of the Press is responsible for running Oxford University Press, and is also known by the traditional title of Secretary to the Delegates.