Finance and funding | University of Oxford
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Finance and funding

The key financial objectives of the University are to provide the long-term resources to strengthen and further its pre-eminent position – nationally and internationally – as a place of outstanding learning, teaching, and research; and to enable it to provide additional support to its three core priorities of students, academic posts, and buildings.

The University of Oxford’s funding comes from five main sources.

1. The largest source – £522.9m, which accounts for 43% of total income* – is external research funding, from bodies such as research councils, charities, trusts, foundations, and industry. Oxford consistently has the highest external research income of any university in the UK.

2. 15% comes from government grants through the Higher Education Funding Council for England and the National College for Teaching and Leadership. 

3. Other income includes annual transfers from Oxford University Press, income from the commercialisation of research, and philanthropic support (19%).

4. Academic fees, from both undergraduates and postgraduates (21%).

5. Investment income (2%).

*excluding exceptional income from the Research and Development Expenditure Credit and the Oxford University Press special transfer

Download the Financial Statements 2014/15 (PDF) 

University consolidated income and expenditure account 2014/15

University income   


Funding body grants


Academic fees and support grants


Research grants and contracts


Research and Development Expenditure Credit 


Other income


Oxford University Press special transfer


Endowment and investment income


Donation of heritage assets (eg works of art, historical antiquities)


Total income


University expenditure


Staff costs


Other operating expenses




Interest and other finance costs


Total expenditure



The colleges of Oxford University (apart from Kellogg and St Cross) are independent, self-governing and financially autonomous. In 2014-15, the total annual incoming resources (including donations for capital projects or endowment) of the 36 colleges amounted to £432m. Teaching, research and residential income accounts for 43% of incoming resources, while legacies and donations, towards both annual expenditure and endowment, account for around a quarter. Income is also derived from investments, and from trading activity such as vacation conferences.

Total resources expended amounted to about £360m in 2014/15. 86% of this expenditure was directly attributable to core activities, including teaching, research and residential services. The balance was split between the costs of fundraising, running trading activities such as conferences and tourism, and investment management costs.


The University has endowment assets of £834m. Individual colleges have their own endowment assets, which amount to more than £3.8bn.