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 by publishing worldwide.

Oxford University Press is the largest university press in the world, publishing for three primary markets: research, education, and English language teaching. OUP’s mission is to create world-class academic and educational resources and make them available as widely as possible.


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 office in New York in 1896. Other international branches followed, including Canada (1904), Australia (1908), India (1912), and Southern Africa (1914).

Today, the Press is a global organization with more than 6,000 employees in 53 countries.


OUP products and services are sold in most of the countries of the world in nearly 100 languages. It delivers an annual turnover of nearly £800 million, with more than 80% of sales made outside of the UK. Many products are created specifically for local markets and are published by regional branches.

OUP products cover a broad academic and educational spectrum, partnering with technology partners to make content available to users in a range of formats.

The Press has become familiar to millions through a diverse publishing programme that includes dictionaries, English language teaching materials, children's books, journals, scholarly monographs, printed music, higher education textbooks, and school books. 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.


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

The Delegacy meets fortnightly during academic term-time under the chairmanship of the Vice-Chancellor, receives reports on the management of the Press from the Chief Executive and Finance Committee, and reviews and authorizes publications.

The Delegacy has established a Finance Committee which, under the general authority of the Delegates, directs and manages the business, assets, and finances of the Press. The Finance Committee consists of a chairman elected by the Delegates, the Vice-Chancellor, the Senior Proctor, six Delegates, and four individuals possessing high qualifications in business or finance (comparable to independent non-executive directors on corporate boards), together with the Chief Executive, the Press Finance Director, and up to five senior officers of the Press appointed by the Delegates.

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.

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