The Russell Group represents 24 leading UK universities. We believe people and ideas are the key to meeting global challenges. Through world-class research and education we are helping to create a dynamic economy, stronger communities and a better future for the UK.

Our research-intensive, world-class universities play an important part in the intellectual life of the UK and have huge social, economic and cultural impacts locally, across the UK and around the globe.

Russell Group universities:

  • Generate almost £87bn a year for the economy
  • Support more than a quarter of a million jobs across the UK
  • Produce 68% of the UK's world-leading research (worth £34bn a year)
  • Teach a quarter of all undergraduate students, a third of all postgraduate students, more than a third of engineers, four out of five doctors and dentists, 50% of linguists, 58% of physical scientists and 63% of mathematicians

While our member universities have histories varying in length from 50 years to nearly 1,000, the Russell Group itself is a newer body, whose board members – the heads of the Russell Group universities - first began to meet in 1994. Set up as a professional, incorporated organisation in 2007, its aim is to help ensure that our universities have the optimum conditions in which to flourish and continue to make social, economic and cultural impacts through their world-leading research and teaching. We provide strategy, policy development, intelligence, communications and advocacy for our member institutions.

Our policy work focuses on:

  • Sustainable funding
    Ensuring our leading universities can continue to deliver a high-quality experience for students
  • Research
    Promoting world-leading UK research and innovation that changes lives for the better
  • Immigration
    Ensuring our universities can attract and retain global talent, to learn, research and teach in the UK
  • Access
    Continually working to make our world-class education more accessible to students of all backgrounds
  • International partnerships
    Seeking an ambitious future EU relationship and embracing the new global opportunities ahead
  • Environment
    Championing research into green technology, while mitigating the environmental footprint of our universities

You can find out more about our policy work here

(Source: HESA student data 2019/20)