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Oxford Martin School

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Oxford Martin School

Oxford Martin School
Oxford Martin School logo
Oxford Martin School logo
Formation 2005
Purpose Higher Education and Research
Headquarters Broad Street, Oxford, England
Director Ian Goldin
Parent organization University of Oxford

The Oxford Martin School was founded in June 2005 as the James Martin 21st Century School at the University of Oxford in Oxford, England.[1]


The institution is named after its benefactor, James Martin,[2] author of the books The Wired Society and The Meaning of the 21st Century.[3] The School's Director, Professor Ian Goldin, took up his position in September 2006.[4] A key aim of the School is to mitigate the most pressing risks and realise exciting new opportunities of the 21st century. With interdisciplinary teams of researchers from across the university, the School is working on the frontiers of knowledge in four broad areas: health and medicine; energy and environment; technology and society; and ethics and governance.[5] Aiming to have an impact beyond academia, the School also develops wide-ranging initiatives, intellectual programmes and public events to engage with national and international policymakers, business, students and the general public.

In 2010, the School announced the successful outcome of a $100 million matched funding scheme[6] that saw the number of research programmes in the School more than double.

Mission and structure

The Oxford Martin School's mission is to foster innovative thinking, interdisciplinary scholarship and collaborative activity to address the most pressing risks and realize new opportunities of the 21st century. The School is designed to be dynamic and flexible, taking up new lines of research and addressing critical questions as challenges and opportunities emerge. The School offers research funding and support for forward-looking Oxford University research projects that are organised into the School’s Institutes and Programmes.

The School’s central directorate provides strategic direction, administrative infrastructure and outreach support for its wide-ranging research activity. The central Oxford premises offer a research space for academics and a venue for seminars, meetings and events organised or supported by the School.


Research projects funded by the Oxford Martin School are selected through a competitive process in which the four criteria of Scale, Excellence, Impact and Value Added must be met. This means that all work is required to: address issues of global significance for the 21st century; be of the highest academic standards; have the potential to effect positive change; be innovative and interdisciplinary. Institutes, Programmes and individuals (known as James Martin Fellows) that receive funding are members of the Oxford Martin School. Together they constitute a unique, interdisciplinary community of scholars who collectively are tackling the challenges of the 21st century. Members contribute to and benefit from the School’s regular meetings, seminars, publications and partnerships, as well as various opportunities to disseminate research beyond the academic community.

Current Research Programmes

Formerly Funded Research Programmes

  • 21st Century Ocean Institute
  • e-Horizons
  • Environmental Change
  • Institute for Carbon and Energy Reduction in Transport
  • Institute for the Future of the Mind
  • Future of Humanity Institute
  • Particle Therapy Cancer Research Institute
  • Policy Foresight Programme
  • World Education Institute


The Oxford Martin School is a research and policy unit based in the Social Sciences Division of the University of Oxford. The School has various governance mechanisms and advisory groups to ensure transparency, financial accountability and standards of academic excellence in all its research and impact activities.

Day-to-day management of the Oxford Martin School is undertaken by the Director, Professor Ian Goldin, who has executive responsibility for the overall strategy and operations.

The School’s Management Committee,[7] consisting of the University’s four Division Heads and the Pro-Vice-Chancellors for Research and for Education, provides oversight and direction for the School.

The Advisory Council[8] of the Oxford Martin School is an internationally prestigious group of leading individuals in academia, private and public arenas who offer strategic guidance in shaping the School’s future work and enhancing its impact and global significance.

Directors of the School’s Institutes and Programmes are highly respected Oxford academics who actively lead the various interdisciplinary research teams working on many of the most important issues of our time.


  1. ^ Ford, Liz (1 June 2005). "Oxford institute to seek solutions to world's problems".  
  2. ^ "Interview: Agent for change".  
  3. ^ Martin, James, The Meaning of the 21st Century. ISBN 1573223239.
  4. ^ Oxford University Press Release (December 2008). "Former Vice President of the World Bank heads James Martin 21st Century School". 
  5. ^ Key research themes, Oxford Martin School.
  6. ^ $100 million raised for ground-breaking research, Oxford Martin School, 2010.
  7. ^ Management Committee, Oxford Martin School.
  8. ^ Advisory Council, Oxford Martin School.

External links

  • Oxford Martin School website
  • Oxford Martin School multimedia library

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