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Regulations for Committees Reporting Directly to Council or one of its Main Committees


Council Regulations 15 of 2002

Made by Council on 26 June 2002

Main Committees

Part 3: General Purposes Committee

Amended with effect from 8 May 2003 (Gazette, Vol. 133, p. 1335, 29 May 2003) and 7 February 2007 (Gazette, Vol. 137, p. 788, 22 February 2007)
Amended on 23 March 2006, 21 September 2006, 15 October 2009, 6 May 2010, 24 May 2012, 22 November 2012

and 1 January 2017 (Gazette, Vol. 147, p. 121-122, 10 November 2016)

Renumbered on 28 July 2011

3.1. The General Purposes Committee shall consist of:

(1) the Vice-Chancellor;

(2)–(4) the Proctors and the Assessor;

(5) the Chair of the Conference of Colleges;

(6)–(9) the heads of each of the divisions;

(10)–(12) three persons appointed by Council from among the members of Council specified in section 4 (15)–(25) of Statute VI;

(13) the President of the Oxford University Student Union.

3.2. Subject to the approval of Council on each occasion, the committee may co-opt up to two additional members, who may be internal or external members, for such periods as the committee shall deem appropriate.

3.3. In appointing the members at regulation 3.1 (10)–(12) and 3.2 above, Council shall always ensure that there is within the total membership of the committee an appropriate balance across the academic activities of the various divisions, and between the divisions and the non-divisional constituency as reasonably practicable.

3.4. The quorum[1] of the committee shall include at least one Head of Division and at least one of the three members appointed by Council.

3.5. The committee shall be responsible for considering matters of significance which do not fall wholly within the remits of the other committees of Council, in particular:

(1) advising Council on matters of a reputational or ethical nature which are of material significance and do not fall wholly within the remits of the other committees of Council;

(2) keeping under review:

(a) the University's compliance with legislation and regulatory requirements;

(b) policies in respect of issues or activities which are University-wide;

(c) procedures for identifying and managing risks across the University's activities;

(d) the governance and performance of the University's subsidiary companies;

(e) the University's relationships with external bodies;

(f) the public understanding of the aims and activities of the University;

(3) making, under the authority of Council, appointments by Council to University committees and other bodies, other than those to the General Purposes Committee itself, bearing in mind the gender balance on such committees and in general having regard to the appropriate representation of the various interests within the collegiate University;

(4) allocating statutory posts to a college or society and approving changes to such allocations or associations, on behalf of Council.

3.6. The committee shall have the power to make, amend and repeal regulations:

(a) under the authority, and on behalf, of Council in order to give effect to the committee's decisions and those of Council in relation to the matters and/or actions described in regulation 3.5 above. Such power shall not extend to the making, amending and repealing of regulations that relate substantively to the manner in which the committee and/or Council conduct their business; and

(b) concerning any of the following matters:

(i) the establishment of a new trust or other special fund for grants, lectures, prizes, the support of a statutory post, fellowships, scholarships, collections or similar matters, and any changes in existing regulations governing such funds (in cases in which the making of such provisions by regulation is permissible in law);

(ii) the removal of anomalies in existing regulations, and the making of consequential amendments to existing regulations which have been overlooked in earlier legislation; and

(iii) changes in the allocation of a statutory post to a college or society, in cases in which a regulation is necessary.

3.7 The committee shall also be responsible for advising Council and its other committees as required on the establishment of new University legislation and on amendments to existing legislation.


[1] Regulations 2.6 and 2.7 of Council Regulations 14 of 2002 specify that the quorum for all Council's committees, unless otherwise specified, is one-third of those members eligible to vote upon the business of the committee in question.