Coalitions and groups of universities

Many universities in the UK form part of one or more "groups" of universities. Some of these are totally based in the UK, others are international groups with universities from many countries around the globe. The reason these groups exist varies, but most are there to promote member universities interests in areas of research, teaching and funding.

Below we have links to some of these groups.


There are 19 members of the 1994 Group. Formed in 1994 to help promote the universities that are part of it. This includes promoting their research potential, common interests and sharing best practice. Many treat it as another kind of Russel Group.1994 Group Universities

The 1994 groups aims are:

  • Maximise the groups influence in policy making and decision by increasing the visibility of the group
  • Attract the highest calibre of students and staff through international awareness of member institutions
  • Maximising income to the members through teaching and research excellence
  • Co-operate on practices that increase student and staff experience
  • Collaborate to create services that allow members to adapt rapidly and flexibly with the dynamic market of higher education

Further to these aims the group has a set of shared values; that maintaining traditions and cutting-edge research are not mutually exclusive; internationally recognised universities ought to have a role and contribute on all scales; high quality research should be supported with high quality teaching and all students and staff from any background should be able to develop in a conducive atmosphere and environment that maximises their potential.


The Members


Unions94 was established to represent the student body at 1994 Group institutions. Membership is comprised of 1994 Group Student Union Presidents and Student Union General Managers.

Further information about the 1994 Group can be found on 1994 Group Homepage.


External Link

More information about the 1994 Group can be found on 1994 Group Homepage.

CMU Universities Group

CMU or Coalition of Mainstream Universities is a group created to represent those universities that were created after 1992 following changes in Education Act. Although many are classed as New Universities, many have long histories as college and Polytechnics.



Associate Member


External Link

CMU Universities Group Homepage


Golden Triangle

A term used to describe a number of universities in the UK. The triangle is based on the three locations of Oxford, Cambridge and London. The University of Cambridge is in the city of Cambridge and the University of Oxford is in the city of Oxford. Four universities in London make up the third point of the triangle.

These universities are regarded as the ones that gain the most funding of research in the UK and also have a worldwide reputation for excellence.

Recently it has become a term to denote that they as premier universities are becoming restricted. All of these universities are campaigning to government for a rise in tuition fees. They assert that they do not have the assets or financial backing to compete with other universities across the world for research.





The N8 Group comprises eight research-intensive universities in northern England. Rather than being a lobbying group (such as the Russell Group), it is a research partnership intended to enhance collaboration between the universities in the group. The eight universities have a total turnover of £1.75 billion and a combined research income of £620 million Northern research group appoints chief executive, University of Newcastle upon Tyne Press Release, 17 October 2005. The chief executive is Dr David Secher, based at the University of Sheffield. The group is part of The Northern Way initiative.

The group is initially focusing on five areas of research:

  1. Aging and Health;
  2. Energy Research and Development;
  3. Foresight for Sustainable Water Use;
  4. A Molecular Engineering Toolkit;
  5. Regenerative Medicine.

The universities in the N8 Group are:


External Link


Russell Group

The Russell Group universities are an informal grouping of 20 large research focused universities. The aims are "to promote the interests of Universities in which teaching and learning are undertaken within a culture of research excellence, and to identify and disseminate new thinking and ideas about the organisation and management of such institutions."

The name is based on the fact that the Vice Chancellors for the group meet for tea and cakes at the Russell Hotel, Russell Square, London.


The Universities

The following Universities are in the Russell Group:

Aldwych Group

The Aldwych Group is made up of the 20 student unions of the Russell Group. The National Union of Students, University of London Union (who has four members part of the Aldwych Group) and the National Postgraduate Committee are observers.

They try to represent the views of the students to the Russell Group. Some call it a watchdog for the Russell Group.

External Link

Russell Group Website


Universitas 21

Universitas 21 is an international group of 20 leading research intensive universities in twelve countries.

The purpose of this network is to create opportunities that would not be possible in a small group or if they did it on their own.

Universitas 21 also has benefits for undergraduates students. It offers them the opportunity to take part in a student exchange and allows students to experience other cultures and facilities, similar to a limited international ERASMUS scheme.



There are 20 members of Universitas 21.

United Kingdom


  • University College Dublin


  • University of Melbourne
  • University of New South Wales
  • University of Queensland


  • University of British Columbia
  • McGill University


  • Fudan University
  • Shanghai Jiao Tong University

Hong Kong

  • Hong Kong University


  • Waseda University


  • Tecnologico de Monterrey

New Zealand

  • University of Auckland


  • National University of Singapore

South Korea

  • Korea University


  • Lund University

United States of America

  • University of Virginia


External Links


University Alliance

Previously known as the Alliance of Non Alligned Universities, the University Alliance was set up as a mission group for universities that are not part of other mission groups. It comprises of a mixture of pre and post 1992 universities


External Links


Worldwide Universities Network

The Worldwide Universities Network was set up to aid understanding in issues of serious global concern. The WUN wants to bring members together to tackle issues facing society, governments and education.



United Kingdom


  • University of Sydney


  • University of Toronto


  • Nanjing University
  • Zhejiang University


  • Universiteit Utrecht


  • University of Bergen


  • University of California, San Diego
  • University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • University of Washington, Seattle
  • University of Wisconsin, Madison

External Link