Frequently Asked Questions
- What is ORG’s purpose?
- What makes ORG different to other organisations working in this field?
- Are you a pacifist organisation?
- Are you linked to any political party?
- Are you a charity, a think tank or a non-governmental organisation?
- How long have you been established?
- How are you funded?
- Why are you called Oxford Research Group, even though you are based in London?
- Are you affiliated with any other organisation called "Oxford Research Group"?
ORG works to promote a more sustainable approach to security for the UK and for the world. We seek a shift in global priorities away from militarism, and towards security based on justice, human rights, prevention of conflict and fair distribution of the world’s resources.
Many organisations undertake research, develop policy proposals and publish reports. However, we believe that we maintain a unique approach to the work that we do by focussing on the building of relationships through dialogue. We consider that attention to the quality of human relationships is key to any successful activity we undertake, regardless of what current projects we are working on. More information can be found on the What makes us different page.
ORG is opposed to the use of war and violence to resolve disputes but it does recognise that properly managed military and security institutions can play legitimate roles in defending and protecting populations. The principle that ORG stresses is that military force should always be a last resort. Conflict can almost always be prevented from becoming violent through addressing its root causes or, if it has begun to turn violent, be resolved through early dialogue and other non-military means.
ORG endeavours to work with all of the main UK political parties in order to understand and influence their foreign and defence policies. While some of our Advisors and Patrons are senior figures within political parties, and our staff are free to join or campaign for parties as individuals, ORG maintains a strict independence from party political positions. We often bring politicians from different parties together in dialogue, whether in the UK, Israel, Palestine or other countries, but we never favour or endorse any one party or political coalition.
Oxford Research Group is a registered charity (No. 299436), governed by a Board of Trustees. We are also described as a think tank or NGO (non-governmental organisation). In reality we are all three, but “peace and security NGO” is often a useful, if limited, short-hand. For legal reasons, we are also a company limited by guarantee (No. 02260840).
Oxford Research Group was formed in 1982, and became a registered charity in 1988.
We are entirely funded by charitable grants, individual donations and, more recently, by peace programmes within international institutions and foreign ministries such as the European Union, Norway, Germany and Switzerland. However, we only accept sources of funding that allow us to retain our independence and integrity. Unlike most security policy think tanks, for example, we do not seek or accept funds from the arms industry. More information can be found here.
ORG was founded by a small group of individuals who lived near Oxford and for nearly 25 years the organisation was based in and around the city, hence the name Oxford Research Group. In September 2006, we moved to a new office in central London in order to be more accessible to the majority of MPs, journalists, NGOs and others with whom we work.
Latterly, there are a number of other organisations operating under the name of Oxford Research Group in the US, Ghana and Denmark (the organisations whose websites can be reached at www.oxfordresearchgroup.com; www.oxfordresearchgroup.org; and www.oxfordresearch.dk), with which we are not affiliated in any way. Neither do we hold any formal affiliation with Oxford University.
Members of ORG regularly give talks on a range of subjects relating to our work. If you would like to ask about availability, please contact our office. Please note that, unfortunately, we receive many more requests to give talks than we are able to accept, and we would also ask for a small honorarium to cover our time and expenses.
Most of our publications are available to download for free from this website. Some are also available to purchase from ORG. ORG supporters receive a 20% discount on publications ordered this way. Please contact our office for more information.
The best way to keep up-to-date on ORG’s activities is to sign-up to receive our International Security Monthly Briefings. These are emailed to subscribers each month, together with news of ORG’s projects and publications.
Most members of ORG are available for interviews relating to ORG publications and projects or to comment on current events and security issues. Please see the Media information page for more information.
The best way to support ORG and the vital work we are doing to promote non-military resolutions to conflict is to become an ORG supporter. This can be done by setting up a regular donation by standing order for as little as £5 per month. As an ORG supporter, you will receive invitations to selected events and updates on our work. You could also become one of ORG’s highly valued Sustainers. More information on both these scheme is available on the Support us page. Here you will also find information on how you can make one-off donations by cheque or credit card.