Governance documents

The University is an independent corporate higher education institution. 

Our governance arrangements identify who is responsible and accountable for setting the University’s direction and for overseeing its operations.

Council operates as the governing body of the University. Council delegates responsibility for delivering the University Strategy and management of operations to the University Executive Board. Council also delegates certain decision-making responsibilities and project delivery to committees.

The University publishes governance documents which are in the public interest or to meet legal or regulatory requirements.

 Staff can see all relevant policies on our Staff policies, procedures and guidance page.

Charter and Statutes

The University Charter incorporates the University as a legal entity, defining its core tenets, objects, constitution and powers. 

The Statutes, Regulations and Ordinances are the bylaws of the University. They set out our objectives, powers and framework of governance.

Central Hall

Charitable status

In 1963 Queen Elizabeth II granted a Charter of Incorporation. Under the Charter the University is an independent corporation with charitable status.

As an exempt charity, we are regulated by the Office for Students (OfS) on behalf of the Charity Commission, to ensure we fulfil our obligations under charity law. Our Office for Students registration number is 10007167.

The University makes annual returns of information to the OfS and also submits an annual Operating and Financial Review to Companies House.

The legal name and registered address of the University is:
University of York
Heslington, York
YO10 5DD
United Kingdom

The University’s trustees are the members of University Council.

Decision making

The Charter and Statutes set out Council's powers and governance responsibilities; for example, establishing new departments, fixing University fees, managing property and borrowing money on behalf of the University.

Council also needs to meet the accountability and governance requirements of the Office for Students (OfS), which regulates the University's activities.

Therefore Council delegates decision-making powers to the Vice-Chancellor and the University Executive Board (UEB), who have overall responsibility for the executive management of the institution and its day-to-day running, and to Senate, which is responsible for the academic governance of the University. 

In turn, Council, UEB and Senate delegate powers and responsibilities to subcommittees to progress detailed work in key areas.

The three Faculties are each governed by a Faculty Board that reports to Senate.

You can find contact information for Chairs, agendas, minutes and meeting dates on the relevant web page for each committee.

Other governance documents