Oxford University is considering opening its first foreign campus in response to the UK leaving the European Union. This would break the university’s 700 year tradition as it has never opened a foreign branch.
The former director of the French ministry for education, Jean-Michel Blanquer, confirmed French authorities were working to bring the UK’s top universities to France.
Oxford University has been informed that such a campus would have French legal status and therefore continue to receive EU funding after Brexit.
If its plans come into fruition, the construction of a new Oxford University campus in Paris could begin as early as 2018.
The possibility that Brexit could lead to European research funding being withdrawn from UK universities has been described as a “disaster”, by academics. In addition, there are persistent concerns that a lack of access to Europe will make UK universities less attractive to potential students and staff members.
A decision has yet to be reached, but a spokesman for Oxford said: “Oxford has been an international university throughout its history and it is determined to remain open to the world whatever the future political landscape looks like.”
The former director-general of the French ministry for education and the Dean of Ecole Supérieure des Sciences Economiques et Commerciales, Jean-Michel Blanquer, has confirmed that the Université Paris Seine already has plans for a new international campus.
He has also met with officials from the University of Warwick to discuss the proposals.
(Image: Oxford University)