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Welcome to our Responsible University Statement

People mingling outside the Palatine Centre 

1. Statement / Purpose

1.1 Durham University is committed to the highest standards of respect, professionalism and integrity. It seeks to conduct its affairs in a responsible manner having regard to the standards set out in The 7 Principles of Public Life.

1.2 The University strives to be a socially responsible institution and to contribute effectively to economic and social development. It is committed to delivering world-leading and world-changing research and education and a wider student experience as good as any in the world. It establishes partnerships with social enterprises and public sector organisations which facilitate translation of knowledge and understanding to wider public benefit; raising educational aspirations around the world; promoting volunteering and community engagement as a means of using expertise to contribute to social well-being; and promoting sustainable initiatives for the benefit of future generations.

1.3 The values which best describe Durham University are: inspiring; challenging; innovative; responsible; and enabling.

1.4 This statement sets out the framework which demonstrates the University's commitment to promoting high standards of individual behaviour and personal accountability to facilitate delivery of its social responsibility to the University community and external stakeholders.

2. Scope

2.1 All members of the University community - staff, students, trustees, official visitors and those acting on behalf of the institution - are expected to act in accordance with institutional policies, procedures and compliance with legislation.

3. Responsibilities

3.1 Those in senior positions are expected to set an example in their conduct and to promote and support good ethical behaviour.

3.2 Council is responsible for approving University policies and monitoring compliance.

4. Policy, Procedures and Enforcement

4.1 Members are expected to apply the following behaviours to uphold the University's social responsibilities:

  1. To research and educate responsibly
  2. To act with integrity
  3. To treat all people with respect
  4. To act sustainably

4.2 Each section provides information on how the expected behaviours should apply in practice, to support appropriate decision making and risk assessment and sets out the related policies and procedures with further guidance on addressing individual issues.

5. Equality and Diversity

5.1 The aim of the statement and the associated policies and procedures is to ensure that everyone is treated in the spirit of equality and with respect to difference.

6. Version Control

Approval date: 8 January 2019

Approved by: University Executive Committee

Contact for further information: