Up in Arms?

University of Oxford investments in arms companies have been criticised by a group of students, graduates and lecturers in this week’s Lancet.  Freedom of Information requests made by the Oxford Anti-War Action group show that between 2008 and 2010 the university invested £4.5 million of its assets, through third-party funds, in BAE Systems, Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, and other UK and US arms manufacturers. The group has not said which other UK universities it believes invest their endowments in arms firms.

Meanwhile, another university is in hot water over its financial associations. Cancer Research UK has criticised Durham for accepting donations from British American Tobacco and claim that the tobacco industry seeks to gain unwarranted respectability by association with credible bodies such as universities.