Definition of Russell Group in English:

Russell Group

proper noun

  • An association of UK universities regarded as having the highest academic standards.

    • ‘The Russell Group has asked a team of economists to undertake a wholesale review of university funding.’
    • ‘The top universities, the Russell Group and the 94 group, are more pleased than anxious to find themselves in the in-tray of the Cabinet's most powerful minister.’
    • ‘Sterling chairs the Russell Group, which organises the group of university chiefs pushing for top-up fees.’
    • ‘Universities, including elite Russell Group universities, are themselves open to accusations of grade inflation.’
    • ‘The pressure for top-up fees in England came from the Russell Group, who said they needed to charge fees to raise more money and stay competitive.’
    • ‘This is Southampton University, a Russell Group research giant which just happens to be adjacent to a large council estate.’
    • ‘This vision is embraced by the Russell Group, the Ivy League of elite universities, who have most to gain from differential fees.’
    • ‘Researchers found those who had attended a Russell Group institution could expect to earn 6% more than graduates of newer universities.’
    • ‘Some in the elite Russell Group of universities have already discussed what fees they would like.’
    • ‘One in 10 had offers from Oxbridge, while the others were hoping to go to one of the other institutions in the Russell Group of the top 19 UK universities.’


1990s: from the name of the Hotel Russell in Russell Square, London, where representatives of the universities first met.