Saïd Business School University of Oxford held a ground-breaking ceremony at Osney Power Station on Friday 22nd October 2021 to launch its new Global Leadership Centre (GLC), which will shine a 21st century light on the distinctive Oxford landmark of the Osney Power Station.
The old Osney power station, which opened in 1892, was Oxford’s first electrical power plant. From 2024, it will serve to power the development of leadership models now and for the future. The GLC will support high-level business and leadership education with a range of formal and informal teaching spaces. Teaching will take place face-to-face or remotely, using a range of resources, including state-of-the-art digital tools, designed to reach diverse teams globally.
Construction partner GRAHAM has been appointed to deliver the project and will carry out a full internal refurbishment of the existing building to create a number of new, high-quality teaching spaces alongside leisure and dining facilities. 121 hotel-style bedrooms will be created to accommodate some of the business school’s students. The ground-breaking ceremony was attended by Paul Polman, chair of the board at Saïd Business School, Louise Richardson, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford and Sue Dopson, Interim Dean at Saïd Business School.
Professor Dopson, said:
‘This is a transformative moment for Oxford Saïd and the wider community of the city of Oxford. I feel honoured to be part of a team which is propelling us out of the Victorian era of the Osney Power Station and continuing its story, by harnessing the best of new technology. Ultimately the Global Leadership Centre will provide opportunities to develop ideas to address global challenges. I look forward to seeing the benefits locally, nationally and internationally.’
Rob Joyce, Development Director at GRAHAM, adds:
‘This project will create a world-leading centre for education that honours both the industrial nature of the building’s history while providing a space that allows for both traditional and modern teaching practices to accommodate the changing needs of the evolving student population. We’re delighted to be onboard and can’t wait to get started.’
The Global Leadership Centre will be within a few minutes’ walk of the main Oxford Saïd building on Park End Street, creating a mini campus. The aim is to create close links between business and management research and practice.
The development of the Global Leadership Centre will form part of the regeneration of the west end of the city of Oxford, creating jobs and opportunities for the local community.
In line with the school sustainability values, the development of the Osney Power Station building will be as environmentally sustainable as possible. Its location close to Oxford Railway station and having reduced parking spaces, will encourage visitors to use public transport. Solar roof panels, green roofs and bird and bat boxes will feature, as well as cutting-edge principles for energy efficiency and the well-being of users of the building.