International Migration

Oxford has long been a destination for international migrants, be it for work or study. The 2011 Census showed that 28% of Oxford's population was born outside the UK, compared to 19% in the 2001 Census. The most common countries of birth were Poland, USA, China (including Hong Kong), Germany, India and Pakistan.

Most people come to Oxford as young adults between the ages of 18 and 44 years, although nearly a quarter (10,000) of Oxford residents arrived under the age of 16 years.

Almost half of all the live births in 2014 were to mothers who were not born in the UK. A third of non-UK born mothers were born in the EU, another third from the Middle East and Asia, and the remaining third from Africa, non-EU Europe, and the rest of the world.

In 2011, 4% of the city's population (6,800 usual residents) said they had moved to Oxford from outside the UK in the last 15 months. There were also 4,000 short-term international migrants not included in the usual Census statistics because they did not meet the definition of 'usual resident' (someone living or planning to live in an area for 12 months or more). The majority of these short-term residents were students in their 20's.

Chart of the Month

Growth in Oxford's international diversity (January 2013)


Country of birth, 2011 Census 

Usual residents by year of first arrival in the UK, 2011 Census 

Usual residents by age at first arrival in the UK, 2011 Census 

Short-term migrants March 2011 - age, country of birth and economic activity

Further information

Local area migration indicators, Office for National Statistics

Migration Statistics Quarterly Report (national level indicators), Office for National Statistics

Home Office migration statistics