We've constantly evolved over the last 35 years to meet our client's needs.
Since we started in 1979, initially as a food policy research organisation with just five people, we’ve adapted to new challenges by acquiring new skills, expanding our team and moving into new fields. Today, we have more than 180 specialists on three continents covering a broad spectrum of policy issues, from climate change and debt management, to health and social protection.
1970s-1980s
1979
OPM was originally established by Roger Hay as the Food Supply Analysis Group at the University of Oxford, focusing on applied research to help solve the food security problems of Eastern and Southern Africa.  The Group's academic roots provided it with rigorous analytical skills that remain one of its defining characteristics.
1984
Continued to address the demand, supply and market for food and their role in understanding food insecurity. Added survey and statistical skills to its capabilities. Changed its name to the Food Studies Group to reflect its holisitc perspective - another key characteristic.
1985
Continued to expand the breadth and depth of its technical expertise, adding agricultural and social policy programmes to its portfolio. Clients now ranged from UK research grants, to the EU, the World Bank and the UN.
1988
Supported major reform initiatives in food and agricultural markets in East and Southern Africa.
1990s
1990
Undertook major poverty and food insecurity studies including in conflict affected Angola and Mozambique and around issues of national and regional drought response policy.
1995
Won a large ODA (DFID) project, an integrated household survey in Pakistan. Started to build an economic policy programme and extended the social policy team to include a health team.
1996
Established Oxford Policy Management as a limited company, separate from Oxford University, with the goal of combining high-quality analysis and practical experience to reduce social and economic disadvantage in low- and middle- income countries.  The company was owned half by staff (then just 12 people) and half by investors, former employees and friends of OPM, as it is today.
1997
Created a public financial management team. Continued to be at the forefront of research and policy debates - another OPM hallmark.
2000s
2003
Won a £5 million health sector reform programme in Georgia. Started the Armenia Regional Development Project.
2004
Began a six-year project to improve the effectiveness of Cambodia’s health delivery through pay, management and organisational reforms. Expanded into extractive industries.
2005
Established a financial sector team.
2006
Moved into social services. Started a major poverty-targeted, cash-benefits programme in Moldova.
2007
Opened first overseas office in Pakistan. Now more than 10 staff.
2008
Created a climate change team.
2009
Opened offices in India and South Africa. Won a World Bank project for health financing capacity building and strengthening strategic purchasing in Kazakhstan.
2010
Continued to expand, with staff numbers passing 100. Won a £10 million oil sector transparency project in Nigeria.