It was formed in 1997 to combine the resources of the universities so they can all benefit. These benefits include collaborative research, business opportunities, industrial partnerships, and joint postgraduatescholarships.
The White Rose Centre for Excellence in the Teaching and Learning of Enterprise is an aspect of the white rose consortium that aims to promote enterprise to all students through competitions and new enterprise courses, such as science with enterprise degrees.
The White Rose Consortium have also established an e-thesis repository, allowing the postgraduate research and doctoral student at the University of Leeds, University of Sheffield and University of York to upload their works to the database. The repository is part of a national and international network of online databases which enable access to research papers and proposals so that they can be found, read, cited and expanded upon.