The Royal Agricultural University is a limited company and a registered charity. The directors and trustees are all non-executive.

There are up to 12 independent governors who are appointed to serve for up to three terms of three years on the Governing Council. In addition in June 2019 the articles of association were amended to include a student Governor (with a shorter one year term eligible for re-election for a maximum of two further terms), a staff governor (with a term of three years and not eligible for re-election) and the Vice-Chancellor (for the time of being of the University).

Beneath the Governing Council are a range of sub-committees that either report to it directly or through the Vice-Chancellor's Executive Group; these sub-committees are chaired by governors.

The University is run on a day to day basis by an executive group chaired by the Vice-Chancellor.