Every year Times Higher Education (THE) asks academics around the world to name the best universities based on their judgement.
From close to half a million individual votes from more than 100 countries in THE’s global Academic Reputation Survey, its always just six universities (from two countries) that stand out.
The Best 6 Universities are:
- Harvard, US
- The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, US
- Stanford, US
- Oxford, UK
- Cambridge, UK
- University of California Berkeley, US
World 100 Reputation Network head, Mark Sudbury said that the reason the same six always appear is because “success breeds success”.
“The academic super-brands have come to embody the essence of successful universities – historic, attracting the best staff and students and the lion’s share of available funding, and being part of national and global discussions.
“And when considering the quality of institutions – whether through rankings or more qualitative assessments – success really does breed success.”
The top 10 by country ranking:
- United States – Harvard University
- United Kingdom – University of Oxford
- China – Tsinghua University
- Germany – Technical University of Munich
- Netherlands – Delft University of Technology
- Japan – The University of Tokyo
- Australia – University of Melbourne
- Canada – University of Toronto
- France – Sorbonne University
- Russian Federation – Lomonosov Moscow State University
Nick Dirks said that the institutions come in three pairs – each pair connected by co-location in a region as well as a host of other synergies that in turn have created an ecosystem that is far more powerful than any single university on its own.
“There is little doubt that the innovation centres of the Bay Area and Cambridge, Massachusetts, owe much to the fact that each region had two top universities with complementary research strategies; in turn, the growing ecosystem of these two regions helped sustain and further power its local universities.
“Cities or regions with only one great university could not compete with them, and so for years New York, Los Angeles and Chicago lagged behind in innovation, science and technology,”
He also said the next university super brands will potentially be coming from China and Singapore.
Tsinghua University is currently in ninth place, Peking University has moved from 16th to 15th to 13th in the last three years. Shanghai is not far behind with Shanghai Jiao Tong University taking 28th place, pairing Fudan in 39th.
The National University of Singapore has moved to 19th place from 24th along with Nanyang Technology University which moved up to number 40.
“Despite the super brands ongoing success, there is still a need to manage reputations – not least because the more visible a university is, the more likely it is to be a target for challenge.”