U-Multirank releases fifth annual world rankings of universities: Neither Harvard, MIT nor Oxford are number 1
U-Multirank, the largest global university ranking, has today published its
fifth annual release of data (www.umultirank.org) ranking 1,614 universities from 95 countries. The
latest results show that claiming the ‘number 1’ spot, depends on what you’re looking for.
With more universities than ever before, U-Multirank shines a spotlight on its richness of data and
highlights world-class university performance across: teaching and learning, research, knowledge
transfer, international orientation and regional engagement. The new results showcase the diversity
in higher education excellence.
U-Multirank publishes global ‘Top 25’ universities lists, highlighting 225 of the highest top
scores by universities. The US (18%), UK (13%), France (8%), Germany (4%), Chinese Taipei
(4%), Spain (4%), and Japan (4%) receive the highest percentage of top positions respectively.
As a whole, Europe performs best in the global ‘Top 25’ lists, achieving 56% of the overall top
scores, followed by Asia (21.7%) and US/ Canada (18.6%). Their top performance are clear
when looking at ‘Student Mobility’ where European universities achieve 24/25 of the top
positions, or ‘Interdisciplinary publications (19/25); Asia performs best in ‘International Joint
Publications and Patents awarded - achieving 10/25 and 9/25 of the top positions. The US is
strongest in ‘Top-cited and Research-Publications’ with 15 and 13 of the top 25 positions
U-Multirank offers 18 national rankings, showing the strengths and weaknesses of national
higher education systems.
U-Multirank now includes 21 study subjects, each with their own ‘Teaching & Learning’
ranking. These readymade rankings focus on U-Multirank’s T&L dimension, which includes the
student opinion of more than 100,000 current students at the respective universities.
U-Multirank now offers a total of six readymade rankings – pre-designed rankings made by our
higher education research experts, focusing in diverse areas of excellence, like ‘Research and
Research Linkages’, ‘Economic Engagement’, and ‘Applied Knowledge Partnerships’, as well as
Teaching & Learning’, ‘International Orientation’, and ‘Universities of Science and Technology’
across the 21 study subjects.
U-Multirank’s ‘Research and Research Linkages’ ranking showcases Rockefeller University in
the US with the highest score on Citation Rate – a key research indicator, followed by MIT and
London Business School. The 10 highest scores are shared between the US, UK and Finland
with seven, two and one universities respectively breaking into the top of the list.
U-Multirank’s university rankings make transparent the detailed performance of universities, so
students can make better informed study choices based on what matters most to them. This is made
possible by providing users with customisable rankings that not only focus on research, but the full
diversity of the higher education system. For journalists, U-Multirank offers tailor-made rankings and information upon request, for example focusing on university performance in a specific country,
university-industry relations or the most international universities.
U-Multirank’s transparent approach allows students, universities, businesses, policy-makers and
governments to make better informed comparisons of how universities worldwide perform.
Since its first publication in 2014, U-Multirank has more than doubled the number of institutions and
increased the coverage of countries, including more than 5,153 faculties and more than 12,500 study
programmes. This year, U-Multirank has made it easier especially for students to compare universities
their way, with an enhanced web design, including new features, like ‘Study in’ pages, easier to use
navigation and additional student resources. New this year, is also a downloadable option of the
U-Multirank data, allowing universities to analyse their performance against global benchmarks.
Notes for editors
U-Multirank originated at a conference of the European Commission during the French presidency in 2008. It is funded by the Bertelsmann Foundation, the European Union's Erasmus+ Programme and
Santander Group for the years 2017 through 2019. U-Multirank is developed and implemented by an
independent consortium led by the Centre for Higher Education (CHE) in Germany, the Center for
Higher Education Policy Studies (CHEPS) at the University of Twente and the Centre for Science and
Technology Studies (CWTS) from Leiden University, both in the Netherlands, as well as Fundación
Conocimiento y Desarrollo (FCYD) in Spain. The consortium is headed by Professors Dr. Frans van Vught of CHEPS and Dr. Frank Ziegele of CHE.
U-Multirank is an alternative approach to comparing university performance, and offers a solution to
the dangers of traditional league tables. Its multi-dimensional approach compares the performance of
1,614 universities across a range of different activities grading each of them from ‘A’ (very good) to ‘E’ (weak). It allows users to identify a university’s strengths and weaknesses, or the aspects that most
interest them. The data included in U-Multirank are drawn from a number of sources, providing users
with a comprehensive set of information: data supplied by institutions; from international bibliometric and patent databases; national databases; and surveys of more than 100,000 students at participating universities.
Institutions that would like to participate in 2019 can express their interest by emailing,