U-Multirank shines light on ‘hidden gem’ universities in latest release
U-Multirank, the largest global university ranking, has today published a major new release of data (www.umultirank.org) showcasing 1,500 universities and shining a spotlight on high-performing universities that would otherwise go unnoticed.
Now in its fourth year and involving more universities than ever before, U-Multirank has been able to identify ‘hidden gem’ universities that are bold new competitors on the world stage in a host of different areas. This allows students, universities, businesses, policy-makers and governments to make better informed comparisons of how universities worldwide perform.
Many university rankings focus on research citations and highlight a familiar selection of well-known institutions such as Harvard, Oxford, Stanford and Yale. However, because U-Multirank allows users to compare universities based on what matters to them, it also reveals the other strong performers in areas as diverse as research, teaching and learning, knowledge transfer, internationalisation and regional engagement.
Students wanting to identify the best performers in different disciplines can consult rankings across 16 subject areas, four times as many as in its first year. For example, in the engineering and computer science subjects, U-Multirank shows that Johannes Kepler University Linz in Austria and the University of Málaga in Spain perform strongly when looking at student-staff ratios, a key indicator in teaching and learning performance. This gives students an ability to make informed choices of the best universities for their interest. Students are also able to identify universities that do well in terms of international linkages and student mobility.
European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, Tibor Navracsics, said:
"U-Multirank gives students, parents and other stakeholders a valuable insight into the higher education institutions of their choice, across a range of parameters. This is vital to help drive informed decisions.”
While U-Multirank can support students choosing a university, the universities themselves can use U-Multirank to drive their institutional strategies, for instance with respect to internationalisation.
This year’s data reveals that business studies is the most international discipline, attracting globally mobile students and staff to move around the world, which has deep implications for international competition between universities in this field. The assessment of the internationalisation of study programmes shows the extent to which students studying different subjects might benefit from the global perspective being taken by their institutions. It also shows a potential for international partnerships, opportunities and recruitment.
Policy makers and government authorities can refer to U-Multirank when examining how universities in their countries and regions are performing in terms of indicators, such as their applied research, partnerships and regional engagement.
For instance, using its new data release, U-Multirank has today published a new ranking on Applied Knowledge Partnerships, which shows that the University of Deusto in Spain and Nuremberg Institute of Technology in Germany, outperform many others when it comes to transferring academic knowledge and research into practical and commercial benefits.
In another ‘readymade’ ranking released today, focusing on Research and Research Linkages, U Multirank discovers several well-known universities, such as MIT and Harvard, excelling in research performance. However, because U-Multirank draws on a wide pool of universities and uses a broad range of measures, it also reveals a number of small and specialised institutions that score among the predictable high performers in ‘citation rate’ and ‘top cited publications’, such as the Hanken School of Economics in Finland, the Institute of Cancer Research and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, both in the UK, and Rockefeller University in the US.
Professor Dr. Frans van Vught, U-Multirank’s joint project leader, commented:
“U Multirank understands and makes clear that universities’ roles as global centres of excellence stems from their diversity. A successful higher education sector is made up of many types of universities, not only large research-intensive ones, but also small universities, medical schools, universities of applied sciences and others.”
The fourth annual edition of U-Multirank is the largest since its launch in 2014 almost doubling the number of institutions and increasing the coverage of countries from 70 to 99, with 3,284 faculties and 10,526 study programmes. This year, U-Multirank has made it easier for contributing universities to take part, based on robust national data, resulting in more than 44,000 performance scores at an institutional level alone and another 65,000 at the subject level, making it the world’s largest global university comparison site.
Note for editors
U-Multirank’s readymade rankings show users how they can utilise its unique web tool to create their own personalised rankings using dozens of criteria at an institutional and subject level across five dimensions: teaching and learning, research, knowledge transfer, internationalisation and regional engagement.
The dimensions are also measured using up to 39 indicators for each of the subject areas including – new additions this year – economics, as wells as civil, chemical and industrial engineering. These subjects join U Multirank’s existing rankings: electrical and mechanical engineering, business studies, psychology, computer science, medicine, biology, chemistry, mathematics, history, sociology and social work/welfare.
U-Multirank is a European Commission initiative and is funded by the European Union's Erasmus+ Programme. 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. The consortium is headed by Professors Dr. Frans van Vught of CHEPS and Dr. Frank Ziegele of CHE. Other partner organisations include the Bertelsmann Foundation, student advice organisation Push and software firm Folge 3, as well as a range of national partners and stakeholders.
U-Multirank’s multi-dimensional approach compares university performance across a range of different activities grading 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. More information can be found in the Q+A memo.
Institutions that would like to participate in 2018 can express their interest on the U-Multirank website.