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China tops THE BRICS & Emerging Economies table

Peking University retained the top spot for the second year running. Photo: Gary Larson.

"With China’s outstanding performance, the rankings provide a clear case study of what can be achieved with a coherent policy to develop world-class universities"

Turkey’s Middle East Technical University climbed two places to third, displacing South Africa’s University of Cape Town.

“It is only a matter of time until China starts to size itself up against established institutions beyond the emerging economies”

“Clearly China has the ambition and strategic resilience to compete in a highly competitive environment,” remarked Susan Milner, Director of Education for the British Council in China. “It is only a matter of time until China starts to size itself up against established institutions beyond the emerging economies and many more of its leading universities join the ranks of global excellence.”

Taiwan is the second most represented country of 18 with 19 entries, but has lost ground as National Taiwan University slips down to sixth place from fourth.

Moscow State University jumped five places to fifth as Russia’s top-100 entries rose from four to seven, aided by new judging criteria requiring fewer indexed research papers.

Meanwhile, the news was less positive for other parts of Eastern Europe, as Poland lost two of its top 100 institutions and the Czech Republic and Hungary each lost one.

Countries in the MENA region had mixed results: Egypt lost all three of its places in the top 100, whereas Morocco’s University of Marrakech Cadi Ayyad leapt from 83rd to 50th position.

The shakeup can be attributed partly to a recalibration of judging criteria that gives research influence a lower weighting and places more emphasis on ‘industry income – innovation’ and ‘international outlook’. A THE spokesperson said the change in emphasis “better reflec the character and development priorities of universities in the emerging economies”.

However, they also represent a fast-changing landscape across the emerging markets.

“Strong universities can be fundamental to a country’s economic growth, and with China’s outstanding performance, the BRICS & Emerging Economies Rankings provide a clear case study of what can be achieved with a comprehensive, coherent policy to develop world-class universities,” THE editor Phil Baty commented.

The BRICS & Emerging Economies Rankings 2015 Top 10:

1. Peking University, China
2. Tsinghua University, China
3. Middle East Technical University, Turkey
4. University of Cape Town, South Africa
5. M. V. Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russian Federation
6. National Taiwan University, Taiwan
7. Boğaziçi University, Turkey
8. Istanbul Technical University, Turkey
9. Fudan University, China
10. University of São Paulo, Brazil

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