“Singapore has been keen to build the city-state into a regional education hub”
Of the 30 countries featured in the top 50, the US had the most cities (7), followed by Australia (6), Canada (3) and the UK (3). Norway, New Zealand and Czech Republic appeared on the index for the first time, represented by Oslo (48), Auckland (18) and Prague (45) respectively.
This is the second year QS has released the index. Ben Sowter, head of research at QS said it “provides students with a complementary tool to the university-focused rankings”.
“After all, a university experience is intrinsically influenced by the location, especially for international students,” he added.
Despite London and Paris topping the list, Singapore was the rising star of the index improving its position by nine places compared to last year’s rankings.
“Singapore scored the maximum number of points for employability, meaning the country’s university graduates are extremely well reputed among employers,” said Sowter. “It also scored very highly for quality of living, gaining 89 out of 100, giving the city a unique edge as students are increasingly looking for a comfortable environment combined with good job prospects upon graduation. “
Dr Li Mingjiang, Associate Professor at S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore, told The PIE News that the government has been keen to build the city-state into a regional education hub by encouraging foreign higher education institutions to set up facilities there.
“Generally speaking, students are attracted because of the fairly high quality of education at the three major universities including the National University of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, and the Singapore Management University,” he said.
“Some of the local private universities and subsidiaries of foreign institutions also offer highly specialised programmes that cater to the educational needs of foreign students. Many students like Singapore because of the multi-cultural social environment, lower tuition costs as compared to UK, US, and Australia, and vibrancy of the city and convenience of living.”
London scored just three points below Paris, but was the city with the most highly-ranked universities in the world
London scored just three points below Paris, but was the city with the most highly-ranked universities in the world.
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “With our streets getting ever safer and the huge investments we’re making in transport and infrastructure, not to mention abundant green spaces and unrivalled nightlife, it’s no wonder London attracts such a high calibre of students from across the globe.”
Cities are judged on five key “pillars”, made up of 14 individual criteria: university rankings; student mix; quality of living, employer activity and affordability. Cities must have a population of over 250,000 and be home to at least two ranked institutions in the QS World University Rankings to be considered.
The top 10 of the top 50 in full:
1. Paris, France
2. London, UK
4. Sydney, Australia
=5. Melbourne, Australia
=5. Zurich, Switzerland
7. Hong Kong
8. Boston, USA
9. Montreal, Canada
10. Munich, Germany