Japan fails to produce elite universities: global survey

Tsinghua University in Beijing

Tsinghua University in Beijing

For the fourth year in a row, the University of Oxford led the rankings in first place, while the University of Cambridge fell to third. Both second-generation IITs established after 2008-09 have leapt ahead of other top schools and older IITs including those in Mumbai and Delhi, primarily due to their high score in research citations.

Auckland University of Technology (AUT) moved from the 301-350 band past year to the 251-300 band. The universities are judged according to several criteria including teaching, research, citations, industry income and global outlook in terms of staff, students and research. "A similar fall next year would mean that no university in Ireland would be ranked in the top 200 by Times Higher Education", the university said. "It now needs to back up these aspirations with high levels of investment - or risk declining further amid increasing global competition, especially from other parts of Asia", Ellie Bothwell, THE rankings editor, said in an email.

For the first time this year the U.S. News rankings include a new "top performers on social mobility" ranking, which uses federal Pell Grant data to look at the enrollment and graduation rates of low-income students.

The best Indian institutions are generally characterised by relatively strong scores for teaching environment and industry income, but perform poorly when it comes to global outlook in comparison to both regional and worldwide counterparts, the compilers said.

Despite the "impressive haul", only the University of Tokyo and Kyoto University made it to the top 200 list from Japan, fewer than China, Italy, Denmark and Belgium, among others, the report said.

This year's rankings looked at 1,400 schools from large research institutions with master's and doctoral programs to liberal arts colleges and regional colleges that award less than 50 percent of their degrees in the liberal arts. In recent years that has prompted more attention to be placed on alternative evaluations such as those by Washington Monthly, which ranks colleges and universities on their contributions to social mobility, research and public service. It now is the joint Indian topper with Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. Similarly, Delhi-based Jawaharlal Nehru University was for the first time ranked in the 601-800 group.

The California Institute of Technology rose three places to second, while Stanford, Yale, Harvard and Imperial College London all appeared in the top 10. U.S. universities make up 14 of the global top 20 and seven of the top 10, with the country's leading institutions performing particularly well in the area of citation impact.

Trinity College Dublin's position in an global university rankings table has slipped significantly after dropping 44 places in the World University Rankings on Wednesday.

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