The UK has 10 universities which are currently in the top 100 of the world’s best, but many of them have slipped down in rankings this year. Although Cambridge and Oxford remain in the top five, their rankings have decreased with two places in 2015, according to an article published on BBC News. The US is the one who dominates the ranking created by the Times Higher Education – Harvard and MIT are in top places. Asia also has 17 universities at the top, 7 more than last year.
These rankings are based on reputation and perceived status, they are based on the opinions of an international panel of academics, and are not to be confused with the university rankings based on research and teaching quality.
Three universities from London are still in the top third of the ranking – Imperial College at 15, University College at 20, and the London School of Economics and Political Science at 24. However, they all have fallen slightly from last year’s ranking. Other UK universities that also made the top are the University of Edinburgh (38), King’s College London (43), University of Manchester (joint 49), London Business School (between 81 and 90), and University of Warwick (between 81 and 90). The University of Bristol and Durham University have fallen out of the top, which brings the total number of UK universities in the ranking to 10 – down from 12 last year.
Phil Baty, editor of the ranking, says: “Even the country’s most prestigious institutions have slipped, with the universities of Cambridge and Oxford each dropping two places to fourth and fifth place respectively. The UK’s diminishing performance occurs as institutions in Asia rapidly rise up the table – the continent has 17 representatives, up from 10 last year. The UK will have to ensure that it can still draw in talent and investment from across the world and it does not lose its position at the heart of higher education’s global elite.”
Dr Wendy Piatt, director general of the Russell Group of leading universities, also declared: “These rankings can be seen as a warning that the rest of the world is catching up with us and Asian universities, in particular, are snapping at our heels. We risk losing out on further business and overseas funding unless there is greater investment on our world-class universities and a more risk-based, proportionate approach to regulation. Our key international competitors recognize that world-class universities are central to their success.”