25 September 2017

In January 2017, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) and the Education and Finance Ministries indicated three targets: to develop world -class universities and world -class disciplines by 2020, to have a number of universities and disciplines among the world’s best by 2030, and for China to become a higher education power by 2050. The Double World-Class Project, formerly known as World Class 2.0, was announced by China in 2015 in a bid to develop world class universities and high-quality research disciplines.

On September 21st, these organisations announced that 42 universities have been selected to strive for world-class status and 95 are designated to provide world-class courses. They were selected by an independent committee and there will a periodic review. Those universities included in the project will receive additional funding and will be allowed to recruit the most able students.

The Chinese provinces are expected to prepare plans for the rationalization, including mergers, of their higher education institutions. Hubei Province, for example, is proposing to reorganize its system so that two universities will be among the best in the world by 2030. Liaoning Province plans to eliminate 15 universities and 39 disciplines by 2020.

There has, however, been criticism that the new list will exacerbate regional and social inequality. Many of the 42 chosen universities are located in Shanghai, Beijing and the coastal provinces while there were none in several less developed areas.

The Diplomat
Australian Government Department of Education and Training

IREG Initiatives

With the fast development of science and technology, as well as the internationalization of scientific activities, international academic awards have been more and more popular and influential. Numerous international academic awards have been established to provide individuals with incentives and motivation for new academic work and to reward past excellent academic accomplishments.


The purpose of the IREG Ranking Audit, conducted by independent experts, is to verify and attest that ranking under review is done professionally, with a transparent methodology, observes good practices and responds to a need for relevant information of various stakeholders, in particular students, higher education institutions, employers and policy makers.


National and international academic rankings play ever increasing role as a barometer of quality of higher education institutions. The purpose of "IREG Inventory of National Rankings" is to collect and make available on the IREG Observatory website information on the current state and scope of this important group of rankings.


The purpose of the IREG Guidelines for Stakeholders of Academic Rankings is to provide recommendations for appropriate interpretations, uses and applications of rankings by potential interested parties, including students and parents, institutions of higher education, policymakers, quality assurance and funding organizations, employers and the media. Specific recommendations have been formulated for each group of stakeholders.


News from IREG Members

The worldwide ranking UI GreenMetric Workshop in Bologna

This Bologna workshop is aimed to highlight the commitment of Italian universities towards a sustainable 360° approach. UI GM Chairperson, Riri Fitri Sari, will showcase the ranking’s structure and indicators in details. Italian participants are warmly invited to ask questions and raise issues concerning the specificity of the Italian universities to fit into the UI GreenMetric ranking. The Alma Mater Studiorum assumes the role of National Network Hub for UI GM in the framework of this event that will also host experts from RUS (Rete delle Università per lo Sviluppo Sostenibile).

Ranking conference in Warsaw

Polish universities feel, they deserve a better place in international rankings. To discuss what can and should be done to improve the quality of research, rectors of best universities in the country gathered 1-2 December in Warsaw at the conference “Polish Universities in International Perspective – Rankings and Strategic Management of University” organized by Perspektywy Education Foundation jointly with the Conference of Rectors (CRASP) and Polish Accreditation Commission (PAC).

Conference on Universities’ Reputation

Spanish Universidad de Navarra organizes the International Conference BUILDING UNIVERSITIES' REPUTATION Understanding the Student Perspective – Key to a Reputation Strategy, Pamplona, Spain 30-31 March 2017. www.unav.edu/bur

Report on Activities of IREG Observatory 2015-1016

Dr. Jan Sadlak, President of IREG Observatory on Academic Ranking and Excellence at the General Assembly held in Lisbon on 6 May 2016 presented a detailed report on activities of the organization, the President and members of the Executive Committee in the period: May 2015 – May 2016.

You may ready the report HERE.

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