16 November 2018

TOP 500 is a list of the world’s 500 most powerful computer systems. It has been published twice a year since 1993. Systems are ranked by their performance on the LINPACK Benchmark. However, any system created specifically to compete in the rankings is not considered.

The top supercomputer system is Summit at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) followed by Sierra at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), both in the United States. There are another three US Department of Energy supercomputers in the top ten. Third place goes to the Sunway TaihuLight system, at the National Supercomputing Center in Wuxi. Tianhe-2A (Milky Way-2A), at the National Supercomputer Center in Guangzho, China is fourth and Piz Daint, at the Swiss National Supercomputing Centre (CSCS) in Lugano is fifth.

Tia Loukkola, Director for the Institutional Development at EUA, in a critical yet well balanced article The making of university rankings – Has anything changed? points out that while the number of rankings has been growing “rankings continue to judge universities largely, if not solely, on research criteria. Educational or societal missions continue to be ignored. Even in cases in which there are criteria for mapping teaching perform.” The author recognizes IREG Observatory call for the transparency of ranking methodologies and its efforts to make rankings more professional.

08 November 2018

International rankings have become an important element in the marketing strategies of English-speaking universities such as the US, the UK, Canada and Australia. A recent research report indicates that this is especially true of Australia. According to an article in PIE (Professionals in International Education) News the Australian consulting firm Studymove has found that there is a correlation between the fees charged by Australian universities and their position in the QS world university rankings.

02 November 2018

In the latest edition of the US News Best Global Universities there are few significant changes this year. This is a research university ranking that does not attempt to assess teaching or learning. There are 13 indicators: Global research reputation (12.5% weighting), Regional research reputation (12.5%), Publications (10%), Books (2.5%), Conferences (2.5%), Normalized citation impact (10%), Total citations (7.5%), Number of publications in 10% most cited (12.5%), Percent of publications in 10% most cited (10%), International collaboration (5%), Percent of publications with international collaboration (5%), Highly cited papers in top 1% cited in field (5%), Percent of publications in top 1% most cited papers (5%).

There are 227 US universities in the rankings, with 130 Chinese, 78 British, 67 Japanese, and 62 German.

29 October 2018

Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) have released the latest in their series of regional rankings. The Arab Region rankings are generally quite stable but the first place this year goes to King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals of Saudi Arabia which has pushed the American University of Beirut into second place. The top five are completed with King Abdulaziz University and King Saud University in Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates University.

25 October 2018

The Cybermetrics Lab, a research group of the Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas (CISC) in Spain, has been producing global rankings of universities since 2004. Their latest contribution is derived from the Google Scholar database, which is now larger than those maintained by Clarivate Analytics and Scopus, and uses the Google Scholar Citations public profiles to rank those researchers whose h-index is higher than 100.

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