Shanghai Subject Rankings Show Global Research Excellence

ShanghaiRanking have just produced their latest rankings of universities by subject. These cover 54 subjects in Engineering and the Natural, Life, Medical and Natural Sciences. The results show that China is emerging as dominant in engineering research while the United States continue to lead in medicine and the life sciences. There are no rankings for the arts and humanities.

There are five research indicators that are given a different weighting for each subject:

  • Q1; number of papers published in journals in the first quartile for Journal Impact Factor
  • CNCI; Category Normalised Citation Impact
  • IC; the percentage of papers with an international co-author
  • Top; the number of papers in top journals and conferences
  • Award; the number of staff winning significant international awards.

The rankings show that China is becoming dominant in engineering fields. A Chinese university is in first place in ten subjects compared to eight US, two Singaporean, one British and one Swiss. This dominance is especially pronounced in Telecommunications Engineering where Tsinghua University is in first place followed by Southeast University and Xidian University. Chinese institutions take thirteen places in the top twenty. In other fields, however, US and Western European institutions still play a leading role.

It is also noticeable that French universities are doing extremely well in the Natural Sciences. Paris-Saclay University, Sorbonne University and PSL University are first, third and tenth for Mathematics. Paris-Saclay and PSL are ninth and tenth for Physics, and Sorbonne is ninth for Earth Sciences and third for Oceanography.


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