US News Global Rankings Focus on Research Output and Quality

The US News Best Global Universities is usually considered one of the four big global rankings, the others being the Shanghai Rankings and the THE and QS world rankings. It is a research only ranking that uses bibliometric and survey data.

The methodology is based on 13 indicators: Global research reputation, Regional research reputation, Publications, Books, Conferences, Normalised Citation Impact, Percentage of publications among the 10% most cited, International collaboration relative to country, International collaboration, Number of highly cited papers among the top 1%, and Percentage of total publications among the top 1%.

The US News does not publish previous editions of the rankings, so it is difficult to assess how universities are performing over time. The upper levels are dominated by US institutions with a handful of British universities. The top five universities overall are:

  1. Harvard University
  2. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  3. Stanford University
  4. University of California Berkeley
  5. University of Oxford.

Looking at the subject rankings there is a somewhat different picture. While Harvard continues to dominate a broad range of subjects in the life, medical and social sciences, Chinese and Singaporean universities are now pulling ahead in engineering and related subjects. Tsinghua University is in first place for Chemical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, and Engineering, Tongji University for Civil Engineering, and Nanyang Technological university for Energy and Fuels, Materials Science, and Nanoscience and Nanotechnology.

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