Times Higher Education (THE) has released its latest rankings for universities in emerging economies.
This year’s Emerging Economies University Rankings includes 378 universities, up from 300 last year. It uses the same 13 performance indicators as the THE World University Rankings, but they have been recalibrated to reflect the development priorities of universities in emerging economies.
The performance indicators are grouped into five areas: Teaching (the learning environment); Research (volume, income and reputation); Citations (research influence); International outlook (staff, students and research); and Industry Income (knowledge transfer).
According to the report, the gap between China’s elite universities and the rest of its higher education sector is widening with the country’s Peking University and Tsinghua University claiming the top two places for the fifth year in a row.
The country takes a further five places in the top 10 (one more than last year) and one in six – or 63 – positions in the table overall, up from 52 last year.
In contrast, South Africa now boasts just one university in the top 10 – the University of Cape Town (9th) – which slipped down five places compared to 2017’s ranking of 4th.
Notably the University of the Witwatersrand has slipped out of the top 10 – down from 8th in 2017 to 12th in 2018.
Other universities, including the University of Stellenbosch (up six places to 38th in 2018), the University of the Kwa-Zulu Natal (up seventeen places to 41st in 2018), and the
University of Pretoria (up eight places to 66th), saw steady increases.
However, the biggest riser was the University of Johannesburg which climbed 49 places to 92nd.
In explaining the drop, researcher Ellie Bothwell said that while Chinese universities saw major improvements, South African universities had only noticeably improved in a few areas but dropped in others.
“South Africa, whose overall change is comparable with India’s, is falling back on reputation, overall resources and productivity – but improving on research quality and research income,” she said.
South African rankings
|South African Ranking||Name||Overall 2017 ranking||Overall 2018 ranking|
|1||University of Cape Town||4||9|
|2||University of Witwatersrand||8||12|
|4||University of KwaZulu-Natal||58||41|
|5||University of Pretoria||74||66|
|6||University of Johannesburg||141||92|
|7||University of the Western Cape||102||117|
|8||University of South Africa||251-300 (exact ranking not given)||251-300 (exact ranking not given)|
Overall top 10 rankings for 2018
|Rank||Name||Country||Number of students|
|1||Peking University||China||42 136|
|2||Tsinghua University||China||42 089|
|3||Lomonosov Moscow State University||Russia||29 236|
|4||Fudan Univerity||China||32 859|
|5||University of Science and Technology of China||China||16 032|
|6||Zhejiang University||China||50 051|
|7||Shanghai Jiao Tong University||China||37 288|
|8||Nanjing University||China||33 456|
|9||University of Cape Town||South Africa||20 775|
|10||National Taiwan University||Taiwan||31 758|