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Western Sydney University in Australia has topped the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2023. The rankings are the only global performance tables that assess universities against the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. For the 17 goals, universities are assessed across four broad areas: research, stewardship, outreach and teaching. This year’s rankings include 1,591 universities from 112 countries/regions. Australian and Canadian institutions ruled the top spots on the list.
The overall ranking is led by Australia’s Western Sydney University for the second year in a row. The UK’s University of Manchester follows in second place, while Canada-based Queen’s University takes the third spot. The top institution from an emerging economy is Universiti Sains Malaysia, ranking at fourth. The UK is the most-represented nation in the top 100 with 26 institutions, followed by Australia with 16 and Canada with 15.
University of Tasmania, Arizona State University (Tempe), University of Alberta in Canada, RMIT University in Australia, Aalborg University in Denmark and Canada’s University of Victoria rounded out the top 10.
Besides the overall rankings, the universities are ranked for their commitment towards each individual goal as well. For eg., Universiti Sains Malaysia ranked first for research on poverty and their support for poor students and citizens in the local community. For gender equality, Western Sydney topped the list. Germany’s University Erlangen-Nuremberg, University of Stuttgart and Technical University of Munich topped the Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure list along with Norway’s University of Twente.
The Quality Education ranking focuses on universities’ contribution to early years and lifelong learning, their research on quality education and their commitment to inclusive education. Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Ghana topped the list, followed by Aalborg University of Denmark and Hong Kong’s Lingnan University, Hong Kong Baptist University and Chinese University of Hong Kong.
The Impact Rankings are a way for universities to display their rapid improvement in certain areas by providing evidence of improvement and announcing new policies. This is the fifth year the rankings have been released.