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KU Leuven makes Times top 100 universities

08:59 29/09/2023

KU Leuven university has once again featured prominently in a world ranking of institutes of higher education compiled by the Times Higher Education.

Coming in at 45th place, KU Leuven is the only Belgian university to appear in the Times top 100, which is dominated by American universities.

First place is held by Oxford University, followed by Stanford University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

The 20th edition of the ranking includes 1,904 universities from 108 countries and regions, chosen based on 18 indicators covering teaching, research, knowledge transfer and internationalisation.

Belgium appears just once in the top 100 with KU Leuven. Next-ranked was the University of Ghent (115th place), the University of Antwerp (161) and the Catholic University of Louvain-la-Neuve (168).

The ULB and the VUB were outside the top 200, with the University of Liège and UHasselt outside the top 300 and the Universities of Mons and Namur falling outside the top 500.

The United States has seven of its own universities in the top 10. Apart from Stanford and MIT, the list includes Harvard (4th place), Princeton (6th), the California Institute of Technology (7th), the University of California, Berkeley (9th) and Yale (10th).

There are also 56 American universities in the top 200 and 169 American universities in the full ranking.

The UK has three universities in the top 10. Oxford University is in first place for the eighth year running, Cambridge University is in fifth place, and Imperial College London is in eighth. The UK has 104 universities in the total ranking, including 11 in the top 100 and 25 in the top 200.

Two Chinese universities made the top 20, with seven in the top 100 and 13 in the top 200. In the 2018 edition, China had two universities in the top 100. The number of Chinese institutions in the top 400 has doubled from 15 in 2021 to 30 this year, with Tsinghua University ranked as the best performing Chinese institution at 12th place overall.

Although the US and the United Kingdom are at the top of the ranking, their position and power are diminishing with a drop (of four and three universities, respectively) in the top 200 since 2021.

Asia is the most represented continent with 737 universities ranked, with Europe in second place with 664. In Africa, the number of institutions on the list rose by 16%, from 97 to 113. The highest ranked university in Africa is the University of Cape Town, in 167th place.

Written by Helen Lyons