Response to THE BRICS & Emerging Economies Rankings 2015

4 December 2014

Times Higher Education has published its second annual BRICS and Emerging Economies Rankings. Eighteen countries are featured in the 2015 rankings, with fifteen universities (from Chile, China, India, Malaysia, Pakistan, Russia and Turkey) entering the top-100 for the first time. 

Our Director of Higher Education, Gordon Slaven, commented: "While the change in methodology for this interesting ranking covers some of the changes, the 2015 figures highlight the vitality and rapid development of institutions in the BRICS and emerging economies, and how the international higher education landscape is changing very quickly. The UK cannot rest on its laurels."

China dominates the emerging economies, taking the top two places and with 27 institutions listed in total - an increase from 23 represented last year. Susan Milner, our Director of Education in China said "The new rankings reflect another strong performance from China, with Peking University and Tsinghua University firmly holding on to the top two positions in the rankings and four new entrants pushing up China’s total representation. Clearly China has the ambition and strategic resilience to compete in a highly competitive environment. It is only a matter of time until China starts to size itself up against established institutions beyond the emerging economies and many more of its leading universities join the ranks of global excellence."

India has strengthened its overall representation in the list, with eleven top-100 universities compared with ten in 2014. Rob Lynes, British Council Director of India, said: "For Indian institutions to fare better in the Times Higher Education BRICSs and Emerging Economies Rankings, firstly more institutions need to start sharing their data to participate in the Global University Rankings and secondly, the Indian institutions that are already in the top one hundred must focus on strengthening their research capacity and quality to compete with other institutions who are rising faster."

Our Director of Education for the British Council in Turkey and Wider Europe, Helen Silvester, said "The Times Higher Education BRICS and Emerging Economy rankings show Russia and Turkey are nations to watch. Both are investing in the rapid development of their university systems and their positions in this year’s rankings show this is paying off. Seven Russian universities make this year’s top 100 up from only two last year. In Turkey, all of the top five universities in its own 'Entrepreneurial and Innovative University Index' make the top 100 with the leader of this pack, METU, moving up six places to take the number three spot globally. Turkey’s second ranking innovative university, Sabanci, joins the top 100 for the first time this year, coming straight in at number 15 and bringing the total number of Turkish universities in the top 100 to eight. Boosted by initiatives such as Russia’s Global Education Scholarship Programme and the bilateral Newton Katip Celebi Fund in Turkey, now is an ideal time to capitalise on opportunities for collaboration with the higher education sector in these countries."