LogoIn June 2011, EUA published the report “Global University Rankings and their Impact” which provided a comprehensive analysis of the methodologies used in the main international university rankings and a number of other ongoing projects that are seeking to measure university performance. As part of its Rankings Review project, EUA is continuing to monitor developments in this field for its member universities and will publish a second ‘Rankings Review’ report in November 2012.
The Editorial Board which oversees the Rankings Review project recently met to discuss the focus of the next report. At the meeting, project expert and author of the 2011 report Professor Andrejs Rauhvargers (Secretary General of the Latvian Rectors’ Conference), explained that there have been a number of important changes and developments in the international rankings field over the last six months including the development of new methodologies and the arrival of new ranking products. This means there will be a lot of interesting new material to be covered in the next report.
More details about the launch of the second Rankings Review report will be published later this year through the EUA Newsletter/website. Download the first Rankings Review report here.
Transparency and Rankings
In recent years, the demands to make the diversity of European higher education institutions and study programmes more transparent have increased. The Bologna Process, through its emphasis on a European dimension of quality assurance, a qualifications framework and recognition, together with the tools designed to facilitate their implementation, such as the Diploma Supplement, ECTS and the Lisbon Recognition Convention, has contributed substantially to this demand.
However, at the same time the number of international and national rankings, league tables or classification exercises has increased significantly. These initiatives often attract a lot of publicity and, as several recent studies have demonstrated, thus influence the decision-making of both policy makers and institutions.
EUA is actively taking part in the discussions on these initiatives and on how to respond better to the increased need for transparent information about the profiles and the performance of institutions. It monitors the progress on key European and international developments such as U-Multirank and AHELO as contributions to the work of the Bologna-Follow-up Working Group on transparency tools.
EUA’s Rankings Project
Background

Universities are increasingly confronted by a plethora of ranking and classification initiatives – both at the national and international level. This is why EUA has decided that there is a need to respond on behalf of the 860+ members it represents to carry out an ongoing project to review existing international rankings.
The first Review: “Global University Rankings and Their Impact”

The first Review “Global University Rankings and Their Impact”, which analyses the methodologies used in the main international rankings and presents the results of the first year’s work, was published in June 2011 and was presented to university leaders for the first time at a special one-day seminar which took place in Brussels, Belgium on 17 June 2011. Download the first Review here. The report is also available in french, here.
The second Review

The work will continue in the course of 2012, with the second Review expected to be published in November 2012. The EUA Rankings Review project is co-funded by the Robert Bosch Stiftung and the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation.