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Both QS and THE released their World University Rankings of the year (2021 and 2020 respectively), among other sub-rankings, this month. Despite the mediated impression of the rise of Asia challenging the West, the top 25 spots of the two world rankings are still dominated by Western universities, particularly from the US and the UK, though in different rankings orders. Switzerland is the only continental European country with ETH Zurich ranked no. 13 by THE and no. 6 by QS. Another Swiss university EPFL is ranked no. 14 by QS only.
The new challengers from the East are Tsinghua University and Peking University from China (Mainland) which have made it to the top 25 circle of both rankings with noticeable jumps in the past three years. Except the National University of Singapore, which is ranked 25th by THE, the other Asian challengers can only be found among the top 25 on QS World University Rankings which is less dominant by American universities than THE. The differences are largely due methodological designs, such as the reputation surveys and weightings of different indicators.
With the proliferation of sub-rankings by world region, stage of economic development, subject, age of institutions, SDGS, etc., universities that meet the bare minimum requirements can also find their spotlight in the ranking games. The spotlight and attention of the global media do come with a cost, however, with the preparations to comply with the ranking criteria with or without the advice from the rankers themselves.
THE impact ranking is available here
The QS University ranking is available here