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Universitetets huvudbyggnad i Vasaparken
Photo: Johan Wingborg

University of Gothenburg ranked top 200 by QS


The University of Gothenburg is advancing 22 places this year and qualifies for the top 200 list in the new QS ranking which was presented yesterday.
– It is extremely gratifying that we have improved our placement, says Vice-chancellor Eva Wiberg, who hopes that it is a proof of the university's successful international work.

For the first time since 2012, the University of Gothenburg ranks among the top 200 universities in the QS World University Rankings. The fact that GU is rising 22 places this year is mainly due to the two indicators of the proportion of international students and employees, where GU has improved its position.

It is positive because it increases our visibility in the range up to 200, which probably makes it easier to recruit international students, says Magnus MacHale-Gunnarsson who analyzed the results. 

Several reasons behind the rise

Another explanation is that the University of Gothenburg has also risen in the indicator Employer Reputation (from 15.8 points to 21.6). But according to Magnus MacHale-Gunnarsson, it is a shaky indicator based on dubious reputational surveys.

All Swedish higher education institutions are rising in this indicator, which is why we can assume that more Swedish employers answered the survey this year than before. 

Also in the citation indicator, which measures citations per researcher, the University of Gothenburg increases from 31.4 points to 37.2. 

– Most likely this is due to a method change, as all Swedish universities, except Umeå and Uppsala, clearly rise in this indicator, says Magnus MacHale-Gunnarsson who is still critical of the QS list methodology.

– There are many objections. Surveys are not representative, reputation surveys are given unreasonable importance and the rough field standardization creates a skew in the citation indicator.

Several Swedish universities are rising

In addition to the University of Gothenburg, five other Swedish universities are rising on the list. According to the ranking, two are among the 100 best in the world: Lund University (87) and KTH (89). Chalmers has also advanced many placements and this year lies ahead of Uppsala University and is in 121st place in the world. 

But the very best universities are to the west: the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in first place and the British University of Oxford in second place. Among the Nordic higher education institutions, the University of Copenhagen has the highest ranking.