Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2015/16

30 September 2015

Commenting on the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2015-16, Dr Wendy Piatt, Director General of the Russell Group, said:

“The UK’s leading universities continue to punch well above their weight with 15 Russell Group universities ranked in the top 100 in the world.

“But we cannot afford to be complacent. The UK spends much less on higher education and research than our nearest rivals. Our competitors in China, Germany and Japan continue to be rewarded with significant investment and are snapping at our heels as a result.

“Increased funding for science, research and innovation in the UK is critical for the ability of our leading universities to stay ahead of the chasing pack and boost the economy right across the country.

“If we are to maintain our place as a global leader in higher education the UK must show that its doors are open to the very best and brightest academics and students from anywhere in the world.

“All league tables have their limitations and shouldn’t be used in isolation to make decisions about the quality of a university or degree course. No one ranking can capture all the strengths of a particular institution”

Notes to Editors

  1. According to the OECD report Education at a Glance 2014, the UK’s total investment in higher education was 1.2% of GDP: less than half that of the USA, and below the OECD average. UK public investment in higher education is 1.3% of GDP, below the OECD and EU 21 averages. Read more in the full report.
  2. The UK’s spending on research and development as a proportion of GDP was 1.67% in 2013. This is well below the EU average of 2.02%, the spending of 2.08% by China (up from 1.98% in 2012) and the US investment of 2.73% (up from 2.70% in 2012). Sources: Office for National Statistics, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

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