The University of Queensland improves high global ranking

15 Aug 2013

The University of Queensland (UQ) has improved its position in the top 100 Academic Rankings of World Universities (ARWU) for 2013, announced today.

UQ achieved a place of 85th in the world, its best-ever performance in this ranking, and the third-highest by an Australian institution in 2013.

UQ’s international rankings in the Life and Agriculture Science field also improved, rising from 45 to be ranked at 40 internationally

UQ maintained its top-100 positions in clinical medicine and pharmacy (51-75 band) and engineering/technology and computer engineering (76-100 band).

UQ President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Høj said UQ’s progress was a resounding endorsement of the quality of its researchers.

“This result reaffirms that UQ’s researchers are among the world’s best, and it reflects their determination to use their knowledge to benefit humankind,” Professor Høj said.

Published annually since 2003, the ARWU is a widely-referenced and influential ranking of the world's research universities. It ranks more than 1000 universities, with the top 500 published at

It is compiled using objective indicators including:

• number of alumni and staff winning Nobel Prizes and Fields Medals
• number of highly cited researchers selected by Thomson Scientific
• number of articles published in journals of Nature and Science
• number of articles indexed in Science Citation Index - Expanded and Social Sciences Citation Index
• per capita performance with respect to the size of an institution.

Professor Høj said large public investments in research and higher education in some of Australia’s neighbouring economies made it increasingly challenging for Australian universities to excel in global rankings.

“It takes a great deal of work and focus for Australian universities to defend our positions, let alone improve our rankings.

“Collectively, our performance brings esteem not only to Australian higher education, but also to the nation as a whole.

“The ARWU result carries an important message for all sides in the election campaign, that universities have formidable potential to continue raising Australia’s global stocks, particularly if universities are backed by strategic policies and investments.

“For UQ, the rankings reflect on the opportunities we can give to students, and speak to the quality of UQ graduates.”

The ARWU release followed announcements that a start-up company built on UQ research had secured a research and development collaboration with a global pharmaceutical company.

“This may lead to benefits for rheumatoid arthritis patients worldwide, and is the type of outcomes-oriented excellence that UQ’s rankings signify,” Professor Høj said.

The 2013 ARWU table corroborates other global indices that rank UQ in the top one per cent of universities globally, as well as in particular fields.

They include the QS World University Rankings 2012-2013 (UQ 46); Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2012-2013 (rank 65); and 2012 Performance Ranking of Scientific Papers for World Universities (rank 72).

Media: Carolyn Varley, UQ Communications, or 07 3365 1120.