The Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), also known as the Shanghai Ranking, is one of the three most influential university rankings in the world. It was first compiled in 2003 by Jiao Tong University in Shanghai, but in 2009, a separate company, Shanghai Ranking Consultancy, was founded and the rankings are now organisationally independent. The list focuses on the performance of universities purely in science and research. More than 2,500 institutions were assessed in the current ARWU rankings, but only the top 1,000 made the list.
Masaryk University first appeared in the ARWU rankings in 2017, and last year it recorded a historic success when it moved up by around 200 places. According to the latest results, it ranks in the 401st-500th best universities in the world. Together with Charles University in Prague, MU is the only representative in the TOP 500 from the Czech Republic.
“I was delighted to hear that, after being ranked as the 400th highest ranked university in the world in the QS World University Rankings, we have also maintained our position in the Shanghai ARWU for the first time in our institution’s history. Keeping our place among the top five hundred universities in this ranking fills me with hope that our faculties and institutes of higher education are doing good work and there is real strength in our unity of effort,” said Martin Bareš, Rector of Masaryk University.
ARWU uses six indicators to rank universities around the globe. These include the number of articles published in Nature and Science, and citation responses to publications. It also tracks the number of scientists in the Highly Cited Researchers database, the number of Nobel Prize and Fields Medal winners associated with the institution, and the academic performance of the university adjusted for the number of staff.
This year’s MU ranking is based on good performance in four indicators, namely the number of publications in Nature and Science, where MU scored even higher than a year ago, the number of publications indexed in Web of Science, the scientific output per academic staff member and the presence on the list of highly cited researchers.
The ARWU rankings have traditionally been led by Harvard University, which has topped the list for the twenty-first consecutive year. The highest-ranked British university is the University of Cambridge in fourth place. Masaryk University is the second highest ranked university in the Czech Republic, which has a total of six universities in the TOP 1000.