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Tuesday, September 15, 2015, 21:12

HKUST is now Hong Kong's best

By Timothy Chui /

HONG KONG - Papers published by professors can affect their universities' rankings and this is what has unseated the city's two best varsities propelling Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) to the top of the list.

UK-based QS World University Rankings placed HKUST first in its latest list of top schools in Hong Kong. It leapfrogged from the 40th to 28th place this year while the University of Hong Kong came 30th in the global rankings.

The two were the only institutions of higher learning in the city to make the top-50 global list, with Chinese University of Hong Kong slipping from 46th to 51st position.

School ratings are based on academic reputation, employer reputation, student-to-faculty ratio, international student and faculty ratios as well as citations per faculty member.

HKUST is now Hong Kong's best
This undated picture shows a library in the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. (Provided to China Daily)

The seismic shift in local rankings was owing to changes in how citations per faculty were weighted, with more weightage given to engineering, social sciences and technology over a traditional bias for life sciences and medicine papers.

With regional competitors Japan, Singapore and South Korea also having two native schools apiece in the top 50, Hong Kong’s schools remain resiliently competitive globally. It has the advantages of geographical location - within reach of most of Asia - as well as a continued tradition of publishing in English and intra-disciplinary cooperation.

Among the top 200, a total of 49 institutions are from the US and 30 from Britain.

Seven Chinese mainland universities are among the top 200, with Tsinghua University at 25th, Peking University at 41st, Fudan University at 51st, Shanghai Jiao Tong University at 70th, Zhejiang University at 110th, University of Science and Technology of China at 113th, and Nanjing University at 130th.

(With agency input)

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