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The regional tables derived from this year’s Financial Times rankings tell three stories.

● In the US it is a story of salaries: the determining factors in the US ranking are salaries and salary increases experienced three years after graduation. Unlike counterparts elsewhere, US schools tend to have few international faculty or students.

As has become traditional in the Financial Times rankings, Harvard leads the salary table. Alumni from the school earn an average $162,107 three years after graduation (weighted over three years). Alumni from Yale have the highest percentage salary increase at 174 per cent (again, weighted over three years).

This year 58 schools make the rankings, compared with 57 last year. The top 10, from Harvard and Wharton to MIT are, predictably, the big brand-name schools. In the next tier, Michigan fared particularly well, moving up eight in the US and 14 in the world.

This year five US schools entered the table. Eight US schools did not have an adequate alumni response rate to be included in the top 100 ranking this year. The Kelley school at Indiana University chose not to participate in the ranking this year and submitted no school data, so it could not be ranked.

● In Europe it is a story of research: one of the big winners in Europe this year was Lancaster, which scores particularly highly on the FT doctoral ranking. This is a category in which European schools – UK schools in particular – do well. Four European schools are in the top 10 in the world in this category.

However, although the schools produce large numbers of PhD graduates they do not fare well in the FT research ranking – an indicator of which faculty are publishing in international academic and practitioner journals.

Only one school, Insead, ranks in the top 10 global business schools for research. Just three schools, Insead, London Business School and the Said school at Oxford University, achieve higher scores in the research rating than the PhD rating. These are also the three highest placed schools in research in Europe.

This year 26 European schools were ranked in the top 100 table, compared with 28 last year. Of those, 14 are in the UK, three in France, three in Spain and two in Ireland. Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands and Switzerland are all represented by one school.

● In Canada it is a story of value for money: three out of seven of the Canadian schools rank in the top 10 in the world in this criteria.

What is also noticeable in Canada is the salary levels for the alumni. A total of 13 Canadian schools participated in the ranking, though six did not make it into the final table. The alumni from these 13 schools report that three years after graduation, on average, they earn about $80,000.

The shining beacon in salaries in Canada is the Ivey school at the University of Western Ontario. Alumni there earn more than $100,000 (weighted over three years). Although 28 US schools and 10 European ones have alumni who report salaries of more than $100,000, Ivey is the only Canadian school that has achieved this.

The Rotman school at the University of Toronto has appointed a cadre of highly qualified faculty over the past few years, and as a result ranks top in Canada for research output. It also tops the Canadian table for the FT doctoral rating, which assesses the number of doctoral students who graduate and who go on to teach at top business schools.

Where Schulich scores highly is in value for money, salary percentage increase and the career progress of its alumni. These indicate the school caters for younger, less-qualified managers than Ivey or Rotman.

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