It was bad news for business schools in Britain and Belgium in the 2014 Financial Times Masters in Management (MiM) ranking, with seven out of 11 British schools and three out of four Belgian schools dropping significantly – by seven places or more.

Bucking the trend was London Business School, which entered the ranking for the first time and immediately secured a position in the top 10, making it the highest-ranked UK business school.

The FT’s MiM ranking, now in its 10th year, features the top 70 management degrees for students with little or no previous work experience. St Gallen of Switzerland remains in the top slot for the fourth year running, with two Parisian business schools, HEC and Essec, ranked second and third respectively.

The FT MiM ranking is based on data collected from two surveys – one of the participating business schools and the other of their alumni who graduated three years ago (the class of 2011). The ranking is in part based on how successful alumni have been in their careers since graduation, as reflected in salary data.

Three years after graduation, the average annual salary of top-ranked St Gallen’s alumni, with an average age of 28, is almost $80,000. The Swiss programme scores highly on several additional indicators – it is the best value for money of all the programmes ranked, for example.

The two biggest climbers in the 2014 ranking were ESC Rennes in France and Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School at University College Dublin in Ireland, climbing 13 and 11 places respectively to rank 23rd and 45th.

In addition to London Business School, there are four other new entrants in the top 70 table: EBS Business School in Germany (14); Canada’s Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia (49); ESC La Rochelle in France (64); and China’s Tongji University School of Economics and Management (65).

The ranking remains dominated by European schools. Only six of the 70 ranked are from outside Europe, with Calcutta’s Indian Institute of Management the highest-ranked in 13th place, just ahead of its sister school in Ahmedabad, ranked 16th.

One of the most valuable components of many MiM degrees is the internship, which many students use as a stepping stone to a professional career. In total, 72 per cent of respondents to the FT survey completed an internship and nearly two-thirds of them (64 per cent) received a job offer as a result, with just over half again accepting such offers.

Internships are most popular in countries where the MiM is taught over two years or more. All students in Belgium, France and India complete at least one internship, for example. Programmes in Canada, Ireland or the UK are just one year in length and almost no students complete an internship.

About one in seven (14 per cent) graduates from the class of 2011 set up their own companies during their degree or have done so since graduation.

Data collected by the FT show that about 80 per cent of these companies are still operational and provide the primary source of income for 44 per cent of their founders. However, most of these start-ups are small, with fewer than 10 full-time employees.

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