The ranking is based on thirteen indicators within five areas. Factors that weigh heavily are the evaluation surveys sent to teaching staff and researchers from other higher education institutions who list the fifteen most important universities, and the number of citations.
In total, there are around 17,000 higher education institutions in the world and of these, Times Higher Education ranks around 1,900 from 108 different countries.
Lund University’s ranking over the past five years has been as follows:
The universities’ operations are complex, and the commercial ranking institutes only measure some elements of their operations. The methodology can often be called into question. Ranking institutes change their methods of measuring often, without giving an account of what they have done. This is the primary reason for the placings changing from one year to the next. The actual differences can be very small, which can still result in large differences in placings.
Despite many universities being critical of these rankings, they do affect people’s perception and attitude to the universities. Positions in rankings are important, for example, for prospective students, doctoral students and collaboration partners (particularly international ones) when they are choosing higher education institution for whatever reason.