Monday 13 July, 2020

UWI ranked in top 5 percent of best universities worldwide

One of the Caribbean’s main universities has for the first time ever, entered the five percent bracket of the 2019 Times Higher Education World University Rankings.

The University of the West Indies (The UWI) made it into the ranking among the elite band of top institutions worldwide based on data showing that there are over 25,000 recognised universities, globally.

The UWI ranked 591 in the world for 2019 out of the 1,258 universities which made the list and is the only Caribbean institution on the worldwide list. It was also the only Caribbean university ranked earlier this year in THE’s 2018 Latin America University Rankings, in the region that is home to over 100 universities contributing to sustainable development. 

Regarded as the definitive list of the top universities, THE’s World University Rankings is the only global university performance table to judge research-intensive universities across their core missions of teaching (the learning environment); research (volume, income and reputation), international outlook (staff, students and research); citations (research influence); industry income (knowledge transfer). The 70-year-old regional university, which is relatively young among its counterparts in the World Rankings, scored in the top 10% of universities (#290) for its international outlook and in the top 30% (#370) for research influence.

Elated about the news, Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir Hilary Beckles said, “The excellence of The UWI has been a well-kept secret for far too long. Now, with these very impressive global ranking results, we can begin to share with the world the story of this academic enterprise in the West Indies that highlights the intellectual achievement and scholastic contributions of the Caribbean community.”

In 2015, Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir Hilary Beckles took over the reins and declared an intention to radically globalise the University and to prepare it for regional and global comparisons within the THE’s rankings. This required considerable mobilising of the evidence relevant to its academic legacy and current strategic agenda as a strategic project. Vice-Chancellor Beckles, in establishing an Office for Global Affairs, and giving a remit to the redesigned Office of Strategic Planning, recognised the need for The UWI to be competitive internationally within a global sector.  The Vice-Chancellor’s vision to have The UWI recognised within the top five% of the best universities in the world has now been realised. 

The UWI’s exceptional performance in the 2018 Latin America University Rankings and now the 2019 World University Rankings demonstrates a series of deliberate strategic initiatives advanced by the implementation of the University’s five-year strategic plan for 2017-2022. Themed the Triple A Strategy, the plan is centred around widening Access to quality tertiary education, greater Alignment of The UWI with academic-industry partnerships relevant to the region's needs and Agility and alertness in engaging global connections and possibilities.


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