, Volume 85, Issue 1, pp 243–256 | Cite as

Comparing university rankings

  • Isidro F. AguilloEmail author
  • Judit Bar-Ilan
  • Mark Levene
  • José Luis Ortega


Recently there is increasing interest in university rankings. Annual rankings of world universities are published by QS for the Times Higher Education Supplement, the Shanghai Jiao Tong University, the Higher Education and Accreditation Council of Taiwan and rankings based on Web visibility by the Cybermetrics Lab at CSIC. In this paper we compare the rankings using a set of similarity measures. For the rankings that are being published for a number of years we also examine longitudinal patterns. The rankings limited to European universities are compared to the ranking of the Centre for Science and Technology Studies at Leiden University. The findings show that there are reasonable similarities between the rankings, even though each applies a different methodology. The biggest differences are between the rankings provided by the QS-Times Higher Education Supplement and the Ranking Web of the CSIC Cybermetrics Lab. The highest similarities were observed between the Taiwanese and the Leiden rankings from European universities. Overall the similarities are increased when the comparison is limited to the European universities.


Ranking Universities Shanghai ranking Times ranking Taiwan ranking Leiden ranking Webometrics ranking Comparative analysis 


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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Isidro F. Aguillo
    • 1
    Email author
  • Judit Bar-Ilan
    • 2
  • Mark Levene
    • 3
  • José Luis Ortega
    • 4
  1. 1.Cybermetrics LabCCHS – CSICMadridSpain
  2. 2.Department of Information ScienceBar-Ilan UniversityRamat GanIsrael
  3. 3.School of Computer Science and Information SystemsBirkbeck University of LondonLondonUK
  4. 4.Scientific Programming DivisionVICYT – CSICMadridSpain

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