An Overview of European MBA Rankings

Check out this overview of the major European MBA rankings which may also help you decide how to approach different publications.

An Overview of European MBA Rankings

MBA rankings aim to compare MBA programs by translating their relative quality into a quantitative measure. The most respected rankings are those of The Financial Times, Forbes magazine, The Economist, Business Week, The Wall Street Journal and US News & World Report. The majority of rankings incorporate a combination of objective and subjective factors. These include but are not limited to: Selectivity, Incoming standardized test scores, Diversity, Class size, Student satisfaction, Student retention, Student resources, Academic quality, Alumni responses, Recruiter experiences, Career placement statistics, Post-graduation salary statistics. However, every publication and organisation uses different criteria to rank schools. Some rely on a combination of surveys and statistical indicators. Others rely on surveys alone.

Our advice is to study the methodology of rankings carefully in order to find out what exactly stands behind the numbers. Don’t rely on lists that don’t disclose information about their methodology. The difference between the positions of schools in the rankings depends on what indicators the different media consider most important for evaluating them. However, you should ask yourself if these match your own criteria.  A good attestation of the quality of a school is its ability to remain relatively stable in the rankings top 10, top 20, top 30, etc. All MBA programmes in the first top 100 are very good, provided that they were there in previous periods. Always compare the standing of a school in the last ranking with its position in the previous ones. Too high a volatility could be due to a sudden change in the answers provided by alumni, employers and schools but also to other factors. Over the years there have been some cases of shooting stars – schools that appear in good positions, only to sink without a trace over the next couple of years.

Financial Times Rankings

MBA graduate salaries and pay-packet increase post-MBA comprise 40 percent of the ranking for the schools in the Financial Times rankings. The rankings take into account three years of professional experience of former MBA students. The other twenty components measured concern business school diversity and international reach, the MBA programme and research capabilities.

European Business School Rankings 2012:
http://rankings.ft.com/businessschoolrankings/european-business-school-rankings-2012

Global MBA Rankings 2013:
http://rankings.ft.com/businessschoolrankings/global-mba-ranking-2013

EMBA Ranking 2012:
http://rankings.ft.com/businessschoolrankings/emba-ranking-2012

Online MBA Listing 2013:
http://rankings.ft.com/businessschoolrankings/online-mba-listing-2013

The Economist Rankings

The Economist’s business school ranking methodology comprises four components: new career opportunities account for 35 percent of the overall result, personal development and education experience 35 percent, increase in salary 20 percent, and networking potential 10 percent. 

Europe Ranking:
http://www.economist.com/whichmba/2010/europe-ranking 

2012 Full-time MBA Ranking:
http://www.economist.com/whichmba/full-time-mba-ranking

Executive MBA Ranking:
http://www.economist.com/whichmba/executive-mba-ranking

Forbes Rankings

Forbes has three rankings: US schools, non-US one-year schools and non-US two-year schools. Its methodology is based entirely on ROI and examines the last five years of graduates.

The Best International Business Schools:
http://www.forbes.com/sites/kurtbadenhausen/2011/08/10/the-best-international-business-schools/

BusinessWeek Rankings

BusinessWeek’s rankings are based on the opinions of students and corporate recruiters, each representing 45 percent of the final result. The remaining 10 percent is represented by intellectual capital: publications from the schools’ faculties in reputable academic journals.

International Full-time MBA Programmes:
http://www.businessweek.com/bschools/rankings/international

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