The Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Bangalore and Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay have made it to the top 30 in the recently published Times Higher Education BRICS & Emerging Economies Rankings 2016, with 16 Indian universities figuring in the top 200 universities.
Among the BRICS nations of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, China has emerged as the most promising country with 39 of its universities making it to the list of top 200, followed by Russia with 24 and India with 16.
The IISc has been ranked number 16 and IIT-Bombay at 29 in the list that has China’s Peking University in the top position followed by Tsinghua University in the second and Lomonosov Moscow State University of Russian Federation in the third.
IIT-Madras and IIT-Delhi have been ranked 36th and 37th, respectively, followed by IIT-Kharagpur in the 45th spot, and IIT Roorkee in the 48th position.
President Pranab Mukherjee while speaking at the launch of the rankings at Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi said the rankings are an acknowledgment of the potential which exists in the higher education sector in these five countries.
“Over and above a focused attention on cutting-edge research and an international orientation, world-class universities must possess other enviable features. Some of them, to my mind, are high-quality faculty members, meritorious students, an encouraging teaching-learning environment, a high level of resource availability, sound infrastructure, and existence of considerable autonomy and robust governance structure,” Mukherjee said.
Expressing his concerns over the parameters of global rankings, he said at times global rankings do not reflect the ground realities and socio-political conditions prevalent in various countries and so they adopt their own ranking mechanism with parameters more suited to the domestic setting.
“In the case of India, a National Institutional Ranking Framework has been developed recently to evaluate educational institutions. The National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) also operates in familiar territory, assessing and accrediting institutions of higher education in our country,” the President said.
“I believe these national counterparts of the international rankings system will only reinforce and concretise the push towards accountability and quality in educational institutions. At the same time, they will inspire better performance of institutions leading to improved international rankings.”
Speaking to HT Education, on whether a domestic ranking model would help India produce world-class institutions, Phil Baty, editor at large, Times Higher Education World University Rankings, said it is a positive idea as it created accountability for institutes and promoted a culture of maintaining data and monitoring progress.
“However, the institutes should not lose the global focus in the process and should not focus on just competing with the regional institutes but the institutes globally and should use the domestic rankings as a stepping stone to the global rankings,” Baty said.
He also emphasised on the government’s need to invest more funds on education institutions so that they can attract renowned academics as faculty, create better infrastructure and get huge research grants.