Globalisation brings about rapid changes in all aspects of research and development, has a positive impact on international cooperation, but at the same time increases competition between universities.
Globalisation processes mean that universities want to be recognised in the world. This recognition is gained, among other things, through rankings. Although it is said that they are unreliable and unfair, they impact the image of universities and arouse growing interest among the general public.
More and more young people plan to study outside their own country, and international rankings are becoming a frequent tool to help them make a decision concerning the choice of university. They make it possible to compare universities with each other according to selected criteria.
Most popular rankings, especially those with a global reach, are based on quantitatively measurable indicators, each of which has a weight assigned to it and is taken into account in the overall rating. The second most common element is reputation survey which can be conducted among the academic staff, students or employers.
The most prestigious global rankings are:
- Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU),
- Times Higher Education World University Ranking (THE),
- QS World University Ranking (QS),
- US News Best Global Universities Rankings (US News).
The Academic Ranking of World Universities published since 2003 is considered to be the most recognizable one. It has become a symbol of the prestigious international ranking for higher education.