The ShanghaiRanking Consultancy, a world leader in developing university rankings based on trusted, high-quality data since 2003, has identified top-performing institutions in five broad subjects and 52 fields. The analysis relies exclusively on data from InCites, an integrated web-based platform powered by the Web of Science from Clarivate Analytics.
U.S. universities captured 32 top spots among the 52 fields surveyed. Chinese universities ranked first in eight fields. Among individual institutions, Harvard University earned 15 blue ribbons while its near neighbor MIT came second, with five first-place showings, four in engineering fields and in physics. The 52 fields are new this year, and are subsumed under five broad areas including natural sciences, engineering, life sciences, medical sciences, and social sciences. Only the five broad areas were analyzed in previous years.
“By using the InCites metrics from Web of Science, alongside our own award and reputational data for our field rankings, we were able to rank more than 4,000 global universities by academic subject,” said Dr. Ying Cheng, Managing Director of the ShanghaiRanking Consultancy. These different indicators – quantitative and qualitative, objective and subjective – are logically related and may be considered converging partial indicators that when combined provide robust and reliable evidence of research influence and standing.
Just as researchers turn to the Web of Science data as the gold-standard source for search and discovery, so too administrators and funders look to InCites data and tools for reliable analysis of research performance and benchmarking. And they do so to uncover institutional achievement that might be hidden if one were to rely only on subjective assessment or reputation alone, which is a lagging indicator. For example, in the new Global Ranking by Academic Subjects, Tongji University ranked first in civil engineering, University of Wageningen came out on top in agriculture, and Ghent University took first place in veterinary medicine. In other words, not every field is dominated by a Harvard, Oxford, or Stanford. These results demonstrate the depth and global reach of the InCites data that reveal research excellence wherever it may be found.
The ShanghaiRanking Consultancy’s exclusive reliance on InCites data is not unique. Reuters has chosen InCites as the basis for its Rankings of the Most Innovative Universities, and U.S. News and World Report has done likewise for its annual survey of Best Global Universities. That these leading news organizations selected Clarivate Analytics as their sole data provider speaks to a great confidence in the carefully curated sources and analytical tools included in both the Web of Science and in InCites.