The annual Financial Times Ranking of global MBA programs is out! If the 17th year of the ranking was surprising, with INSEAD finishing at #1 ahead of the likes of Wharton, Harvard, Stanford and home town favourite London Business School, the 18th year of the ranking sees INSEAD consolidating its #1 ranking, for the second consecutive time.

Financial Times Global MBA Rankings 2017

Rank in 2017 Rank in 2016 School name Country
1 1 Insead France / Singapore
2 5 Stanford Graduate School of Business US
3 4 University of Pennsylvania: Wharton US
4 2 Harvard Business School US
5 10 University of Cambridge: Judge UK
6 3 London Business School UK
7 6 Columbia Business School US
8 12 IE Business School Spain
9 8 University of Chicago: Booth US
10 16 Iese Business School Spain
11 17 Ceibs China
12 11 Northwestern University: Kellogg US
13 9 MIT: Sloan US
13 7 University of California at Berkeley: Haas US
15 14 HKUST Business School China
15 18 Yale School of Management US
17 23 Esade Business School Spain
18 22 Dartmouth College: Tuck US
19 19 New York University: Stern US
20 15 HEC Paris France

Highlights of Financial Times Ranking

  • Financial Times RankingINSEAD continues to be at the top of the 2017 Financial Times Ranking of the best 100 programs for two years now, after claiming it for the last time last year. Claiming this year’s top spot again shows that INSEAD’s emergence is not a one-time fluke in a highly influential ranking that is closely watched in Europe and Asia.
  • Interestingly, all other Top 10 spots apart from INSEAD have seen major changes.
  • For the first time, Indian School of Business has moved ahead of IIM Ahmedabad to become the #1 B-school in India, finishing at #27 worldwide (joint rank with Cornell).
  • Stanford Graduate School of Business claimed the #2 spot moving ahead of Wharton (#3) and Harvard Business School (#4).
  • Cambridge’s Judge Business School jumped five places this year and 21 places in the past five years to gain its #5 ranking. This is also the first occasion that London Business School (#6) is not the top-placed UK school in the MBA ranking.
  • MIT Sloan School of Management falls to #13. This is the first time in 10 years that it has been outside the top 10!
  • A trio of schools in the top 25 each gained six places to finish substantially higher this year: IESE Business School in Spain rose to #101 from #16, CEIBS in Shanghai, China, jumped to #11 from #17, and ESADE in Spain improved to #17 from #23.
  • This year, 2 of the top 10 B-schools are from Spain – apart from IESE at #10, IE B-school rose to #8.
  • Switzerland-based IMD lost the most ground, dropping eight places to #21 from #13 last year.
  • IIM Bangalore’s EPGP comes in at #49, a substantial jump from its #62 rank last year.
  • Failing to win a top ten rank were a group of world class business schools that have long dominated the top of most rankings. They include #11 Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, MIT Sloan and UC-Berkeley’s Haas School, both tied at 13th, #15 Yale School of Management, #18 Dartmouth College’s Tuck School of Business, and #19 NYU’s Stern School.
  • Despite the fall of the above mentioned heavyweights, US schools have a very credible showing in this year’s ranking, with 51 out of the top 100 MBA programmes belonging to US universities. Six of the eight new or returning schools are from the US.
  • Rutgers Business School in New Jersey is the highest new entrant at #70. WP Carey School of Business at Arizona State University is the highest returning school at #57.
  • Australian schools are doing well. Sydney’s Macquarie Graduate School of Management is Australia’s top placed institution at #49.


Financial Times Ranking: Methodology

  • FT surveys alumni three years after graduation so the programs need to be at least four years old.
  • To qualify for the ranking, FT also requires that a minimum of 20% of a school’s alumni reply to the Financial Times Ranking survey, with at least 20 fully completed responses.
  • Participating programs must have a minimum of 30 graduates each year to be considered.
  • Alumni responses inform eight criteria that together contribute 59% of the ranking’s weight. The first two reflect alumni incomes three years after graduation. The salaries of non-profit and public sector workers and full-time students are removed. Remaining salaries are converted to US dollars using October 2015 International Monetary Fund purchasing power parity rates.
  • An average is calculated for each school and this figure, “weighted salary”, carries 20% of the ranking’s marks.
  • FT data from the past three years is used for alumni-informed criteria. Responses from the 2016 survey carry 50% of total weight and those from 2015 and 2014, 25% each. Excluding salary criteria, if only two years of data are available, the weighting is split 60:40 if data are from 2016 and 2015, or 70:30 if they are from 2016 and 2014. For salary figures, the weighting is 50:50 for two years’ data.
  • Eleven criteria are calculated from school data, accounting for 31% of the final ranking. These measure the diversity of staff, board members, students by gender, nationality and the MBA’s international reach. For gender criteria, schools with a 50:50 composition score highest.

The detailed ranking and ranking methodology can be found here.


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