UNSW Sydney rockets into the global top 20 in the latest QS Rankings

27 Jun 2023
UNSW ranked as 19th in the world

The University has placed equal 19th with the University of Sydney in the global rankings, reinforcing the city’s reputation as a top global city for higher education. 

UNSW Sydney has moved up 26 spots in the 2024 QS World University Rankings to equal 19th alongside its crosstown counterpart the University of Sydney. The two universities are now ranked equal second in Australia.

The city of Sydney now boasts 10 per cent of the top 20 universities in the world, affirming the city’s reputation as a great global city for higher education. Of 38 Australian universities ranked, three (15 per cent) are in the global top 20, an extraordinary achievement for a nation of only 0.3 per cent of the world’s population.

“This result is a testament to the hard work and razor-sharp focus on excellence of the UNSW community. Having three NSW universities ranked among the world’s best, with UNSW and the University of Sydney at equal 19th place and UTS in the top 100, enhances our power to facilitate innovative, world-leading research and provide education that transforms lives,” said UNSW Sydney Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Attila Brungs.

“What I am most excited about is the opportunity this excellent result presents for us to amplify our societal impact and be at the forefront of positive change. Our position in the top echelon of global universities elevates our collective capacity to attract the world’s best researchers, educators and students, and stir the world’s best institutions to seek our partnership in addressing society’s greatest challenges.

“UNSW is in an ever-stronger position to drive our societal impact and be true catalysts of change – locally, in our region and around the world.”

The 20th edition of the QS Rankings features the world’s top 1500 universities from 104 locations. This year’s rankings saw the introduction of three new indicators reflective of wider trends in education and society and changing priorities of students, academics and employers around the world.

The three new indicators are Sustainability, Employment Outcomes and International Research Network.

UNSW performed exceptionally well in all three areas, ranking among the world’s top 25 for each and placing first in Australia for International Research Network (15th globally) and Employment Outcomes (25th globally).

The University’s strongest indicator was Sustainability, which ranks second in Australia and 10th globally. QS states that the component evaluates the social and environmental impact of universities as centres of education and research. This is a vital step towards supporting universities on their journeys towards helping create a more sustainable future.

Professor Nicholas Fisk, UNSW Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Research & Enterprise said UNSW and Australian universities benefitted from the inclusion of the three new metrics in the newly modernised QS ranking.

“It is reassuring to see UNSW’s outstanding performance across the three new indicators as this reflects the University’s acumen in recognising what our students, staff and communities consider important in higher education,” Professor Fisk said. “Australia has rocketed up the charts with three universities joining the top 20 for the first time, underscoring the impact of our collective research both locally and around the world.”

QS Senior Vice President Ben Sowter said: “The 2024 QS World University Rankings represents a major step in the evolution of the exercise, marking the most significant innovation in its methodological paradigm since its inception two decades ago. More than ever, it aligns with Gen Z and Alpha priorities, providing institutions with a unique lens through which to assess their performance in areas paramount to shaping a brighter future for generations to come.”

For the 12th year in a row, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) was once again named best in the world followed by the University of Cambridge.

You can see the full results on the 2024 QS Rankings page.

Join us in celebrating this momentous achievement by updating your emails with our new QS Rankings email signature. This can be accessed from the Brand Hub under Digital Templates > Email Signatures > 2024 QS Rankings.