Moving Up

LONDON, October 8, 2009 (AFP) – US and British universities dominate the top of a league table of universities worldwide published Thursday, but Asian seats of learning are moving up the global rankings. Harvard remains in top spot in the Times Higher Education (THE) league table, followed by Britain’s Cambridge University then Yale in third place, with London’s University College and Imperial College in fourth and fifth.

Oxford has slipped one to joint fifth, but the next 10 places are occupied by US universities, most of them Ivy League like Princeton and Columbia, but also including Chicago University.

But Asian universities, while still struggling to break into the top 20, are moving upwards, with numbers in the top 200 growing in Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea and Malaysia.

After the University of Tokyo in 22nd place come the University of Hong Kong in 24th, Japan’s Kyoto University in 25th, and the National University of Singapore in 30th.

Philip Altbach of Boston University says the Asian improvement is due to a number of factors.

“These countries have invested heavily in higher education in recent years, and this is reflected in the improved quality in their top in