When selecting a university, it's easy to be captivated by the prestigious and long-standing institutions that have dominated the upper ranks of the Times Higher Education World University Rankings for centuries. Names like Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, and Princeton immediately emerge.
However, it's crucial to recognize the multitude of other universities that also warrant attention. The 2023 Young University Rankings by THE (Times Higher Education) reveal the most outstanding universities under 50 years old, assessing them across teaching, research, international outlook, and industry collaboration. Interestingly, the ranking methodology mirrors that of THE World University Rankings but with recalibrated weightings to align with the missions of younger academic institutions.
In addition to the comprehensive ranking of the top 400+ universities under 50, THE has developed a subset ranking specifically for universities established between 2000 and the present day, often referred to as millennials. So, the top 10 Young Universities in the World in 2023 are listed and briefly explained below.
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong
Retaining its top position from the previous year, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) has consistently ranked among the best universities in Hong Kong. As the name implies, HKUST places great emphasis on delivering high-quality education in science and technology. Established in 1991, it has been awarded five prestigious State Science and Technology Awards by the State Council of the People's Republic of China in 2011.
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
Not only does Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, secure the second spot among universities under 50 years old, but it also stands as one of the highest-ranked Asian universities in THE World University Rankings, celebrated for its breathtaking campus regarded as one of the World's most beautiful. Located in Jurong, Singapore's medical district, the university accommodates a diverse student body of 25,000 individuals from over 100 nations. NTU boasts strong partnerships with esteemed universities worldwide, including Imperial College London, Stanford University, and Peking University.
Paris Sciences et Lettres – PSL Research University Paris, France
Established in 2010, Paris Sciences et Lettres – PSL Research University Paris is a collegiate university initially comprising five institutions. Still, it has expanded to include 25 self-governing academic and research institutions. Its primary sites are located in the Latin Quarter of Paris. PSL aspires to become one of the World's leading research universities, actively working towards boosting France's research output and strengthening its position in the global higher education sector. The university has forged strategic partnerships with notable institutions such as New York University, the University of Cambridge, Tsinghua University, and the Technion Israel Institute of Technology.
Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies – Pisa, Italy
Specializing in applied sciences, the Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies is a small yet esteemed university in Italy. Established in 1987, the university follows a rigorous admissions process, expecting prospective students to demonstrate proficiency in two foreign languages and excel in the institution's admissions exam. Sant'Anna offers a range of courses from undergraduate to postgraduate level and houses numerous research institutes and laboratories.
Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), South Korea
Since its establishment in 1971, the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) has emerged as a leading institution in South Korea. KAIST operates two significant campuses in Daejeon and Seoul, the capital city of South Korea. Its academic offerings span six colleges and two schools, encompassing over 33 divisions. The university has fostered partnerships with numerous international institutions in the United States, the United Kingdom, Denmark, Germany, and various other countries.
Maastricht University, Netherlands
Established in 1976, Maastricht University in the Netherlands offers a distinctive approach to education. It prides itself on promoting problem-based learning and encouraging students to participate in their academic journey actively. With a focus on interdisciplinary collaboration and an international outlook, Maastricht University cultivates a diverse and inclusive learning environment.
City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
The City University of Hong Kong, founded in 1984, is a prominent institution in the bustling city. With its commitment to excellence in research and education, the university has garnered recognition for its innovative programs and impactful contributions to various fields. Embracing a forward-thinking approach, the City University of Hong Kong fosters an entrepreneurial spirit and nurtures the next generation of leaders and visionaries.
Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH), South Korea
Since its establishment in 1986, the Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH) has become a leading academic institution in South Korea. Renowned for its cutting-edge research and technological advancements, POSTECH offers various programs in science, engineering, and related disciplines. With a strong emphasis on fostering creativity and innovation, POSTECH provides students a transformative educational experience.
Sorbonne University, France
2018 Sorbonne University was formed due to the merger between several prestigious institutions in Paris. Building upon the rich legacy of the historic Sorbonne, the university has established itself as a hub of intellectual excellence and academic rigour. With a diverse range of disciplines spanning humanities, sciences, and social sciences, Sorbonne University offers students a comprehensive and interdisciplinary education.
Pompeu Fabra University, Spain
Founded in 1990, Pompeu Fabra University in Spain has quickly gained recognition for its commitment to quality education and research. Situated in the vibrant city of Barcelona, the university combines tradition with innovation, offering a dynamic learning environment for its students. Focusing on social sciences, humanities, and health sciences, Pompeu Fabra University equips graduates with the knowledge and skills necessary to thrive in their chosen fields.
How are these universities ranked?
The universities are ranked based on the 2023 Young University Rankings by THE (Times Higher Education), which assesses them across teaching, research, international outlook, and industry collaboration. The ranking methodology is similar to THE World University Rankings but with adjusted weightings to align with the missions of younger academic institutions.
What makes the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) stand out?
HKUST is known for its emphasis on delivering high-quality education in science and technology. It has consistently ranked among the best universities in Hong Kong and has been awarded five prestigious State Science and Technology Awards by the State Council of China.
Why is Nanyang Technological University (NTU) notable?
NTU secures a high position among universities under 50 years old and stands as one of the highest-ranked Asian universities in THE World University Rankings. It is celebrated for its beautiful campus and has strong partnerships with esteemed universities worldwide.
What is unique about Paris Sciences et Lettres – PSL Research University Paris?
PSL Research University Paris is a collegiate university in France that aims to become one of the World's leading research universities. It has strategic partnerships with notable institutions globally and is actively working to boost France's research output.