The University of Worcester is number one in the UK, and 26th globally, for Quality Education, according to the globally respected Times Higher Education, whose new rankings are published today.
Worcester has also been crowned number one in the UK, and joint 4th globally, for Gender Equality in the rankings.
Worcester’s top position was officially revealed when the Times Higher Education (THE) published its new rankings on the contribution made by universities around the world to achieving the internationally agreed Sustainable Development Goals, which the United Nations adopted in 2016.
Over 500 universities from 80 countries were meticulously and independently assessed by the THE and Worcester was ranked 33rd overall.
Factors assessed include: promoting good health and wellbeing; quality education; gender equality and economic growth; reducing inequalities; building sustainable cities and communities; and achieving responsible consumption and production.
Worcester was ranked 17th globally for Responsible Consumption and Production and is in the top 40 globally for Sustainable Cities and Communities, Decent Work and Economic Growth, as well as for Reduced Inequalities and Climate Action.
Professor David Green CBE, the University’s Vice Chancellor and Chief Executive, said: “We are delighted to learn that our work is so highly valued across so many categories. The University of Worcester has long been committed to combining a highly inclusive approach with educational excellence. So we are particularly delighted to be ranked number one in the UK and 26th globally for Quality Education, and number one in the UK and joint 4th globally for Gender Equality.”
Professor Green continued: “An important aspect of the University’s culture, expressed in successive strategic plans, has been to be responsible citizens of our precious planet and therefore to seek to be the change we want to become. I am very proud of the way our staff and students continually strive to work in partnership with others to advance educational and social benefit.”
“We have long promoted efficient energy use by a succession of projects; including installing low energy lighting throughout the University; efficient building design, installing solar hot water in halls of residence, and working on multiple behaviour change projects with staff and students in terms of recycling, sustainable transport, energy efficiency and even the promotion of ‘grow your own’ as well as encouraging walking, wheeling and cycling.. This work has led to us being awarded First Class Honours in the Universities and Colleges’ Green League each year for more than a decade as well as winning numerous awards for environmental sustainability.
“We are very strongly supportive of the United Nations and the globally agreed Sustainable Development Goals. Global warming is a reality. We need to act together now to avoid a climate disaster. We are deeply committed to playing a positive part in the great global movement which has seen the UN adopt these ambitious, most positive goals for the people of the planet.”
Universities from 80 countries are represented in the rankings, including in Japan, USA and Russia. The full rankings are available.
Ellie Bothwell, Rankings Editor at Times Higher Education, said: “The Times Higher Education University Impact Rankings analysed 551 universities from 80 different countries, based on 11 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, in order to measure the social and economic impact that institutions have on society. For the University of Worcester to be the outright best British university in both our Gender Equality and Quality Education categories represents a fantastic achievement, and its strong showing in many other areas gives its staff and students a great deal to be proud of.”
John Bateman, Chair of Governors at the University of Worcester, said: “This is a tremendous achievement for the University and all the staff and students who work so hard. In recent times, the University has rightly earned a reputation for its inclusive approach and these rankings further recognise the wonderful work at Worcester to ensure equality and quality is at the heart of everything we do.
“For many years Worcester has really led the way in thinking about its impact on the world, both in terms of reducing its environmental impact and increasing its beneficial impact in society, and I’m delighted to see this long-term commitment being acknowledged in this way.”
Messages of congratulations have already started to come in to the University:
“The University of Worcester has been a dynamo of opportunity for our City and a shining example of how universities can have a hugely beneficial impact on a community. I am delighted to see the valuable work of the University being recognised in these new rankings, which certainly back up what we've known for a long time, that Worcester is really leading the way in education and inclusion.”
Mark Stansfeld, Chair of Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership
“A part of education is helping people create themselves, thus we must honour all efforts in excellence in education. I congratulate and celebrate with the University of Worcester, ranked 26th worldwide for Quality Education. At the University of Worcester, both men and women are empowered to be strong and at the same time free to be sensitive. I believe for us to be ranked joint 4th worldwide for Gender Equality is a given. Thank you, the University of Worcester for increasing gender equity in the real world in and through education.”
Dr Swaroop Rawal, an alumna of Worcester, who recently made it into the top 10 of the Global Teacher Prize
“Congratulations to the University of Worcester for achieving such amazing results in the recent Global Impact ratings by the Times Higher. The recognition is very well deserved for David and the team who are paving the way for our future generations and delivering time after time on projects to attain such credibility.
“The University has contributed greatly to the city of Worcester, helping to transform the area into a vibrant and attractive place for young people to study, work and live. As a graduate of the University and resident of the city, I wholly support the University’s plans and ambitions for the future and would like to congratulate it once again.”
Sharon Smith, Chief Executive at Herefordshire & Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce
“It’s terrific to see institutions like our long-standing client the University of Worcester performing well in the new Global Impact Rankings. Projects such as the Hive and the University’s work on mental health have the potential to deliver long term, positive benefits for individuals and the local community. These rankings provide an important and timely focus on the broad social value of universities.”
Smita Jamdar, Partner and Head of Education at Shakespeare Martineau LLP