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Rockefeller ranks first among global universities in several measures of scientific impact

In a new international comparison of universities, Rockefeller University dominates the rankings related to the impact of its research and the transfer of knowledge to the private sector. The rankings, released March 30 by the European Commission-funded U-Multirank survey, placed Rockefeller among the top five institutions in five key categories. Across the entire set of rankings, which incorporates data from 1,200 institutions, Rockefeller was the only institution to receive this many top slots.

U-Multirank grades institutions on 31 indicators across four categories and is the largest global university ranking, incorporating the most comprehensive information system, according to its creators.

Ranked alongside much larger institutions, including MIT and Harvard, Rockefeller received the top spot for the citation rate of publications by university researchers, the proportion of those publications that are highly cited, and the number of publications cited in patents. When the university’s size was taken into account, Rockefeller also received high honors for number of research publications and patents awarded.

“No matter how you slice the data, Rockefeller’s impact in the sciences is second to none,” says Marc Tessier-Lavigne, the university’s president. “The U-Multirank survey shows that our scientific output leads the world in several categories related to the impact of its publications and patents and competes favorably with institutions many times our size. The results confirm that our recipe for transformational science is uniquely effective, and that our faculty’s energy, creativity, and brilliance have made them undisputed international leaders in their fields.”

Another European-based international ranking system, the CWTS Leiden Ranking, which focuses solely on scientific impact, has also recognized Rockefeller for having the highest percentage of frequently cited scientific publications among 750 top universities worldwide.

U-Multirank originated with a call for a new way to compare universities internationally across a range of different activities. First launched in 2014 with information from 850 institutions, U-Multirank’s newest edition compares more than 1,200 institutions from 83 countries across five broad areas: teaching and learning, research, knowledge transfer, international orientation, and regional engagement.

The rankings can be accessed online using an interactive tool that can drill down into the underlying data, rather than relying on composite scores that blend potentially disparate metrics together. U-Multirank’s multidisciplinary approach is intended to provide a new tool for students, university leaders, and businesses to help drive decision-making.