7 Ways to Improve University Rankings in the EECA Region

EECA University Rankings

For universities that are featured in this year’s QS University Rankings: Emerging Europe and Central Asia (EECA), many have never appeared in any international or regional rankings before. As the EECA region is still developing its higher education systems, a lot of earlier priorities that did not align with becoming internationally recognized universities are still in place.

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It may also be of interest to you, that our QS World University Rankings for 2018 have been released! 

Discover the world’s top universities. Find out how Universities are ranked per subject. What regions and universities have climbed this year’s rankings and what well-established country for higher education has had the majority of its institutions fall down our list?  


With Russia’s recent bout of determination to feature five universities in the global top 100, the region is transforming and increasingly gaining recognition for its efforts. In order for other countries to follow suit and start to climb the world university rankings, here are 7 areas for nascent and developing universities to focus on:

1 – Collaboration and engagement will help improve university rankings

As with all of the QS university rankings, a significant proportion of the EECA ranking weighting comes from how a university is perceived — by its academic reputation, employer reputation or the number of citations of the research it has produced. Therefore it makes sense that in order to improve your university ranking, you need to start building a stronger reputation for your university brand. Collaborating with other institutions and engaging with those working within the industry is a vital way to expose your university to some much-needed international attention.

2 – Produce papers in English

The language barrier can present a restriction to the success of EECA universities. Without research and papers being published in English — or at the very least an abstract published in English — there are far fewer academics who will be able to read them, much less cite them in their own research. This will have a significant impact on a university’s international reputation and ranking.

3 – Offer more courses in English

By the same rights, increasing the number of courses that your university offers in English — especially if you currently don’t offer any — could ultimately significantly improve your university ranking. The number of international students and international staff would both be likely to increase dramatically, boosting performance on the ‘internationalization’ indicators of the rankings, while also feeding into your global reputation.

4 – Attend international conferences

Whether your university is collaborating internationally or not, attending international conferences is a great way to get your university name out there. Not only is it an opportunity to learn from other universities around the world in regards to academic research, marketing, and recruitment, conferences are a sure-fire way to create international connections and foster relationships that could lead to eventual collaboration.

5 – Develop your university brand

In order to increase your university ranking and draw in more international students, you need a well-established brand identity. This could include simple things such as making sure your university website is live and up to date with relevant and correct information. In order to improve your international standing as a reputable university, you must first establish your university brand as recognizable.

6 – Create industry connections

These can be connections within your university’s field of academic research or local businesses and companies in the area. Creating lasting connections with other organizations will help to encourage more academic collaboration, which will in turn help to improve your university’s academic reputation. It will also improve your employer reputation — a significant indicator in the world university rankings — which will help more of your students to find employment after they graduate.

7 – Hire international staff

In the effort to make your university courses more accessible to international students, hiring international staff is a great first step that will show your commitment to this, as well as facilitating the transition to more English-taught courses. The good news is that, as relatively few international staff are working in many universities in the EECA region, even bringing on a few new faculty members each year could significantly improve performance in this indicator.

You see the rankings in full here and remember to follow us on Twitter for more higher education insights.

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