Schmidt Science Fellows and Times Higher Education launch Interdisciplinary Science Rankings

Schmidt Science Fellows and Times Higher Education launch Interdisciplinary Science Rankings.
November 16, 2023
ISR Rankings

Times Higher Education (THE) and Schmidt Science Fellows are announcing the launch of an innovative Interdisciplinary Science Ranking today, which will recognise, incentivise, and celebrate interdisciplinary science in higher education across the globe. 

The two organisations are keen for as many higher education institutions around the world to participate in the pioneering ranking, which will be released in late 2024, with data collection from universities beginning in January.  

THE and Schmidt Science Fellows collaborated earlier this year to engage with the university sector to understand the value of a ranking for interdisciplinary science and to develop effective metrics. Both organisations are committed to ongoing engagement with the sector to refine the approach and ensure higher education institutions around the world are able to participate.    

Universities worldwide are adopting interdisciplinary science approaches to boost innovation and to make breakthrough discoveries to help solve the world’s biggest challenges, which requires the skills and techniques from a broad range of scientific disciplines. 

The Interdisciplinary Science Ranking will provide the sector with data to measure and benchmark achievement in scientific research that crosses disciplinary boundaries by acknowledging and rewarding universities leading on interdisciplinary science. 

Universities will be able to use insights from the rankings to assess and develop their own approach to interdisciplinary science to facilitate a culture change in global science and drive high-impact research. 

Duncan Ross, THE’s Chief data officer, said:  

“The new and groundbreaking Interdisciplinary Science Ranking will enable universities to benchmark their interdisciplinary scientific work, which we hope will spur far greater collaboration in and between universities both locally and globally. 

“We hope the ranking’s impetus for greater collaboration will lead to many more scientific breakthroughs, which will significantly benefit people and the planet.” 

Dr Megan Kenna, Executive director of Schmidt Science Fellows, said:  

“Interdisciplinary science can allow us to think differently, tackle challenges from multiple perspectives, and accelerate discovery.   

“The commitment to a 2024 Interdisciplinary Science Ranking is an important milestone in convening a sector-wide dialogue with institutions to surface and showcase best practices in fostering academic ecosystems where interdisciplinary science can thrive. 

“Data analysis at this scale will also allow for better identification of collective challenges, sparking innovative thinking and creative new solutions to breaking down the barriers that exist to interdisciplinary science. 

“We are looking forward to working with universities across the world to further develop this tool and ensure it can play a positive role in strengthening the way we do science.” 

A year of exploratory analysis by THE and Schmidt Science Fellows resulted in the organisations releasing the ‘Interdisciplinary Science Ranking: preliminary analysis’ on 18 October. THE will now begin collecting a fresh round of data with the goal of publishing the first full ISR in autumn 2024.