Best universities for business degrees 2019

Find the best universities for business degrees using Times Higher Education’s World University Rankings data

October 17 2018
Business chart

Studying a business degree, whether at an undergraduate or postgraduate level, is a common first step into a range of vocations.

Where to study business is an important decision for prospective students, so Times Higher Education has published a world ranking of business and economics degrees.

The subject ranking for business includes more than 500 universities in 62 countries.


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The majority of the top 20 universities in the business ranking are US colleges, with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Stanford University at the top.

Although the US dominates the ranking, universities in the UK and across Asia also do particularly well.

The UK has four universities in the top 20 as well as two Asian institutions. 

Canadian, Dutch and Australian schools also perform well for business and economics degrees.

The ranking uses the same methodology as the World University Rankings, but with slightly more weight given to teaching and research metrics and slightly less to citations. The full methodology can be found here

Scroll down for a full list of degrees covered by the ranking and the career paths that they open up. 


Best universities worldwide

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Top 5 universities for business and economics degrees

1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

The Sloan School of Management, also known as MIT Sloan, offers business programmes at the university.

In addition to MBA courses, executive training programmes and other postgraduate degrees, the school also teaches undergraduates through “Course 15”, which provides business skills to students with a technical and quantitative background.

The classes feature problem sets that make use of real-world business cases, approaching them with scientific methodology. The course also provides opportunities to do research and take part in entrepreneurship competitions.

Business courses at MIT cover a variety of topics, including operations research, consulting, entrepreneurship, finance, information technology, product development and marketing.

There is an emphasis on innovation across all these topics. Many influential new ideas in business, including the field of system dynamics, were born out of work at the Sloan School.

MIT is one of the most prestigious universities in the world. Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, next door to Harvard, it is a hub of innovation and entrepreneurship.

2. Stanford University

Stanford’s graduate business school admits students for MBA, PhD, master’s and executive degrees.

The school’s dean is Jonathan Levin, a renowned expert in industrial organisation.

In 2006, the school received what was then the largest endowment ever given to a business school: $105 million from Phil Knight, an alumnus and the founder of Nike.

The business school at Stanford is known to be the most selective in the US, based on the competition for acceptance on to a course. Typically, less than 7 per cent of applicants secure a place.

Postgraduate students can also take joint degrees at other schools, combining business with subjects such as earth sciences, education and law.

Although there is no specific business and management programme for undergraduates, students can choose to major in economics, international relations or management science and engineering.

3. University of Oxford

Undergraduate business students at the University of Oxford study economics and management within the traditional degree framework, largely taught in small group tutorials.

Oxford’s academic department for business is the Saïd Business School, which teaches across business, management and finance.

The school is 20 years old – fairly new compared with other prestigious business schools around the world.

Current dean Peter Tufano was at Harvard Business School before going to Oxford.

The postgraduate programmes on offer include the popular MBA programme, an executive MBA programme, a PhD in management studies and master’s degrees in financial economics, law and finance and strategic management.

MBA students can also extend their one-year degree to combine the course with one of the specialised master’s programmes.

All business students are members of an Oxford college and participate in university life outside the business school. Not all colleges accept business students but the majority do.


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4. University of Cambridge

The University of Cambridge is made up of 29 separate colleges. 

The university is also home to over 100 libraries, which hold more than 15 million books in total. 

Business and economics degrees are generally taught at the Cambridge Judge Business School. Courses include the MBA, master of finance, master of accounting and a number of MPhil programmes. 

5. Duke University

Duke University is a private university located in North Carolina in the US. As of 2018, 13 Nobel Laureates and three Turing Award winners have been affiliated with the university. 

The faculty teaches across 10 disciplines including accounting, marketing, economics, finance, management and health sector management. The Duke MBA offers several joint degree programmes with other subjects offered at the university, including medicine, law, environment and earth sciences, public policy and nursing. 

There are also a number of research centres affiliated with the business school, which focus on leadership and ethics, social entrepreneurship, innovation, the environment and financial excellence.


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Top 200 universities for business and economics 2019

Click each institution to view its World University Rankings 2019 profile

Business Rank 2019  Business Rank 2018 University Country/Region
 1  2 Massachusetts Institute of Technology United States
 2  1 Stanford University United States
 3  3 University of Oxford United Kingdom
 4  5 University of Cambridge United Kingdom
 5  NR Duke University United States
 6  10 University of California, Berkeley United States
 7  6 Harvard University United States
 8  NR London School of Economics and Political Science United Kingdom
 9  NR Yale University United States
 10  9 University of Pennsylvania United States
 11  7 University of Chicago United States
 12  8 Northwestern University United States
 13  11 Columbia University United States
 14  NR University of California, Los Angeles United States
 =15  NR University of Michigan United States
 =15  13 New York University United States
 17  16 National University of Singapore Singapore
 18  29 Tsinghua University China
 19  NR UCL United Kingdom
 20  NR ETH Zurich Switzerland
 21  12 Cornell University United States
 22  14 Hong Kong University of Science and Technology Hong Kong
 23  17 Peking University China
 24  15 Carnegie Mellon University United States
 25  19 University of British Columbia Canada
 26  NR The University of Tokyo Japan
 27  31 University of Hong Kong Hong Kong
 =28  21 Tilburg University Netherlands
 =28  22 University of Toronto Canada
 30  =24 University of California, San Diego United States
 31  18 University of Minnesota Twin Cities United States
 32  =24 Erasmus University Rotterdam Netherlands
 =33  20 University of Mannheim Germany
 =33  23 University of Warwick United Kingdom
 35  30 Copenhagen Business School Denmark
 36  NR University of Wisconsin-Madison United States
 37  26 University of Manchester United Kingdom
 38  NR University of Washington United States
 39  NR Johns Hopkins University United States
 40  39 Hong Kong Polytechnic University Hong Kong
 41  =34 Dartmouth College United States
 42  43 University of Zurich Switzerland
 43  42 University of Melbourne Australia
 44  =32 Pennsylvania State University United States
 45  =34 Michigan State University United States
 46  =36 University of Texas at Austin United States
 47  =32 University of Southern California United States
 48  NR Seoul National University South Korea
 49  =61 University of Edinburgh United Kingdom
 50  =36 Australian National University Australia
 51  46 Georgia Institute of Technology United States
 52  52 Chinese University of Hong Kong Hong Kong
 53  67 Federal University of Toulouse Midi-Pyrénées France
 54  101–125 Zhejiang University China
 55  NR Ohio State University United States
 56  38 Boston University United States
 =57  NR University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign United States
 =57  =40 Pompeu Fabra University Spain
 59  44 Arizona State University United States
 =60  =58 KU Leuven Belgium
 =60  50 University of Sussex United Kingdom
 62  =58 Aalto University Finland
 63  57 Boston College United States
 64  =40 Indiana University United States
 65  78 Nanyang Technological University, Singapore Singapore
 66  45 University of Virginia United States
 67  49 University of Maryland, College Park United States
 68  56 Maastricht University Netherlands
 69  NR University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill United States
 70  55 University of New South Wales Australia
 71  NR Kyoto University Japan
 72  79 Texas A&M University United States
 =73  =76 University of Queensland Australia
 =73  63 University of St Gallen Switzerland
 75  101–125 École Polytechnique France
 =76  65 University of Groningen Netherlands
 =76  =81 Washington University in St Louis United States
 78  66 City University of Hong Kong Hong Kong
 79  =68 Korea University South Korea
 80  NR Lund University Sweden
 81  64 Rice University United States
 82  51 University of Amsterdam Netherlands
 83  =76 University of Vienna Austria
 =84  48 McGill University Canada
 =84  101–125 Shanghai Jiao Tong University China
 =84  53 Western University Canada
 87  75 University of Nottingham United Kingdom
 88  151–175 Paris Sciences et Lettres – PSL Research University Paris France
 89  =61 Fudan University China
 90  60 Lancaster University United Kingdom
 91  NR Hebrew University of Jerusalem Israel
 92  101–125 Sungkyunkwan University (SKKU) South Korea
 93  91 Polytechnic University of Milan Italy
 =94  NR University of Florida United States
 =94  =68 Université Catholique de Louvain Belgium
 =94  74 Monash University Australia
 =97  NR King’s College London United Kingdom
 =97  151–175 Nanjing University China
 99  101–125 Queensland University of Technology Australia
 =100  71 City, University of London United Kingdom
 =100  89 University of Lausanne Switzerland
 101–125  NR University of Alberta Canada
 101–125  =85 Aston University United Kingdom
 101–125  =92 Autonomous University of Barcelona Spain
 101–125  94 Case Western Reserve University United States
 101–125  NR Emory University United States
 101–125  126–150 University of Exeter United Kingdom
 101–125  =68 Free University of Berlin Germany
 101–125  101–125 George Washington University United States
 101–125  101–125 Higher School of Economics Russian Federation
 101–125  176–200 Kyung Hee University South Korea
 101–125  54 University of Leeds United Kingdom
 101–125  126–150 Lomonosov Moscow State University Russian Federation
 101–125  101–125 University of Massachusetts United States
 101–125  101–125 University of Montreal Canada
 101–125  =87 National Taiwan University Taiwan
 101–125  101–125 Renmin University of China China
 101–125  NR Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey United States
 101–125  126–150 Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna Italy
 101–125  101–125 University of St Andrews United Kingdom
 101–125  90 University of Surrey United Kingdom
 101–125  83 University of Sydney Australia
 101–125  126–150 University of Twente Netherlands
 101–125  151–175 Xiamen University China
 101–125  72 York University Canada
 126–150  151–175 Aalborg University Denmark
 126–150  73 University of Arizona United States
 126–150  101–125 University of Bath United Kingdom
 126–150  =85 University of California, Irvine United States
 126–150  =92 Cardiff University United Kingdom
 126–150  101–125 University of Colorado Boulder United States
 126–150  101–125 Durham University United Kingdom
 126–150  NR University of Geneva Switzerland
 126–150  97 Georgia State University United States
 126–150  126–150 University of Glasgow United Kingdom
 126–150  176–200 University of Hamburg Germany
 126–150  151–175 Iowa State University United States
 126–150  NR University of Miami United States
 126–150  101–125 Northeastern University United States
 126–150  101–125 Panthéon-Sorbonne University – Paris 1 France
 126–150  NR University of Rochester United States
 126–150  126–150 Royal Holloway, University of London United Kingdom
 126–150  151–175 University of Sheffield United Kingdom
 126–150  126–150 Simon Fraser University Canada
 126–150  176–200 University of South Australia Australia
 126–150  101–125 Stockholm University Sweden
 126–150  126–150 Sun Yat-sen University China
 126–150  126–150 University of Technology, Sydney Australia
 126–150  126–150 Tel Aviv University Israel
 126–150  =87 Temple University United States
 126–150  95 Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam Netherlands
 126–150  101–125 University of York United Kingdom
 151–175  101–125 Aarhus University Denmark
 151–175  126–150 University of Antwerp Belgium
 151–175  101–125 University of Auckland New Zealand
 151–175  96 University of Bologna Italy
 151–175  101–125 University of Bristol United Kingdom
 151–175  151–175 University of Canterbury New Zealand
 151–175  151–175 Chalmers University of Technology Sweden
 151–175  NR University of Cologne Germany
 151–175  126–150 University of Essex United Kingdom
 151–175  =99 Georgetown University United States
 151–175  98 Ghent University Belgium
 151–175  101–125 University of Konstanz Germany
 151–175  151–175 Université Libre de Bruxelles Belgium
 151–175  176–200 University of Malaya Malaysia
 151–175  126–150 National Taiwan University of Science and Technology (Taiwan Tech) Taiwan
 151–175  101–125 University of Navarra Spain
 151–175  =99 University of Notre Dame United States
 151–175  NR Osaka University Japan
 151–175  NR University of Pittsburgh United States
 151–175  151–175 Radboud University Nijmegen Netherlands
 151–175  NR Sejong University South Korea
 151–175  126–150 University of Strathclyde United Kingdom
 151–175  101–125 University of Texas at Dallas United States
 151–175  151–175 Trinity College Dublin Republic of Ireland
 176–200  NR University of Cape Town South Africa
 176–200  126–150 Carlos III University of Madrid Spain
 176–200  NR University of Deusto Spain
 176–200  151–175 University College Dublin Republic of Ireland
 176–200  126–150 University of East Anglia United Kingdom
 176–200  176–200 University of Erlangen-Nuremberg Germany
 176–200  126–150 University of Georgia United States
 176–200  176–200 Griffith University Australia
 176–200  151–175 University of Illinois at Chicago United States
 176–200  NR King Saud University Saudi Arabia
 176–200  176–200 Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) South Korea
 176–200  126–150 University of Newcastle Australia
 176–200  176–200 Newcastle University United Kingdom
 176–200  151–175 NOVA University of Lisbon Portugal
 176–200  101–125 Queen’s University Canada
 176–200  126–150 University of Reading United Kingdom
 176–200  151–175 University of Southampton United Kingdom
 176–200  101–125 University of South Carolina United States
 176–200  126–150 University of Southern Denmark Denmark
 176–200  201+ Tongji University China
 176–200  126–150 Uppsala University Sweden
 176–200  NR Vanderbilt University United States
 176–200  201+ Washington State University United States
 176–200  176–200 University of Western Australia Australia
 176–200  201+ University of Wollongong Australia
 176–200  126–150 Yonsei University (Seoul campus) South Korea

Click here to view the full ranking for business degrees

Read more: Need help choosing a degree? Here is the most comprehensive to help you choose 

 

Reader's comments (2)

Since competition is tough, you should focus on is keeping your GPA very high and engaging in as many as extracurricular activities as possible. If you want to go for the best, there are plenty tips on how to get into Stanford or any other university online, so finding them should not be too difficult.
I’ve found this one https://www.crimsoneducation.org/admission-support/stanford-admissions

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