A new dawn for higher education?

1-2 September 2020

Thank you to everyone who joined us online for the World Academic Summit 2020.

On 1-2 September we welcomed more than 900 global leaders from 84 countries to share new ideas and reflect together on the challenges created and accelerated by the pandemic. See all the top stories and highlights on Twitter via our hashtag #THEwas and THE’s editorial coverage on our website.

The summit also saw the official live launch of the THE World University Rankings 2021. Read the full analysis and the methodology behind the rankings.

Due to popular demand, we have extended delegate access to exclusive insights, on-demand recordings, and resources via the virtual platform until the end of the year.

Access the platform – registered delegates

If you have not yet registered you can still register to gain full access to the platform until 31 December 2020.

Register for post-event access



World Academic Summit 2021

31 August – 2 September | Toronto, Canada


We are delighted to be partnering with the prestigious University of Toronto in Canada for the THE World Academic Summit 2021 to focus on the interrelationship between universities and the places in which they are located.

A combination of keynote speeches, participatory debates, live polling, case studies and panel discussions, accompanied by the exclusive launch of the THE World University Rankings 2022 data, will support attendees as they consider these key themes:

  • Universities’ contribution to place
  • The impact of place on universities
  • Has digital replaced physical space?
  • From the local to the global



Thought-provoking discussions and outstanding quality and diversity of speakers. THE have set the benchmark for how a virtual conference should be planned and delivered.

Christian Jowers
HEad of global engagement
IDC Herzliya


A unique opportunity to challenge ourselves to systematically reimagine our contribution to a post-Covid society.

Loretta O'Donnell
Vice-provost of academic affairs
Nazarbayev University


The summit was one of the most distinguished and valuable events, especially during this challenging time.

Mudhaffar Al-Zuhairy
Al-Furat Al-Awsat Technical University

Global partners

Featured articles

‘Performative hand-wringing’ failing to tackle university racism

New York University provost Katherine Fleming tells the THE World Academic Summit that the sector’s approach to diverse hiring can become ‘distasteful, racist and fetishistic’ exercises. Universities bear a heavier burden than the rest of society in tackling racism because they have been so complicit in it thriving.

...Read More
Wednesday, September 2, 2020 at 9:32 pm

Pandemic ‘shifting the dynamics’ of university prestige

‘Peripheral’ institutions can more easily ‘play on the world stage’ but most prestigious universities may be more likely to survive and thrive, Meric Gertler says. There is potential for the ‘worldwide embrace of virtual interaction to have a kind of levelling effect’ on higher education institutions.

...Read More
Wednesday, September 2, 2020 at 5:16 pm

THE World University Rankings 2021: results announced

Chinese universities have made several historic gains in the latest Times Higher Education World University Rankings, with data revealing that the Asian giant is closing in on, and in some areas overtaking, the US in terms of research.

...Read More
Wednesday, September 2, 2020 at 10:30 am

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