Introducing our new World University Rankings advisory board

We have appointed nine board members across four continents to improve transparency and help us further develop the league table, says Duncan Ross

March 17, 2022

In October, we started the search for members of a new World University Rankings advisory board to help us maintain and develop the global league table, including providing support for our work on a new methodology.

The creation of the board is an important part of our commitment to widen the transparency of our approach – as we’ve seen with our new Impact Rankings advisory board.

I’m delighted to announce that we have appointed nine people to join the board, and we held our first meeting last week. We had a high number of applicants, but have decided on the following members, who bring with them a range of different experience and insights.

Brad Carson (US), president of the University of Tulsa. He has previously held roles as a professor at the University of Virginia, a US congressman, a senior adviser at Boston Consulting Group and undersecretary of defence in the Obama administration. He has a keen interest in equality and diversity.

George Hulene (UK), interim associate dean (student experience) at Coventry University. He has extensive experience collaborating with universities in Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, Mauritius, Tanzania and the US. He is an associate professor in finance, and before joining academia he worked as a financial analyst.

Nur Hafizah Ismail (Malaysia), senior lecturer in the department of finance at Universiti Utara Malaysia and formerly special task manager in the corporate planning division of the institution. She has been actively involved in collecting and analysing the university’s data for rankings, ratings and strategic plans.

Amane Koizumi (Japan), who oversees research activities at the National Institutes of Natural Sciences, the headquarters of five research institutes in Japan. He is also an organising member of the Research University Consortium and a member of the Basic Research Promotion Committee in the Japanese government’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.

Ananya Mukherjee (India), vice-chancellor and professor of economics at Shiv Nadar University. A widely recognised academic leader, she previously spent more than three decades in Canadian academia, including in senior positions at two of the country’s largest universities, York University and the University of British Columbia’s Okanagan campus. Her research examines the role of universities and the Sustainable Development Goals framework.

Peter Okebukola (Nigeria), distinguished professor of science and computer education at Lagos State University. He is a fellow of the Science Association of Nigeria, fellow and president of the Nigerian Association for Environmental Education, and fellow and former president of the Science Teachers Association of Nigeria. He has more than 20 years’ experience in university rankings, having initiated the first ranking scheme in Africa in 2001 as executive secretary of the National Universities Commission of Nigeria.

Susanne Raeder (Germany), coordinator of international rankings at the University of Bonn. She has held senior positions and advisory roles in rankings, strategy, accreditation and quality assurance in academic contexts across Europe for more than 10 years. One of her projects led to the installation of a centralised ranking unit at the German Rectors’ Conference.

Chris Skidmore (UK), senior fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School, a fellow of Birkbeck, University of London, and formerly UK minister of state for universities, science, research and innovation (2018-20). Before being elected as an MP in 2010, he taught history part-time at the University of Bristol, and he is a published author of four books on Tudor and late medieval history. He is co-chair of the All-Party Parliamentary University Group, chair of ResPublica’s Lifelong Education Commission and chair of the UPP Foundation advisory board.

Susan Tighe (Canada), provost and vice-president, academic, at McMaster University and a researcher in the institution’s department of civil engineering. As both chief academic officer and chief budgetary officer, she oversees teaching and learning, faculty support, student life, and analysis, budget and planning. She is a member of the Royal Society of Canada’s College of New Scholars, a fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering and a fellow and former president of the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering.

We look forward to working with the members on the future strategy for the World University Rankings.

Duncan Ross is chief data officer at Times Higher Education.

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