You can’t but admire the person who dubbed Times Higher Education.
The new THE University Rankings are out. Confirms earlier rankings: Ireland is slipping. I won’t repeat the whole discussion again. Just click on the “rankings” tag below to reread previous posts and comments. Here’s a summary: The metric is imperfect, but people base their decisions on it nonetheless.
Note that they changed their method again (for the better, although using Z-scores is statistically inappropriate for a Pareto distribution), so current and past ranks are incomparable.
University Rank 2011 (Rank 2010)
TCD 117 (76)
UCD 159 (94)
UCC 301-350 (>200)
NUIG 351-400 (>200)
NUIM 351-400 (>200)
The subject rankings will be published in two weeks (the PR genius was at it again).
The new IDEAS/RePEc data are out (economics only). Ireland is slipping there too. See graph. This cannot be explained by a drop in numbers. See graph. Liam Delaney and Kevin O’Rourke have left, Colm Kearney has announced his departure, and there will be more, but IDEAS/RePEc has yet to catch up with that.
Similarly, whatever people say in the media, austerity measures and employment control frameworks are likely to impact future university rankings, but I doubt they can explain much of the current rankings, as the objective measures (publications, citations) reflect the past rather than the present.
As with the QS rankings, reputation plays a big role. There is probably a spillover from bad news about Ireland in general to Irish universities specifically.